Thursday, September 29, 2016

Desert . . .Wednesday Hodgepodge just a tad late

1. Have you ever been to and/or lived near the desert? What did you think? Travel and Leisure lists the 'coolest' American desert towns as- Palm Springs CA, Virgina City NE, Bend OR, Winslow AZ, Marfa TX, Grand Junction CO, Silver City NM, Moab UT, Taos NM, Yakima WA, Borrego Springs CA, Terlingua TX, and St. George UT, and Tubac AZ Have you been to any of these? Would you like to visit a desert town? Which on the list would you most like to see?
I've never lived anywhere but in the state of Alabama and we don't have any deserts!! I just asked Mark (hubby) if we have ever been to a desert . . .He reminded me that we have been to Red Rock Canyon -- The unique geologic features, plants and animals of Red Rock  represent some of the best examples of the Mojave Desert. We also been to The Kaʻū Desert which is a leeward desert in the district of Kaʻū, the southernmost district on the Big Island of Hawaii, and is made up mostly of dried lava remnants, volcanic ash, sand and gravel. The desert covers an area of the Kīlauea Volcano along the Southwest rift zone. The area lacks any vegetation, mainly due to acid rainfall. (copied that right off Wikipedia)

2. What's a plan or project you've deserted in the past year? 
I've probably started an "eating healthy project" at least 12 times this year (a million in my lifetime).  I guess I desert due to dessert (argh!!) - actually, I love salty as much or more than sweet.  I don't think I've deserted any other projects . . .I did think that I might sew for our new granddaughter but that hasn't happened.

3. Desert-dessert? Share two or three words you find yourself having to think twice about when it comes to spelling.  
Hawaii; vacuum; broccoli

4. High and dry, like watching paint dry, dry run, dry as dust, not a dry eye in the house...which phrase can you relate to currently? Explain.
I'm going with dry as dust simply because I have lots of allergies and dust (mites) are a big allergen.

5. How often do you frequent the dry cleaners? Starch or no starch?  
I have several "dry clean only" dresses.  We also send out all of Mark's dress shirts to the dry cleaners - medium starch on a hanger.  We are so spoiled.  We have a dry cleaner that picks up our bag of clothes straight from our front porch and returns them a few days later.

6. What's a food or beverage you enjoy that's named for a place?
My current obsession is the Moscow Mule.  My friend, Jan, shared a taste with me last December and it has been my "go to" drink all year.  I love my copper mugs!

7. Do you need solitude? 
YES! YES! YES!  I am an extrovert with introverted tendencies.  I love people.  I love hanging out with friends.  I love my co-workers and the interactions (most of the interactions).  I have found over the last few years that I need some solitude to re-charge.  We were at the beach last week and Mark, Glenn, Lauren, and Emma went to the beach every morning . . . I, on the other hand, spent the morning at the pool BY MYSELF. 

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
I CANNOT believe that fall is here.  I really need to get to the Farmer's Market this weekend and buy some pumpkins and some fall flowers.  We were at the beach last week and it was so hot that we had a hard time staying outside . . .tonight, it is already 65 degrees and it is going down to 52.

Friday, September 23, 2016

our father . . .who art in heaven

Sunday was a very special day for many reasons and I will blog about some of those other reasons later (I want my daughter-in-law to have the opportunity to blog about it first).  Sunday, we worshipped as a family (and extended family and friends) in our Contact Contemporary service. One of the components of worship is that we recite the Lord's Prayer together. You may know it:

Our Father, who art in heaven; hallowed by thy name.  Thy kingdom come; thy will be done; on earth as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread.  Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.  And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.  For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory.  Forever.  Amen.

So why was this special?

On one side of me sat my mother-in-law and husband.  On the other side sat my son, daughter-in-law, and  grandbaby girl.

Behind me sat George and Alice and Thomas and Laura and Brooke (some of these special folks are pictured below).

As we recited the ancient words (that are still as applicable today as they were all those years ago!), I could hear their voices (not baby girl's -- YET!) . . .our voices were joined in common prayer.  Our voices were joined together with all those around us - family and friends - but they were also joined with all the saints who have gone before us.  Our voices were joined with the voice of Jesus as he taught the disciples how to pray.

As I was sitting there, I was overcome with the meaning and the beauty of that moment in time.  So often, we (I) recite the Lord's prayer . . .just out of habit . . .we (I) don't think about the words . . .we (I) don't think about the meaning . . .we (I) don't think about what we are praying.

For that brief moment last Sunday, I thought of all those things as I prayed.

Thanks be to God.

Alice, Thomas, Susie (mother-in-law)

Brooke (we feel like she is one of ours)  and Laura (she is ours!!)

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Wednesday HodgePodge - on time!!

1. Thursday (September 22) is the first official day of autumn in this part of the will you welcome the season? I know some of you have been celebrating way too early, but it's official now so permission granted. House Beautiful recently listed ten ways to make your home smell like fall (you can read the list here) What's a scent you love this time of year and how will you add it to your home?
I am welcoming the season by . . . .spending a few days at the beach!  It is still in the 90's here (and at our house, too) so it doesn't seem like fall.  There have been a few mornings (at 5:15) when the air has had a hint of fall!!
I have horrible allergies so I'm never interested in "fake" scents but do love the scent of pumpkin spice . . .and turkey and dressing baking in the oven . . .

2. Apple pie or pumpkin pie? Apple cake or pumpkin bread? Warm apple cider or a pumpkin spice latte?
I really love apple roll and that was not one of your selections!  I also love pumpkin bread or pumpkin muffins - yummy!!  I'm not much of a coffee drinker so I guess I would vote for warm apple cider BUT it has to be a lot cooler than 90 degrees outside before I can enjoy drinking it!

3. Do you suffer from what is sometimes referred to as an afternoon slump? What helps ward it off before it hits and/or tell us what helps you shake it off once it's here?
I sometimes suffer from an afternoon slump.  If I'm home, I love to take a 20 minute power nap!  When I'm at work, I usually have a diet pepsi and get up and walk around the office for a few minutes.  I would love to eat chocolate (reese cups!) everyday at this time but . . .better not!
my co-workers know me well!
4. Ladies-how have your friendships with women inspired you or made you a better person? For the men here today- how have your friendships with men inspired you or made you a better person?
I have been blessed with an amazing group of friends.  They are awesome women and make me want to be a better person - always!!

5. Are you a people pleaser? If you said yes, do you think that's a good or bad thing? If you said no, do you wish you were more of a people pleaser? 
Yes, I am a people pleaser.  Sometimes it is a good thing . . .and sometimes it is not a good thing!!

6. The seasons are a-changin'...share a favorite song relating in some way to change (not necessarily seasonal change, it could be change of any kind).
I can only think of one song about change - it is an old worship song -- "Change My Heart, O God" - Change my heart O God, Make it ever true  - Change my heart O God, May I be like you!

7. What do you wish would never change? 
Things always change! 

8.  Insert your own random thought here
We are on a mini vacation . . .Lunch today was delicious and extra special because Emma was with us!

We walked on the beach at sunset tonight - so beautiful!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Last week's Wednesday HodgePodge on Tuesday of this week . . .just a tad behind!

I was really busy last week.  Every day I wrote "blog" on my to-do list and every day, I drew an arrow to the next day.  I'm pretty sure that the link is closed where I can connect up with other hodge podgers and Joyce is taking a break from her questions this week . . .so what the heck??  Here is last week's:

1.  Are there any men or women in blue on your family tree?
I almost said "no" . . .but I think my first cousin's son (does that mean he is my second cousin?) is a sheriff.

2. Are you someone who suffers from the Sunday night blues? What helps you get over it?
I suffer from it a little - simply because I always have more to do than I have time.  I am VERY blessed because I get to go to work in an awesome environment and work with people that I really enjoy.  Of course, there are some days that aren't so great . . but that is life!!  Several other members of our family suffer mightily from Sunday night blues.

3. I read the color blue is an appetite suppressant since there are very few naturally blue foods out there. How do you feel about blue cheese? Love it or blech? If you're a fan, what's something you like that's made with blue cheese?
I used to detest Blue Cheese but a local restaurant makes this incredible salad -- great greens, blue cheese, toasted pecans that have a sweet/spicy taste, strawberries, and I like to add chicken.  The dressing has a hint of "bite" in it.  I really enjoy blue cheese on that salad!  Here is a link to the recipe.

4. We can't head in to the Labor Day weekend without a related question, can we? Complete this thought: I work best when____________________.  Well, Labor Day is sadly over.  How can that be???  I work best when I have a little pressure.  I set deadlines for myself.  I also work "ahead" - I can't stand to be trying to figure something out at the last minute - unless I'm teamed up with someone who works really well at that point - then it is ok!

5. 'Everything yields to diligence.' Antiphanes Your thoughts? (on this particular quote or on diligence in general) I'm going to skip this question for now.  I may . . .or may not come back to it!  After much thought, I think that MOST things yield to diligence.  I think if I'm diligent in my walking and eating healthier, the goal of better health will be met.  But I think there are some things - maybe a job search? - where you can be diligent but unable to find employment . . .not sure that is a good example, because I guess you could get a job at McDonald's.  I'm going to ponder this one some more.  I would love to hear thoughts from others.  I need to read what other people have said on this one.

6. The National Park Service turned 100 years old on August 25th. Have you been to many of America's National Parks? If so share with us a favorite or two. Which National Park would you most like to visit before the next birthday rolls around?
I've been to Red Rock Canyon in Nevada - I just looked it up and it is a National Conservation Area . . .not quite a national park.  I've also been to Garden of the Gods in Denver but I looked it up and it is a National Natural Landmark.  I was beginning to panic thinking that I had never been to a National Park so I looked up the list - whew!  I've been to the Great Smokey Mountains National Park!  I've even been to two national parks in Hawaii!!

7.  Bid farewell to August in seven words or less. Bye Bye - see you next year!

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
I'm making The Best Lasagna Ever by the Pioneer woman for our young adults tonight.  It is such a good recipe!!  I think it is the combination of the meats and the slices of cheese that make it so yummy!!

Monday, September 5, 2016

One Foot In Front of the Other

Several weeks ago, a 65 year old man in our church was training for a triathlon.  He was hit by a car and was severely injured.  He is in rehab now and will be going home soon.  Everyone has been amazed by his recovery - he still has a long road to go BUT he has progressed far more rapidly than most of us would have progressed.  From what I understand, the doctors attribute this rate of recovery to the fact that he is in excellent shape from all of the exercise, etc.

Over the years, I have participated in various exercise options.  I was actually a pretty good volley ball player and an excellent kick ball player (a million years ago!).  I also played catcher on a church softball team for a couple of seasons.  My roommate, Karen, and I worked out at a local gym when we lived on Valley Avenue (I'm sure we were looking for guys!!)  I dated a guy (before Mark!) who was a runner and so I ran for a few years.  I even ran in the Vulcan Run - before metric . . .I think it was 3 miles maybe.  Actually, I was still running before Mark and I married.  After we married, I went to Jazzercise a couple of nights a week.  I took tennis lessons for a while when my kids were young (I was never good!).  For the five years or so before I went to work at the church, I went to water aerobics about 4 days a week.  I've been a "walker" on and off.

Where am I going with this litany???  I have a heel spur (pump bump) that has popped up this summer and I haven't been walking.  I've been feeling sluggish and tired.  I tried to rest it.  I tried to stretch it (I have very very very tight Achilles tendons and hamstrings - remember, I have hurt both hamstrings in the last few years).  I finally decided, "to hell with this!"

For the last month, I've been walking again.  I've been getting up at 5:15, putting on my shoes, and heading out into the neighborhood.  The first two weeks, I walked very slowly.  I found an older pair of tennis shoes in the closet and I cut the back out of one of the shoes so there would be no pressure on the pump bump.  I've been stretching REALLY WELL before and after walking.

I'm finally beginning to walk a little quicker and a little bit longer.

It is still dark at 5:15 when I normally walk but this morning, I didn't wake up until 6:15 or so and the sun was beginning to shine.

I've been putting one foot in front of the other!  After walking, I come in and strap an ice back around the back of my foot and put another ice pack on my lower back - it really helps!!

Our neighborhood is such a beautiful place to walk!!

I love how our house looked this morning.  The sun was shining between the houses across the street from us and shining right on our house!!

What do you do for exercise?  If anything ever happens to me, I want a shorter recovery time - let's get into better shape and live healthier!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Time! Time! Time!

Where does time go?  I cannot . . .I simply CANNOT believe that today is September 3.  I think I missed July and August!  Wah!!!!

Seriously!  Does anyone else feel like time is moving at warp speed?  Yes, I know the facts - there are 60 seconds in a minute and 60 minutes in an hour and 24 hours in a day - yeah yeah yeah!  I KNOW all those facts but it seems like it is spinning faster and faster.

I met two friends for lunch yesterday (there are usually four of us but one was with her "children" who drove into town).  When I was getting out of my car, one of my friends was standing in the parking lot waiting on me.  I actually looked at her and said, "I'm tired."  Sometimes I feel like we live life at a break neck speed.

BUT . . . .the office closes early on Fridays (we still work our 40 hours - just in case you felt like the church wasn't getting their money's worth :-) ).  I had planned to go straight to the grocery store from the office.  I ended up staying a little longer to finish something and I came straight home and TOOK A NAP.  (I know I have a million caps in this post)  Mark is at the farm and I slept in (until 6:45 which is an hour and a half longer than I normally sleep!!) . . . .AND . . .I took a nap today!!

I haven't blogged lately because I haven't had anything to say (hahahahaha!) - actually because of the situation above - T.I.M.E. (or lack of).  I don't even have any fun pictures to show you.  I'm getting ready to host a baby shower next Saturday and I'm excited about that!!  Maybe I'll have pictures to share.  I've been crafting (I found time to craft) and planning out the table decorations.  I hope it is going to be as cute on the table as it is in my head.  I'm also working an Emmaus walk and our team meetings began last weekend.  I haven't worked one in a couple of years so I'm really looking forward to that time at Camp Sumatanga.

One exciting piece of news (exciting to us!) . . .Emma is going to spend the night with us tonight.  Son and lovely wife are hosting a football watching party and Miss Emma is going to sleep over with us.  If I show up to serve communion at early worship tomorrow with spit up on my shoulder, you will know why . . and you can smile sweetly at me!! 

Selfie of Glenn and Emma

I'm excited about having an extra day off this weekend.  I'm looking forward to a few more naps . . .and a pedicure . . .and washing some windows . . .and cooking . . . and just being home. 

Time!  How have you been spending your time?