Sunday, February 28, 2021

Sunday Stealing

Join us with Bev Sykes of the blog "Funny the World". . Welcome to Sunday Stealing. This feature originated and published on WTIT: The Blog. Here we will steal all types of questions from every corner of the blogosphere. Her promise to us is that she will work hard to find the most interesting and intelligent questions. Cheers to all of us thieves!

1. What is the farthest you have ever traveled? I've been to Israel 3 times. It is a long flight! The first two times I went, we flew to Newark and then had a direct flight from Newark to Tel Aviv. Last year, we flew to Frankfurt, Germany and changed planes and flew on to Tel Aviv.

2. Who did you date while in high school? His name was Jimmy. I've been trying to remember if I ever dated anyone else in high school. It was a long time ago!!
3. What is one of the worst trips you've ever taken? What went wrong? Our honeymoon! Seriously! We flew to Nassau and we couldn't check in yet and Mark made us sit in the lobby with our luggage. On the plane home, they had to do repairs and it was dripping water on me. Several little things like that happened and I can laugh about them now (this was 37 years ago). We married on a Saturday and sometime around mid-week, I had a complete and total sobbing meltdown. I think things were better after that! When my husband was growing up, the owner of the company where his dad worked loaned Mark's family their Winnebago and they planned to go out west and see all the sights! They made it to Louisiana and it basically blew up (not like the movies - but there was smoke!). They turned around and came home. Mark's mom said she had washed and ironed clothes for weeks to get 4 children and two adults ready. All of those clothes had to be re-washed because they smelled of smoke. I'm not sure their daddy ever went on another vacation.
4. How do you like to spend a lazy day? If it is sunny, I love to be sitting outside reading a book soaking up sunshine. If it is raining, I love to be curled up in my chair reading! You did say a LAZY day, right?
5. How old were you when you found out that JFK had been assassinated? How did it affect you? I was 5 years old and like most five year olds back then, I was pretty oblivious.
6. Who has been one of the most important people in your life? This is a hard question -- my daddy would be one. I've also had a few school teachers/college professors and a few teachers/pastors in church who have profoundly shaped me.
7. What is one trait you would most like to improve in yourself? When I'm involved in a great conversation and I get excited . . . I often interrupt the other person. It is a horrible habit and I hate when someone does it to me. 
8. Did you date someone in college? This question should be "how many?" I dated a lot back then.
9. What was your dream car? I always wanted a Mercedes sports car but back in the fall of 2019, my hubby said I could buy anything I wanted (let me say, there was a price range and he wanted it to be a certain size for traveling). I purchased a black Lincoln Nautilus and I love it. It is very much a "luxury" vehicle with lots of bells and whistles.
10. Did you have a family member you wish you'd gotten to know better? My mom died when I was 14 and my dad died when I was 25 and I would love to talk to them as an adult. I also would have loved to hear stories from my mother's mother and my daddy's parents. I was the youngest grandchild on my daddy's side of the family so I was always the "little kid." Now I wish I knew the stories of both sides of my family.

my parents with me when I was
very young

this was my Granny George, my
mom's mom. I would love
to hear her story because
I think it was a doozy.

11. Tell me about your greatest gardening success. The first year that Mark and I were married we planted an actual garden with tomatoes and broccoli and other things. I loved eating that fresh broccoli. I've also had some hibiscus that are over 20 years old but I can't really take credit for their longevity. In the summer, Mark goes out and waters them every day and he moves them into the garage for the winter and moves them to the front porch for the summer. This past summer, I babied my hydrangeas and they were gorgeous.

One of the hibiscus is in that corner of
the porch

12. What was your Dad like when you were a child? My daddy knew and used more curse words than you can imagine. You've heard the old expression, "he could cuss like a sailor." Well, my daddy was in the SeaBees in WW2 and he was a sailor and could certainly cuss like one.
13. What is the best job you've ever had? I sure do love the job I have now. It is interesting that the last 16 years of my jobs have been the best! I worked at South Central Bell and then American Bell and then AT&T (divestiture!). I worked with some great folks. One in particular is no longer with us but his name was Mel and he was pretty amazing! Now I'm the assistant to the senior pastor at our church and I love my job. I truly love my job!
14. What are your favorite songs? I'm horrible with music. I go through spells where I listen and I have some playlists on my phone. I like all sorts of music - jazz, contemporary Christian, even old hymns. But then I also like Maroon 5 and Pink and Beyoncé. Those three are on one of my playlists.
15. If you could choose any talents to have, what would they be? Speaking of music, it would be so cool to be able to sing well. Two of my sister-in-laws and my daughter all paint beautifully and that would be a cool talent, too.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

in the can hodgepodge

Hodgepodge Questions-Volume 409

It's time for Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer in the comments below or copy and paste the questions on your own blog then join us over at Joyce's blog to share your answers with everyone!

  1. Your favorite cleaning product? Do you clean your own house or hire out? Most disliked household chore? What one chore do you not mind so much? I have a wonderful person who has cleaned our house for years. As a matter of fact, she comes every Tuesday. My favorite cleaning product is one that another blogger recommended. This carpet cleaner removed several old stains where our cat threw up! It is pretty miraculous. I cannot stand to clean the shower -- hair totally freaks me out - as in makes me gag! hahaha!  I don't mind loading the dishwasher and most of the time I don't mind doing laundry.

 2. It's Canned Food you use a lot of canned goods? What are the three canned items you purchase most often? Last thing you made using a canned ingredient? Our dinner on Tuesday night included canned tomato sauce (in a recipe). I imagine the top three would be canned diced tomatoes, Italian green beans, and fat free cream of mushroom soup. I use canned goods but of course, I prefer fresh.

 3. Can of worms, anything can happen, can you imagine?, as best I can, kick the can down the road, more than one can take, no can do, not if I can help it...choose an idiom and tell us how you currently relate. It is rare for me to not have an answer but I don't think I do! Let's see . . .no can do get a shot . . .not grammatically correct hahaha! I want a shot and am not quite old enough (that is both good (I'm not old enough) and bad (I'm not old enough)!).

4.The last Tuesday in February is National Spa Day. Are you someone who enjoys a day at the spa? Last time you visited a spa? Do you have a favorite spa? Are salons open for business in your area? Have you made changes to your hair and nail routine since Corona hit? In what way? I've never been for an actual spa day. I love to get a pedicure. I love to go to the hair salon and have my hair washed, colored, and combed/styled. Our nail salons are open with social distancing and masks. Our hair salons are open. Everyone is supposed to wear masks but sometimes people don't. I've worn double masks! Pre-covid I had a pedicure every two weeks. I've been stretching out the time and when I go, I double mask. I love a good massage and pre-covid we had a massage therapist who came to the church every two weeks and we could take our 15 minute break and go get a massage. She charged each of us a very reasonable fee and I miss those massages so much!  I had to go 12 weeks at the beginning of the pandemic to get a haircut/color. I normally go every 5 weeks. I don't like roots to show and my hair is pretty white around my face. This was the first time back in the salon and I whipped the mask off long enough for a picture. Since then, I don't think I've taken my mask off a single time in any public setting.

 5. Believe it or not this is the last Hodgepodge of the month. In one sentence sum up your February. 
How could it possibly be the end of February? I love that there is more light in each day!!

 6. Insert your own random thought here. We were able to be with our grandgirls this weekend. It was wonderful and I love the picture below. Our daughter snapped the pic of us in the park in front of our house. I actually think I might have some other deep random thoughts going on in my head but whatever they are will have to be written on another day.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Sermon from the past

I've still been cleaning out drawers and boxes. We've been in our house 6 years and it is amazing the things that are in our attic. We took pick up truck after pick up truck load of things to the Salvation Army before we moved in but we had lived in our other house for 22 years and had raised our children there so we just had a lot of stuff.

Here is another thing that I want to save. In our church, our students (youth) are in charge of the sunrise service on Easter Sunday. When our kids were seniors in high school (2005), our daughter was the one who shared the message (sermonette) at that service. I found it in a plastic tub in the attic.

Easter is one of my favorite times of the year. Easter means that spring has arrived. I must admit that my favorite part of Easter is all the pretty clothes. I know that all of you are probably thinking, "wow, that is a really girlie answer," but it's true. I love walking into the sanctuary on Easter Sunday and seeing the flood of beautiful outfits and colors. For some reason, people always want to look their best on Easter. I must say that I am guilty of this myself. I guess it is because so many people come back to church on Easter Sunday. Easter draws people back for their once, maybe twice a year visit. Many people, including myself have gotten into a tendency to where we only celebrate Easter once a year instead of all year round. We have also gotten into another tendency, we have forgotten why we celebrate Easter. I was babysitting a few weekends ago and the child's mother had left us some stuff that we could do if we got bored. She had left us Easter decorations that we could put up around the house. So we decorated the white stick Easter tree and put Easter eggs with ribbon attached to them on trees in the front yard. After we had finished that, the little girl asked what else we could do for Easter. I suggested that we make Easter cards for people that we know. While we were walking into the house I sked the little girl what her favorite part of Easter was and she said "the decorating." Being the girl that I am I thought, "Oh, I like that part, too." So we went into the kitchen and started making Easter cards. I was making cards for my family when I got to my mom's card. I was thinking about what I should draw on it. Since my mom teaches Sunday School and is very involved in our church, I decided to put a cross or another religious symbol on it. And then it hit me! Why haven't I been putting those things on all the cards. I had been putting Easter bunnies and Easter eggs and Easter baskets on all the cards. I started coloring and asked the little girl if she knew why we celebrated Easter and she said she couldn't remember why. It dawned on me then that we have forgotten the meaning of Easter. Easter is not about the Easter bunny, the decorations, or even the pretty clothes. Easter is about the fact that Jesus Christ died on the cross for us to forgive us of our sins and then on the third day he arose from the dead -- just like he said he would.

We celebrate Easter because that is when Jesus was raised from the dead -- when he was resurrected. Simple enough, right? Wrong! I thought it was simple, too. But I was wrong. I am 18 years old and have gone to church all my life and have never really known what the resurrection really means. I thought that I did, but I really didn't. So . . . feeling a bit ashamed, I went home and read everything I could find about the resurrection in my Bible. First, I got a dictionary and looked up the word resurrection. The dictionary meaning of the word resurrection says: A rising from the dead, or coming back to life; a coming back into use; revival. So that didn't really help me much. I already knew that. Then I flipped to the back of my Bible and looked under resurrection and read everything that was under it. Jesus died on the cross for our sins so when he died, we died with him in sin. Then when he was raised from the dead, we were raised with him and given a new life. When Jesus died and then was resurrected we were given the chance to have new life in him! An opportunity people had not been able to have until this point. Because of the resurrection we are changed. We don't have to fear death because of the resurrection we will have eternal life. It says in Ezekiel 37:12-14 that one day we ourselves will be resurrected and brought to live with Jesus. The resurrection changed everything for us. Something that happened so long ago has changed our lives forever. We need to remember that yes, even though Jesus was resurrected on Easter Sunday, the effects of it are going on in our lives every day. We should live each day remembering the fact that we have new life because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

I was talking to a friend of mine about what I was speaking about today. I read him what I had so far and he looked me in the face and said, "So what? What does this mean? What does the resurrection mean? What does it mean to you?" Jesus was resurrected from the dead to help save us from the dark places in our lives. Jesus was in the most deepest darkest place of all and God pulled him out and God will do the same for you and for me. As a lot of you know, I'm a senior this year and will start Auburn University in the fall. I AM TERRIFIED. A lot of people can't wait to go off to college and live on their own, but not me. I fear change greatly and this is a big change that I am going to have to face. I know this though - I don't have to face it alone BECAUSE of the resurrection. God will pull me out of this, just like God pulled his son out. Just think, Jesus died and God pulled him out. I'm just going to college. It doesn't matter what you may be facing. It could be drugs, alcohol, depression, whatever - God will pull you out of it. He will resurrect you from it. There is nothing too big that God can't handle or nothing too small. All you have to do is ask and God will resurrect you from it. The resurrection also means to me that I don't have to worry, I don't have to fear. God will always be there for me to pull me out of the dark places in my life. I have gone to Trinity all my life and I love this church and this church family. I'm scared about leaving it and having to find a new church family in Auburn, but I know that God will take my hand and pull me along and take care of me. I don't have to be scared. Resurrection means new life. When Jesus died on the cross on Good Friday the world turned grey and the curtain in the temple ripped. The world was dark for 3 days, then Jesus rose and the sun came out and flowers bloomed and the world was right again. Most of you have probably seen the cross in front of the church covered in flowers. To me, that is the perfect symbol of the resurrection, the new life. The resurrection gives me hope. It gives me hope in the fact that if I'm ever in a dark place in my life, the sun will shine again just like it did for Jesus. Jesus was dead and alone in a cold, dark tomb and the sun shone for him again. 

Has anyone ever noticed that on Easter Sunday the church service is different than any other church service except Christmas? On Easter Sunday the sanctuary is filled with huge banners and beautiful flowers, the music is wonderful and grand just like at Christmas. At Christmas we celebrate the birth of Jesus and then at Easter we celebrate the resurrection. There are reasons why these two special occasions have extra extraordinary services. The church wants us to get excited about these two special occasions. Notice today when you go to church how wonderful the service is. The church is trying to "jump start" us again on Easter. The reason why we do this is 1) because of the amazing thing that happened with Jesus rising from the dead and 2) it helps us remember what we have forgotten, the wonderful meaning of Easter and the resurrection. After the resurrection the disciples were so excited. In Acts it shows us how excited they were. They can't wait to tell the world about what they had seen. Peter, who had denied even knowing Jesus on Good Friday went and stood before the most distinguished religious leaders in the land and called them murderers after the resurrection. The resurrection changed Peter just like it changes me and you. In Acts 4:20 it says "for we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard." We have heard this amazing story of Jesus dying on the cross and then being raised from the dead and how we are changed because of it. We don't need to be quiet about it. We need to remind others and ourselves about this wonderful event and never forget it.

There are many different meanings of the resurrection and I have just found out a few. I am going to continue looking for more meanings. If you don't know what the resurrection means to you, I challenge you to find out.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Letter from the past

In my family, there are three "girls" and I'm the baby (which sounds hysterical considering I'm 62 but I do feel like a young girl quite often!!). My oldest sister is a widow. My middle sister was married to Tony for 30+ years. When they were married, Tony was like a brother to me. He actually walked me down the aisle when Mark and I married. But, alas, that marriage is no more . . .and that is not my story to tell. Our dad died back in 1982 and Tony had been laid off from his job in Texas and was able to come home to Alabama to help our step mother, Joann, take care of our daddy in his final weeks. Tony wrote the letter pictured above and I came across it when cleaning out a drawer and since it is written on a paper towel that will disintegrate at some point in time, I decided to type the words here.

9.27.82 (this was very close to when he died because Daddy died in September of 1982)
8:41 pm

Dear Lisa,
I'm sitting across the room from your dad's couch. Joann is sewing in the other chair. All is quiet, except for your dad's labored breathing. You're very fortunate to have a father who loves you so much. Several times in the recent past he's expressed to me concern over your welfare. He wants so much for you to meet the man who's just right for you. I know it seems to you that you two have been arguing nearly all your life. Loving and caring for someone doesn't assure that two people will get along swell. But I know for a fact that he's proud of you as a person and he is proud to point out "that's my little girl." I'm telling you all of this because when you left here Sunday you were hurting inside. I wanted to comfort you then but I didn't know how. I hope this letter will help you to understand that it isn't you that irritates him. It's just being alive right now, against his will. He's angry (more or less) at nearly everyone. He irritates so easily. He's not even the same man he was a month ago. He's just marking time - and it's passing too slowly for him.

Joann and I sure appreciate what you've done for us - the food, being here to help out. It means much to both of us. Of course, I know you're eager to do all that you can. After all, he is your dad. But your thoughtfulness means a lot, nonetheless.

I love you,
p.s. If this letter makes you cry, you can always blow your nose on it.

My dad had lung cancer and a tumor on his brain. It was hard to watch as it became harder and harder for him to breathe even on oxygen. He had worked as a carpenter and then as an engineer for the railroad and had breathed in every toxin known to man. He had been a smoker but hadn't smoked in a long time (probably 15 years). 

I love that he was still referring to me as his little girl. I was 24. Until this moment, I thought I was 25 when he died but I guess I was just 24. Now that I have "children" in their 30's I understand how they will always be my babies - my "little children."

I have no idea what daddy and I had argued about. Tony was right - Daddy and I were always arguing but I ALWAYS knew without a shadow of doubt that he loved me. This picture was taken after his diagnosis. He refused chemo but did have radiation. 

I want to end on a happy note -- I didn't remember that part in the letter about my daddy wanting me to meet someone. I had just started dating Mark a month or so before daddy died. Mark never met him. I think my daddy would be happy with my choice!

daddy & Lisa 1982

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Fired UP Hodgepodge

If you would like to participate, answer the questions below on your own blog then join us over at From This Side of the Pond to add your link to the party. 

From this Side of the Pond

1. This week's Hodgepodge lands on Ash Wednesday which signals the beginning of Lent. Do you mark this season in some way? If so tell us more. Did you grow up 'celebrating' Lent? Is attending church part of your weekly routine? Are churches open for in-person worship where you live? 
We worship in a United Methodist church and we do "mark" this season. Lent is actually one of my favorite seasons in the church year because I seem to spend more time in prayer and I am more aware of God's presence in my life. Due to covid, this year is totally different. Since imposition of ashes is not a sacrament, we have filled little jars with just enough ashes for a family and we are handing those out along with a devotional guide. We will have a limited attendance Ash Wednesday service but it will also be livestreamed for those of us who aren't back in worship yet. I grew up in a Baptist church and I had never heard of Lent until I began visiting our church back in the early 80's. Normally Mark and I would be in worship in the sanctuary every week. We rarely missed before March 2020. Our church is holding in person worship by reservation only. Our sanctuary will hold about 1000 people and the number is limited to 150-200. We have giant six foot arrows to place between families and the sections of the sanctuary are color coded. We've had no spread within our church which is pretty amazing!!!

2. When is the last time you sat beside a 'real' fire? We host a study each week for young professionals and we were able to meet outside in the park until the weather got too cold. We are back to zoom meetings due to weather. The pavilion has a fire place and you can make a great fire in that fireplace.

Do you have a fireplace in your home? Wood or gas logs? We have a fireplace with gas logs which we rarely light because I swear I can smell gas. We've had them checked - they are fine. I just have a weird nose. We also have a gas firepit which we do use more often. Our lovely daughter-in-law was enjoying the firepit on this night.

Favorite thing cooked over a fire? 
Just about everything is better cooked over a fire from steak and chicken and shrimp to asparagus!

3. Something that's currently got you fired up? I may have acted like an "ass" today (hubby's expression). I showed up to get my allergy shots (yes, I had an appointment). After waiting in a cold car for over 30 minutes, they called me to tell me that I didn't have any vials of medicine available. What? I was not nice to the young woman on the phone and as soon as the words came out of my mouth, I apologized and told her that I knew it was not her fault! Needless to say . . .I was totally fired up!

4. February also happens to be National Cabbage Day. Who knew? Do you like cabbage? I do like cabbage! Is cabbage on your menu Wednesday? No . . .cabbage is not on my menu today. Of the following cabbage dishes which is your favorite-coleslaw (mayo or vinegar?), sauerkraut, cabbage rolls, cabbage soup, kielbasa and cabbage, grilled cabbage, bubble and squeak, kimchi, or haluski? I love a good coleslaw - both mayo and vinegar. I also like sauerkraut on a hotdog. My favorite way is to slice onions and slice cabbage and cook in a skillet with a little olive oil. I serve it alongside chicken/apple or chicken/gouda sausages. Our other favorite is "egg roll in a bowl." We've started adding Dijon mustard on top and we feel like we are eating an eggroll with wonderful spicy mustard!

5. Do you hang on to pennies? What do you do with them? Last thing you purchased for $1.00? Last thing you purchased for $5.00? I emptied a random tub of stuff from the attic this week and found a bunch of change which I dumped into a glass jar in our bedroom. I don't intentionally hang onto pennies. I went to the Dollar Tree not too long ago (before Christmas) and bought a few things - everything in the store is $1.00. They have THE BEST helium balloons . . .when they have helium.

6. Insert your own random thought here. Mark is five years older than I and he is in the group that can be vaccinated now. We had been unable to get an appointment for him and this morning at 4:59 (we get up at 5:00) I received a text from a friend that there were spots open up in a town that is 45 minutes away. We were able to snag an appointment for him for next Thursday (a week away). It is a drive through vaccination site at a hospital and they make your second appointment at the time of the first shot. He is on a couple of lists for local shots and if he gets a call for one of those, he will take it and cancel the other. I wonder how long it will take before they move to my age group??

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Happy Hearts Hodgepodge

Here are the questions to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer on your own blog, then join us over at From This Side of the Pond and add your link to the party. See you there!

Fro  1. Something little you are loving right now?</p><p>2. Red roses or pink peonies? Red wine or pink lemonade? Red lipstick or pink polish? A cotton candy colored sky or a fiery red sunset? A book-movie-or song you love with pink or rd in it's title? </p><p>3. What's something you currently have your heart set on doing-going-seeing-experiencing? </p><p>4. Who would you most love a heart to heart with right now? Is that possible? </p><p>5. Write and acrostic for the word L-O-V-E.</p><p>6. Insert your own random thought here. </p><p style=

1. Something little you are loving right now? fresh cherries!!

2. Red roses or pink peonies? Red wine or pink lemonade? Red lipstick or pink polish? A cotton candy colored sky or a fiery red sunset? A book-movie-song you love with the word red or pink in it's title

Pink peonies

pink lemonade

pink polish

do you see a trend here?

We get to see the sunrises from our house but I do love a good fiery red sunset.

Does "the theme from Pink Panther" count? For years (seriously) I had the theme from the Pink Panther as my ringtone.

3. What's something you currently have your heart set on doing-going-seeing-or experiencing?

Getting our vaccinations - lame, right? My husband is in the age group for right now and we have NOT been able to get an appointment anywhere for him to get a shot. We have filled out two or three online forms.

My heart is also set on a family vacation in June and I desperately hope it works out where we can go. 

4. Who would you most like to have a heart to heart with right now? Is that possible? 

I would love to have a heart to heart with my parents! My mom died when I was 15 and my dad died when I was 25. I would love to have a long conversation with them. I have a bunch of questions I would ask!! My mom was raised for most of her life by someone other than her mother and I would love to ask questions about that. My dad served in World War II and I never asked about that when he was alive.  

5. Write an acrostic for the word L-O-V-E. 

I love this one by Frank Sinatra.

L is for the way you LOOK at me.

O is for the ONLY ONE I see

V is VERY VERY extraordinary

E is EVEN more than anyone that you adore can

and this one

For God so Loved the world

that he gave his Only begotten son

that whosoever belieVeth in him should not perish

but have Everlasting life

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

Since daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter live a couple of hours away, I rarely get to experience "firsts." I was able to spend the night with them on Friday night and I bought a package of jumbo crayons and a coloring book with one large image per page and we colored together! She is 18 months old and sat still for about 30 minutes which was pretty amazing! Our other granddaughter will be 5 soon and I ordered a FUN birthday present for her today!! We gave her a couple of Target finds for an early Valentine gift and she loved both of them.

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

You can teach an old dog new tricks Hodge Podge!

Thanks again to Joyce -- Here are the questions to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer on your own blog then join us over at From This Side of the Pond.

1. Feb 2nd is Groundhog Day in the US of A. Tell us about one day you wouldn't mind living over again, and why you chose that day. There have been many special days - our wedding day, the day our children were born, our son and daughter-in-law's wedding day, the day our grandchildren were born, etc. One of my favorite days was the day of our daughter's wedding. As I typed those words I had to examine my thoughts and figure out why. I'm a planner by nature and so is my daughter so we had done everything we could do ahead of time to make the day special AND stay on the budget dear hubby had given us. We had one snafu on the day of the wedding with the wedding dress but the make up artist stepped in and saved the day. We were surrounded by our friends and family (pre-covid) and we had planned a fun reception. It was just a great day. 

 2. Something you know beyond a 'shadow of a doubt'? Jesus loves me this I know! 

3. Give us an example of history repeating itself in some way, in your own life or the lives of your children. This is a silly and sweet example. My husband is a great swimmer and swam on the swim team when he was growing up. Our twins took private swim lessons at 3 and learned to swim like fish. They swam on the swim team during elementary school years. Our sweet granddaughter who will be 5 in March is taking lessons now and is evidently a fish just like her Pops, and her daddy and her Aunt LaLa. I've heard that she might even swim on a team this next year.

She is not at swim lessons in this photo
but this is a big water slide
for a 4 year old!!

4. Snowed under, snow job, not a snowball's chance, snowbird, on thin ice, snug as a bug in a rug, tip of the iceberg, snowball effect, run hot and cold....choose a wintry idiom and tell us how it best applies to your life right now. I would love to be a snowbird down on the Alabama Gulf Coast right now! My husband and I were talking the other day and I told him there was no one in the world I would rather have spent the last year with due to the pandemic. I guess we've been "snug as two bugs in a rug."

In my happy place -- yes, I have on
readers under those sunglasses - I just

This is us trying to get a photo for his mom's 95th
birthday back in the summer. We aren't good at
selfies but we are snug as a bug in a rug!

5. Your favorite sign of spring? I have two. I love to see Forsythia blooming and I love to see the daffodils when they start to bloom!

borrowed these lovely flower photos from the internet

6. Insert your own random thought here. We started a new study with our Young Professional group last night. We've been leading this group for over 10 years on Tuesday nights. Pre-covid, I would cook and serve dinner to the group before our study each week. When the world shut down last March, we missed one Tuesday night and this old dog learned the new trick of how to set up and operate meetings via zoom. We met via zoom from March until summer. We were then able to meet in the park across the street from our house. Folks brought their chairs and on cold nights we built a fire and everyone wore masks and non-roommates sat six feet apart. In December it was just too cold to meet outside and our covid numbers had spiked in Alabama so we went back to zoom. We even hosted a zoom Christmas party. I made goodie bags and left them hidden on our porch and they could drop by and pick one up the week before the Christmas party. Everyone opened their gifts one at a time via zoom. It wasn't the same as Dirty Santa but it was something. We are still meeting via zoom and this old dog learned another new trick. I made a power point presentation (already knew how to do that) and I used it during the study. It wasn't perfectly executed . . .there is a learning curve BUT I love to learn how to do new things. I'll be proficient around the time we can gather in person again. Just in case you are interested, the study is Three Simple Rules: A Wesleyan Way of Living by Rueben P. Job. The three rules are:
1. Do No Harm
2. Do Good
3. Stay In Love with God
The study guide to go along with the book is "Three Simple Rules for Christian Living."