Thursday, October 26, 2017

Yes, it is Thursday but this is Wednesday Hodgepodge!

I'm a day late but I'm posting anyway . . .Wednesday Hodgepodge on Thursday morning - seems like this is the way my life has been running lately!  Join us on any Wednesday and answer the questions and link up over at From This Side of the Pond.

1. What's surprised you most about your life or life in general?
Deep question for number 1!!  One of the things that has surprised me most is the wonderful life that I live.  We aren't rich by any means but we aren't poor.  We live in a lovely home. I grew up in a small modest home - actually built by my daddy's own hands - and I never dreamed that I would live in any other kind of home. Mark and I have two beautiful and healthy children and we have the most special grandbaby girl ever! We have a lovely daughter-in-law and will have a wonderful son-in-law in 2018.  I actually get to do a job that I love (most days!) and get paid for it.  We have health insurance. We have good food to eat and clean water to drink.  We have friends who love us like family.  Our siblings are all still living.  Mark's momma is still living and blessing us every single week.

Maybe the thing that surprises me MOST is that for a time, I lived a life that was not pleasing to God. After a divorce when I was quite young, I lashed out at God and my mother (who had died when I was a sophomore in high school).  I did everything I could that I thought would not be pleasing to them.  (no, I didn't realize these motives at the time - I was just "LIVING LIFE.")  Even through all of that, God was waiting nearby.  When I turned my face - even ever so slightly - toward him, he reached out his arms and said, "I'm here."  He loved me through it all and his grace is sufficient.  Isn't that amazing?

I could go on and with my answer for #1 but will show you a couple of cute pictures - yes, she is sitting on their dog . . .and in the second picture, she is wearing her 90+ year old (shh!) great grandmother's shoes!

2.  Sweet potato fries, sweet potato casserole, a baked sweet potato, a bowl of butternut squash soup, a caramel apple or a slice of pumpkin have to order one thing on this list right now. Which one do you go for?
Sweet potato fries!!  I could live on French fries of any kind.

3. What's a famous book set in your home state? Have you read it? On a scale of 1-5 (5 is fantastic) how many stars does it rate?
To Kill a Mockingbird - of course, I've read it (not recently!) - it is awesome. 
My all time favorite "Alabama" books are written by Anne George and they are the Southern Sisters Mystery series - they are laugh out loud books! *****
I also love The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews *****

4. There are 60 days until Christmas...have you started your shopping? How do you stay organized for the holidays?
I laughed out loud when I read that!  Of course, I haven't started my shopping.  Wait . . .wait . .. I do have one present stashed away in my closet!!
How do I stay organized?  I am a LIST maker . . .all the time!  I make a list of all the things I need to do and love drawing a line through the item when it is completed.  I've been known to even write something on my list that wasn't originally there . . .but I did it . .. and I want to mark it off!!
Working in a church puts a little twist in getting ready for Christmas.  We live in the Advent world up until Christmas day so while everyone else is going about their business, Christmas truly doesn't come until we are walking out of the Christmas Eve services for me.  It puts a little spin on the holidays.

5. October 26th is National Tennessee Day. Have you ever lived or spent any time in Tennessee? Is this a state you'd like to visit one day? The top rated tourist attractions in Tennessee are-

The Great Smoky Mountain National Park (Gatlinburg area), Elvis's Graceland (Memphis), Birth of the Music Biz (Memphis and Nashville), Dollywood (Pigeon Forge), Tennessee's Military Heritage (many battlefields), The Hermitage (Andrew Jackson's home), The Parthenon (Nashville), Oak Ridge American Museum of Science and Energy, Chattagnooa and the Tennessee Valley Railroad, Downtown Knoxville, Lookout Mountain, The Titanic Museum (Pigeon Forge), The Museum of Appalachia (Clinton), and The Lost Sea Adventure (Sweetwater)

How many on this list have you seen? Which one on the list would you most like to see?

I've never lived in Tennessee.  I've visited that lovely state several times.  We have good friends who live in Nashville (we need to go see them!!).  I've been to the Great Smoky Mountains many times.  I've been to Memphis but not to Graceland.  I've been to Chattanooga and the aquarium.  Mark and I used to "run away" for a night in a hotel and shopping in Chattanooga when our children were young.  There was a place where Mark could buy great suits at a lower price - it was worth the drive.  I've been to Lookout Mountain.

Here are Mark and Hayden at Puckett's in Franklin, Tennessee - Franklin is a great place, too!

6.  Insert your own random thought here.
Fall has finally arrived here in the deep south.  I've worn long (3/4 length) sleeves this week and I've worn pants on 2 different days!
More than one random thought - are you surprised?  The lovely daughter and I are in the wedding planning mode - we've booked the church, the preacher, the reception site, the florist, the photographer.  She has asked her bridesmaids and he has asked his groomsmen.

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