Friday, September 11, 2015

Friday - Remembering September 11th

As I scroll through my news feed on Facebook, look at Instagram or Twitter today, there's no way that you can't know what today is.  I remember where I was when the first plane hit.  In the car taking my daycare kids to preschool.  I heard it on the radio, proceeded to drop the kids off, almost in disbelief and not really sure what I was hearing or what it meant.  I went home and turned on the television just as the second plane hit the other tower and remember gasping thinking this can't be happening, and could it have been on purpose?  Obviously we found out it was and still today we are haunted with the images of the aftermath, the gruesome reminders that loved ones will never come home and many lives are forever changed.

I was a different person then.  I was married on September 11, 1999 to a firefighter.  By 2001 we were not happily married due to many circumstances and ended up divorcing a while later.  But I distinctly remember thinking - those wives and husbands sent their spouses to work that day as I did many times knowing that they had dangerous jobs, but they "would" come home again safe and sound.  But so many didn't.  They died doing what they loved and would probably do it again if they had the chance.  It's what they did.  There is a mentality that one has in emergency services and it's not just a job - it's their life.  My ex-husband is still a fireman today, but is a battalion chief who doesn't man a hose or drive a truck anymore, but I'm pretty sure that faced with the decision to save a life, he'd get his white shirt dirty in a heartbeat.

Like many I was glued to my tv for days, crying at the images, so sad for those left behind.  Evil comes in many shapes and forms...that day it came as hijackers, trained to die and leave a path of destruction as far and wide as they could.  We are still cleaning up that mess today - it's so sad to see evil's hand at work in the world, and leaders seemingly turning a blind eye to the events like September 11, 2001.

My prayer for today as we remember is, let's pray for the future of America - for the lives of those still here, the lives of our children growing up in a messed up world full of corruption and self centeredness.  As God is being removed by different branches of government more and more, I wonder - how far does it go before we realize that "one nation UNDER God" and "in God we trust"  are more than just words on our currency and in our pledge. 

Hugs and love to all of you reading this - may your lives never be impacted by the hurt and anguish of those families on that fateful September day


Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Ten Tuesday Thoughts

Happy Tuesday Morning!  It feels like a Monday to me already after having my husband home yesterday, but we are up and rolling, so let's do this day!

1 - My chickens are still not laying eggs and I may have to join a support group for impatient chicken's making me a bit crazy and no amount of sweet talk, meal worms or dried oats is coaxing them into the nesting boxes. 

2 - My garden has all but quit producing except for peppers and tomatoes and a large amount of jalapenos that I need to figure out something to make using them.  I have broccoli to put in the ground and may try my hand at fall beans if it's not too late.

3 - Our ladies' Bible study starts book discussion today and we are doing "The Holiness of God" by RC Sproul in my group.  I've never read it before, but my husband has, which almost guarantees that it's a bit over my head theologically, but I am excited to delve into it with my fellow group members.  Here's the link if you're interested in checking it out -

4 -  Today I'm tackling my craft room after Bible study - it's taken on a mind of it's own and I can't stand it any longer!  If nothing else gets done but sorting the mess into workable piles, I'll feel a bit better, because right now I don't even want to go in there and even had to set up a table in my living room to complete a couple of recent projects and have room to work.  Considering my craft room is filled with just MY stuff, I need to get it together!

5 - Over the weekend about 280 students, leaders and staff went to Myrtle Beach for their annual student retreat and they baptized 80 folks in the ocean - that number is just awesome, but the fact that even one life was changed as a result of a weekend with their peers getting into God's word, worshipping and having fun on the beach together is worth all of the work that went into the conference.  To God be the glory!!!

6 -  This song has been rolling around in my head for the last couple of days.  We've done it a few times at church, but the words have been sinking down into my heart...give it a listen if you like!
7 - Fall shows are coming back to TV slowly but surely and today Candace Cameron Bure joins the cast of The View today.  I love her and hope the show will take a different path, maybe more middle of the road with her voice being added to the mix.  I just quit watching after many shows of Whoopi, Rosie, Joy and even Meredith who just annoyed me...I've set it to DVR today's show, so we'll see!
8 - I finished my first Carolina Panthers sign last night and it's headed to my Etsy shop today!  If you're not a Panthers fan, that's okay - I can make your team too!  Contact me at SmallTownGirlDesign on Etsy to place a custom order!
9 - Cooler temps are on the way hopefully soon and the closet switchover has to begin as well!  I found this pattern for a 1950's inspired dress that I would love to have this fall, whether I can make it or find one similar to buy...paired with a sweater - how cute is this!?!?  I am a fluffy sized gal, so I may hate it on my body style, but I'd love to try one on!
10 - I posted this on Facebook yesterday, so I think I'll share it here today! 
Today, instead of complaining, airing your dirty laundry on social media or making that snarky phone call or text - take a minute and pray for that person, situation or even for what's going on in your life instead. Even better - send that person a message, text or card encouraging them - be the person in their life that lifts them up, prays for them and sets the example for how to treat each other. It's never okay to make posts with the intention of belittling your spouse, child or Facebook "friend" - encourage your spouse, lift up your child and show grace to friends who need it more than extra fuel to their drama...think before you post seeking attention or getting back at someone. Let's put Ephesians 4 to work in our lives and love on those around us this week!

Monday, September 7, 2015

Monday Memos

Good Monday morning and Happy Labor Day!  I hope you are at home enjoying the holiday with your family and not headed off to work today!  Which is kinda ironic isn't - celebrating Labor Day with a day off?  I haven't had enough coffee to debate that this morning, but I'll enjoy having my hubby home today for sure!

We had a busy Saturday this weekend with me headed off to an early softball tournament with one of my Nannie kids and then an afternoon funeral for the wife of my first pastor from long ago and hanging out with my inlaws a bit.  Here is Karcen doing her thing on the ball field - she is quite the athlete and I'm so glad I finally got to see her play!


The interesting thing about marrying a man you knew as a child and your inlaws being family friends from waaaay back in the day - is things kinda come full circle at events like anniversary parties and funerals.  My parents have been gone almost 20 years, but for the last 2 weekends, I've been surrounded by their friends from 30 plus years ago and it's really quite neat.  There was even a picture of my mom on the slideshow of pictures at the funeral I attended - an unexpected blessing.  I have hugged the necks of folks I haven't seen in decades and reminisced about the good ol' days and it's just good for my heart.  I am more blessed than I can say with the opportunity to still come across families that knew my parents, loved them and are happy to share a memory of them that will forever be dear to me!

I don't have a Meatless Monday meal planned for today, because quite frankly, I don't have anything planned for supper and I'm kinda hoping my hubby is going to take me out tonight!

Here's Monday's Music from Hillsong - "I touch the sky when my knees hit the ground"  - that's just good stuff right there.
And finally Not Me Monday musings for you...
I haven't had to bite my tongue and not respond to about a dozen Facebook posts this week that simply aren't my business but I seriously want to say "seriously?!?!?!" Nope, Not Me!  I don't have a sore on my tongue from making sure I don't make inappropriate responses, Nope, Not Me!
I haven't had a cold for almost a week with a dang cough that is making me nuts and almost causing me to bring a change of clothes with me everywhere for fear of wetting my pants in a coughing fit - No, that hasn't happened to me and I certainly wouldn't blog about it! Nope, Not me!
I haven't spent time in my chicken coop talking to my flock of six about getting the egg laying starting, because why would I do such a thing?  That's certainly not a sane thing to do and surely won't make any difference at all and would cause others in my life to say "umm, honey, do you need to see someone about that?"  Nope, not this chicken mama!
There is no way I have broccoli, beans and herbs to plant for fall crops that are slowly but surely wasting away because I haven't had time to get them in the ground...actually I've had time, but this dang cold has had me up all night, grumpy and just not in the mood for anything.  But I wouldn't waste money like that, nope not me!
I certainly didn't get up in the middle of the night over the weekend and realize the power was out and tiptoe around my house waiting for some kind of home invasion to happen thinking things like "I wonder if the bad guys cut our power and are hiding the shadows waiting to get me" and "what is that noise/shadow over there and how can I protect myself"  I don't watch tv shows and movies that put crazy thoughts in my head or have an overactive imagination about stuff like that and for sure wouldn't admit that on my blog, causing concern of folks passing by here of whether I should be taking medication for that kind of stuff...nope, certainly not me. 
Have a great Monday everyone!

Monday, August 31, 2015

Monday Memos

Good Morning Morning Blogland!

This weekend was a blur for me and I'm feeling the after affects this morning for sure, even with a cup of coffee almost finished - whew!

My inlaws celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary this past Saturday and we (their children and spouses) hosted a party in their honor with about 80 friends and family and it went quite well if I do say so myself! Here's the happy couple posing with their photo from 50 years ago!  I love this!  The guest list included friends of 50 years, church friends from multiple churches throughout their lives and family, some that traveled a couple of hours to join us.  The fun thing was that because I married into a family that I grew up with way back in the day, I got to see some familiar faces that I haven't seen in more than 20 years.  I didn't remember all of them, but to hear them speak of my parents warmed my heart - I miss them every single day.  It's a blessing to know that people have such fond memories of them and that because of what God did in bringing RC and I together, the circle is still unbroken long after my parents left this earthly world and I am so very thankful for that.

50 years is quite an accomplishment and while I know it's not likely that RC and I will see that milestone since we got married so late in life, it's a great testimony of faith, perseverance and love that couples like my inlaws stay married so long, and even seem to enjoy each other's company still after all this time.  We live in a disposable society in 2015 and it's wonderful to be witness to what God has done in their marriage over the years and their faithfulness to stick with each other even when there were times that "in good times and bad" I'm certain.  Here's a few more photos of the celebration - I loved their "first dance" - they were so sweet and made me smile to see them smile, laugh and kiss while everyone watched.  And I had to laugh at my mother in law fussing at my father in law not to spin her around because she has vertigo issues and watching him tease her.

We are not a meatless meal today because I didn't plan ahead for it. But for next week, the plan is this recipe I found on Pinterest that looks really yummy!

This is a good Monday morning song, a few years old, but I like it's get up and go for the Lord!

This is a fun song we have done a few times at New River and I think it's great!
Not me Monday thoughts for today - I certainly have NOT consumed Hershey nuggets two days in a row as part of my breakfast.  I am certainly more conscientious about my diet than that and wouldn't consume empty calories first thing in the morning!
I also did not buy a pack of croissants at Target yesterday while shopping for a baby shower gift and consume them on my own over a two day period - I mean they have 18 grams of fat EACH - I would so NOT eat them all myself.  Duh!

I did NOT have a pep talk with my chickens this morning that we are in week 22 of their lives and it's time to get with the program and lay some eggs and let go of the freeloading teenager phase of their lives.  'Cause only crazy chicken ladies do stuff like that and I'm certainly NOT that,  for sure.  Ahem.

I did NOT have a good ol' fashioned hoe down in my living room listening to David Crowder's version of  "I'll Fly Away" from Passion 2013 this morning while uploading the videos to my blog this morning.  My dogs certainly didn't look at me like I'd lost it when I said (out loud) "come on dance with momma" - ha! I'm a perfectly sane 41 year old who would never do such a thing!

Have a great week folks,

Friday, August 21, 2015

Friday Frustrations (with a Dash of Thankfulness)

Good afternoon everyone!

I have fallen a bit off the blogging wagon and I'm not sorry. Is that wrong?  I'm not sure.  I've been busy, working a part time Nannie job and working on my childhood home to name a few things that have taken priority.  I have had to buckle down and just push through tired afternoons, late evenings and long to do lists with unchecked off items.  If I kicked myself for getting behind, it would only further fuel my frustration of things not completed in my life, and I'm simply not going to go there.  I'll try to get back to it soon, but I make no promises.  How's that for non commitment!?!

I have had to buckle down and commit to 9pm bedtimes to get up at 5am to walk with my husband because I really need sleep.  Events happen and weekends I tend to get off schedule, but during the week, I do my best to get in bed by 9 so that I can get settled down and fall asleep and wake up rested.  It's really better for everyone in my life.  Especially my sweet husband.  I am so thankful for his patience, his willingness to overlook the cluttered bar, the bathroom floor that needs mopping and dog hair seemingly everywhere.  I really couldn't be more blessed to call him mine and I try to say "thank you" for loving me unconditionally every time I think of it...which is probably still not often enough. 

This next week our ladies' Bible study ministry comes back into session and I'm pretty excited about seeing the girls and getting back into that routine, but it also causes me to lose a day to do other things and that's a bit stressful.  I will have to make sure my time is productive when I have it and be serious about using it wisely.  In another couple of weeks, our growth group will resume meeting in our home, and I've missed catching up with them and knowing what's up in their lives.  While it's another commitment, it's easily one of my favorites.

Next weekend is the celebration of my inlaws 50th wedding anniversary.  My 2 sisters in law and I have been working together to do the decorations, cake and food (which will be catered - SO thankful for that!)  It has confirmed what I already knew in that I am a control freak and really just prefer to do things by myself.  But this is not about me - so I'm doing my best to play nicely with others, but I'll be honest, some days I just wanna scream!  We have 80 RSVPs for the event so that's a great turnout for celebrating some great folks and I hope all the bits and pieces come together for a great party!

I hope everyone enjoys a great weekend, I'm headed to a ladies' event with my sister and some hometown friends and then home to work on centerpieces and cake topper for the party.  See y'all on Monday!


Monday, August 17, 2015


So Monday is here - and it's a doozy right off the bat! We started off our morning about 4:45am to hit the track at the school to do our walk- however, when my husband came out of the bathroom, he had realized we had no water.  We have a well and it could have been several things, but as I type this, we are waiting for the plumber, following attempting to change the switch on the pump and finding out that was indeed not the problem.  So I went and purchased some jug water and we will survive until it's repaired.  Remembering 1 Thessalonians 5:18 all day today - In EVERYTHING give thanks - yep, even broken well pumps.
My little garden is still trucking along and I was able to put up some pickles, salsa and make several more loaves of zucchini bread this weekend.  It's really amazing to watch tiny seeds grow into monstrous plants and produce SO many veggies.  I shredded and froze about 8 cups of zucchini and 2 cups of patty pan squash for use in the fall and winter for breads and baking.  I think my favorite thing about canning this weekend was the opportunity to use my mom's big canning pot to do it - memories of her using it to put up beans, tomatoes and corn made me smile.  Who knew those memories would one day be important?

These two cuties start college this month and I just can't believe it.  I swear they were in pull ups like yesterday. Seriously!  I pray their college experience is awesome and that they will make good decisions in all that they do. Nannie will always be proud of them no matter what, and I can't wait to see how God uses them in this big world.
Despite living in a lake community, I have only been on the  lake on the day we got married when we took a pontoon boat to a small island with only close friends and family to say our vows.  Yesterday, however, my sweet friend Elizabeth and her hubby asked us if we would like to join them for an evening boat ride.  We were thrilled and had a blast - perfect weather, four silly kids and a quiet day on the  lake - SCORE!

The plumber hasn't arrived yet, so I'm off to do some chores and work on some craft projects for my in law's 50th anniversary party. Have a great Monday everyone!

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Ten Tuesday Thoughts

Hi everyone!  Happy Tuesday to you wherever you are!  Here's some thoughts from a little town in SC this Tuesday morning!

1.  I took an unintended hiatus from blogging because life was just too busy and I didn't have any blog posts planned out to execute quickly last week.  I am trying to get back on schedule this week.

2.  Speaking of busy life...I don't know about you, but some days I look up and it's 3pm and I think what the heck have I done all day?  I have these to do lists and some of them feel like I wrote them back in 1987 because it's taking me so long to get them done.

3.  I have had some random swelling in my left ankle for 3 days and thankfully today it's looking better, though still not 100%,  but I still haven't figured out what triggered it.  No soft drinks, salt intake about the same, drinking water except for some sweet tea Saturday at my scrapbooking day.  I, of course, set off to Google about what causes swelling - geez - why do I do that to myself? I am just monitoring my intake of water, steering clear of any soft drinks and hoping it was a fluke and not any of the things I read about. Once again, Google is NOT my friend.

4.  My husband is sitting at the tire shop with my car as I type this and just messaged me that I need 4 tires instead of two.  Two weeks paycheck for childcare gone.  Poof.  Oh well, I guess that's why I'm doing it, to help offset the budget.  But $140 each for tires hurts my feelings, and my wallet.  Bummer.  The mechanic said my right tires were the worst and it looked like I had been driving on a racetrack.  Nope, just 485.

5.  My Etsy shop has been doing great these past few weeks - and it seems to come in spells.  I just sent an order to Pennsylvania and got one yesterday to send to New Mexico.  Pretty neat!  Haven't checked it out yet?  Here's the link if you'd like to - SmallTownGirlDesign

6.  My inlaws are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary at the end of this month and we are throwing them a party - so planning and prepping is well under way.  I am making some super cute centerpieces, I hope they'll be cute anyway, with paper flowers in the jewel tones we are using for decorations.  I'll be sure to post pictures after the event.

7.  STILL on Operation Egg Watch at the coop 'round here.  I told my husband last night that I think we got chickens that don't lay eggs.  Ha!  I'm just being impatient I know, but dang, hurry up already!

8.  I'm having supper this week with two of my Nannie's kids headed to college on Friday - how is that even possible - I swear they were just starting kindergarten last week!  So proud of them as they go off to school, but I hate to see them grow is flying by too, too fast!

9.  I have learned that I'm decidedly out of the loop when it comes to fancy smancy clothing stores that the cool kids (and adults) are into these days.  On two occasions this week, I've seen Instagram posts about oh I love these clothes from this store, and oh we had a party themed from that store.  I honestly had NEVER heard of either.  I am not sure if I'm living under a rock with my chickens or if that's just so far out of my budgetary realm that I'd never know it anyway. 

10.  I am on Day 11 of the Minimalist Game and it's getting a little tougher I'll be honest, not because of not having things to get rid of, I have plenty, but making time each day to get rid of stuff.  I worked ahead a bit yesterday because I knew today was going to be busy and I have to watch children the next 3 days.  If you haven't read about the declutter your life plan - you can do it here

That's it for today everyone!  Have a great day!  Be strong and courageous!