Monday, October 31, 2022

Sunday Stealing

Yay - Bev is back! She had some formatting problems today but hopefully, will be back to 100% soon. You can check out her blog and those participating at Sunday Stealing.

1. What did you do today? I did a long weekend recap but on Sunday, we got up at our regular 5:00 a.m. I rode the stationary bike for 30 minutes, showered, got ready (including make-up . . .I’m terrible about wearing it during the week), worked the Welcome Desk at church, went to the second half of early worship, went to Sunday School, went to my mother-in-law’s for a big lunch with family, made taco soup for my lunches, read a little, watched one episode of The Americans and one of Rookie, and blogged.

2. 5 things about where you live. I live in the south and am southern through and through. I live in a great neighborhood (still do even though we can’t live in our house BUT we are in an apartment nearby). I have amazing neighbors. We have more warm days than cold days. It is only a four hour drive to the Gulf of Mexico and amazing beaches.

3. What are the must-sees sights around you? Alabama’s gulf coast is gorgeous. Here in town we have a decent zoo, a lovely botanical gardens, a really cool statue called Vulcan and some really amazing places to eat. The greater Birmingham area is a foodie paradise.

4. What’s your favorite restaurant meal? I order shrimp a lot. I love a good restaurant baked potato. The thing I eat most often in restaurants would be a salad and if I can add grilled shrimp . . .all the better! If I didn’t have to watch my weight, my favorite restaurant meal would be from a meat and three – country fried steak with gravy, mashed potatoes with gravy, and some sort of veggie like green beans.

5. What was the last thing you cooked or ate? I just ate homemade cornbread and a little bowl of soup.

6. What is something you learned from your grandparents. My grandparents have been dead so long that I don’t remember learning anything from them. I do think it is cool that my daddy’s mother (Granny) was a Methodist and I’ve been a United Methodist almost all of my adult life.

7. What’s the weather like as you are writing your postcard? I would want it to be sunny with blue skies and the sound of waves in the background . . .and I would write “wish you were here.” If I were writing from right now, it would be cloudy and humid with some rain!

8. Share an interesting fact that you’ve learned, and which most people are not aware of. On Wednesday nights, we feed about 400 people at our Wednesday night suppers at church. We have a chef but sometimes extra help is needed in the church kitchen so some of us help for 30 minutes to an hour on Wednesday afternoons. If you make soup (or anything hot) that you need to refrigerate fairly quickly after cooking . . .and it is still hot . . .you need to make an ice bath and sit your container of soup in the ice bath to get the temperature to drop before refrigerating. Otherwise you run the risk of bacteria growing in the soup and causing food born illness!

8. Are there any local events or festivals in your area? I’ve seen lots of signs for fall festivals. Our church had Art in the Lot on Saturday. Our neighborhood used to host two amazing events – The Moss Rock art festival (they moved the location during covid and didn’t move back) and we used to have a great Jazz night (not sure why we don’t have that anymore). The Bluff Park Art Show happens the first Saturday of October every year and people come from all over.

9. What was the last concert you attended? I don’t even remember the last real concert I attended. I guess the last concert at all was the last Jazz Festival we had in our neighborhood and it has been several years ago (pre-covid).

10. What is your favorite charitable organization? Since we are church goers, most of our giving goes to our church. If you aren’t familiar, most Christians are encouraged to give 10% of their income to help others. Our church does TONS of stuff to help others so the money goes to lots of places. Over the years, I’ve given to Susan Komen foundation (breast cancer) and to St. Jude Hospital and I’m sure I’ve given to a few other things, too.

Sunday, October 30, 2022

Weekly Review in Pictures (and a few words)

On Monday, I had to go for my mammogram. Since it was October, they had all of the pink swag going on. I was supposed to get my mammogram four weeks ago but I had a covid booster so I had to wait until 6 weeks. I got the report yesterday - all good!

On Wednesday night, this little nugget spent the night with us because her mommy and daddy had to be somewhere VERY early on Thursday morning. Mark picked her up after school on Wednesday and then took her back to school on Thursday. It was NEON day so she was decked out in all neon . . .including pretend glasses.

The leaf on the pumpkin was just too pretty so I had to snap a photo! I have really enjoyed the tree in the courtyard of the apartment.

On Thursday night, we went to a local theater. Our friend was the director of this play and she did a great job. The acting was really good!!

It is a small blackbox theater but they do a great job with scenery in a small space!

I made some chicken noodle soup to share this week and I enjoyed a bowl myself. This is such a good recipe.

Friday afternoon after work found us looking at flooring again . . .

and light fixtures.

Friday night found us hanging out with family. Historically, we've had a fish fry every year and our son and daughter-in-law took it over this year and they did an amazing job!

I stayed outside until I was chilled! This one was riding her puppy dog who is the most patient thing ever.

There was a lot of cooking going on.

It was good to be together.

I snapped a few random pictures.

This was AFTER everyone had eaten a lot of fish and all of the sides. 

Saturday morning started with an amazing sunrise!!

Art in the Lot was at our church so I went to that for a while. I bought several pair of earrings and a dishtowel. We had a lot of vendors and it was well attended. We usually have Art in the Lot twice a year.

Our daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter #2 came to town. She might have been peeking into the neighbor's courtyard.

They had not seen the damage from the fire so we walked down the alley from the apartment to our house. I love that she is holding her Pops' hand!!

We played in the park in front of our house for a few minutes.

Even our son-in-law decided to play a little!

Today brought working in the Welcome Center, church, and Sunday school and then we headed to Mark's mom's house for Sunday lunch. We had a crowd so we all made something. These two girls have my heart and they played well together over the weekend.

We enjoyed lots of good family time this weekend!


I keep my blog as a reminder of life and all those things I want to remember. This week was a good one!

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Hodgepodge - too much about me!

Tuesday, October 25, 2022

Hodgepodge Questions-Volume 481

Here are the questions to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer on your own blog and then link up here. Thank you, Joyce, for the fun questions EVERY SINGLE WEEK. Joyce amazes me!!

1. In two or three sentences describe yourself to someone who has never met you. Hi! My name is Lisa. I’m 64 years old yet I often feel much younger, though I admit there are those days where I feel my age. I’ve been married to Mark for 38 years. I’m loud and I love to laugh. I’m an extroverted introvert which means I need my quiet “alone time” to recharge but I can be fun and gregarious and love being around people, too. I’m a #1 on the Enneagram which means I’m a perfectionist and when I’m not “perfect” the little voice in my head tells me so. I also tend to tell those around me when they do things that aren’t perfect. I’m constantly working to keep those words from exiting my mouth. I’m wordy. I’m a Christian but more than that, I try to love people and treat people as Jesus would treat them (see comment above about keeping my mouth shut).

2. Will you celebrate Halloween this year, and if so tell us how? I love Halloween! Even though our home burned, I’m going to take a chair and sit in front of our house and give out candy. Mark and I are already thinking about our theme for decorating next year. Halloween is a lot of fun in our neighborhood!!

Let's play this or that-chocolate candy or fruity candy? I don’t eat candy but if I did it would be chocolate – preferably Reese’s pumpkins!

pumpkin seeds or pumpkin pie? I love pumpkin seeds in a salad!

Halloween party or scary movie? Party

hay ride or corn maze? Both please – could I go on a hay ride to the corn maze?

carve a pumpkin or paint a pumpkin? carve

3. What's something that scared you when you were young? Are you still afraid? I don’t know the answer to this and the thing that popped into my head isn’t really something I want to share.

4. Your favorite soothing drink? Margarita all the way . . .oh, you didn’t mean that kind of soothing? I guess it would be hot chocolate!

5. Are you thinking about Christmas yet? Does this make you feel happy or stressed? Christmas has crossed my mind a few times. Number one reason is I work in a church and we’ve been talking about Advent and Christmas for months. I have thought about where we can put a Christmas tree in the apartment.

6. Insert your own random thought here.  I bought a new computer for school and home use. I went to Costco on the way home last night and bought an HP laptop. I came home and set it up and installed Microsoft office for home and student. I used my Costco credit card $'s back against the computer. I had issues during my last exam and again this week when I submitted a paper and from all I could figure out, one of the issues was I had all my work stuff open on Google and I was using Firefox for school. I don't think the school's system plays well with Firefox. Now I have a designated computer for photos, blogging, and school!

Monday, October 24, 2022

Weekend in Review

I can't believe that we've been blessed with gorgeous weather again this weekend! We had some cold nights this last week - 32 degrees F and one day the high stayed only in the 50's. Those temps are more like January than October in Alabama. This morning, it was 49 when we headed out around 6:30 and the high will be 76. Tonight's low is around the same and the high tomorrow is 77 -- WITH BLUE SKIES and sunshine! Perfect fall weather -- 4 weekends in a row!

This is the tree in our courtyard. One
of the bonuses of living here in the apartment
is that a man shows up every Monday
morning with a blower and blows
the leaves right out of the courtyard.
The apartment is part of a commercial
property (over a hair salon) so I guess
that is why it is included!

Friday morning we met with the contractor -- let the heavens open and let's all sing Hallelujah! We may have a tiny bit of forward progress! We spent 3 hours with him as he showed us all of the damage that will be repaired and it is SIGNIFICANT. The majority of our house will be re-sheetrocked (is that a word?), repainted (all but one room which we will pay to have repainted), new floors throughout, cabinets repainted, major beams replaced in the attic and upstairs ceilings, new roof, some new roof trusses, everything that is not removed upstairs will be painted with a shellac based primer which seals in any residual smoke smell, new air conditioning stuff, some of the outside siding will be replaced along with 95% of the outside will be repainted, a new brick chimney (that is where the lightning struck), new fireplace which includes the guts inside the chimney plus new gas logs, new kitchen island (we found damage yesterday so hopefully insurance will approve), new tile in both upstairs bathrooms - both walls and floors, new outside ceiling fans on screened porch (you can see water sitting in one of them), along with some pressure washing. It is significant and I give thanks over and over that Harvey and I got out safely and that we were able to save so many of our things. While we are stripped down, we are getting the contractor to price a couple of things we've been wanting to do. We are hoping to improve our primary bath and since we have to get a new fireplace, we are upgrading that plus a couple of other things.

We hung around the apartment on Friday afternoon (which Mark hates doing) but we watched one episode of The Americans.

On Friday night, we went to a friend's house for dinner and celebrated a birthday. Normally there would be 10 of us but 4 of our regulars were unavailable. We had a great dinner together.

We celebrated a birthday and YES . . .that is Mark kissing our friend's head. I'm married to such a nut!

On Saturday, I went to WW and had groceries delivered. Mark helped our brother-in-law get some sheetrock and then we headed out to run errands. We need to pick out floors for our house. We didn't pick out any yet but we like the smoothness of the hickory with a darker finish. Do you have hardwood or engineered hardwood or LVP? What color?

We went to Bass Pro Shop.

We made Alaskan Sea Bass (Mark caught it on his fishing trip to Alaska in August) tacos and Tumeric Slaw for dinner. The Tumeric Slaw recipe is from our chef at church.

Sunday morning found me working at the Welcome Center at church and then Mark and I facilitated our Sunday School class. We went to his mom's house and had lunch with family. I did meal prep and we cleaned the apartment and finished our weekend by watching an episode of The Americans, an episode of Unforgettable, and an episode of The Rookie.

How was your weekend?

Sunday, October 23, 2022

Sunday Stealing

What type of day are you having? I’m writing this on Saturday morning and so far, I’m having a good day! The sun is shining and it looks like we are going to have another gorgeous Saturday. We are going to go to Bass Pro Shop and to a couple of flooring stores.

Was there anyone who "made your day"? Last week someone gave me a very kind compliment and it made my day!

Are you liking how you look today? What a weird question! I’ve showered and washed my hair but right now I have on exercise shorts, a t-shirt with a Clorox spot on it, and tennis shoes. Before we head out, I’ll change clothes but during the day Saturday is one of my more casual days.

Have you ever eaten a bug? Not intentionally!

Are you vegetarian? Nope. I do eat Morningstar Farms breakfast sausage patties several times a week but that is simply because real sausage is too fattening for me. I do love veggies and fruits but I love meat, too.

When was your last paycheck? I get paid every two weeks and I got paid a week ago.

How many pets do you have? We have one giant cat – Harvey! He is a rescue. Just FYI . . .I'm allergic to cats and dogs and so I take shots, and zyrtec, and cingulair . . .but I'm very thankful for Harvey!

What kind of toothpaste do you use? Crest. About 45 years ago, I had allergy tests done for the first time and one of my allergies was something in Colgate toothpaste so I’ve used Crest ever since. I’ve had allergy tests several other times since then and the more recent tests have only tested for things like trees, grasses, mold, animal dander, etc.

Are you closer to being rich or poor? By worldly standards, we are rich. By local standards, we are pretty normal. Compared to some of our friends, we are poor. It is relative! Let me say that we buy the groceries we want, we travel some, we drive decent cars, we live in a nice neighborhood BUT we don’t live in the most expensive house in our neighborhood.

What was the last gift someone gave you? When our home burned in July, our Sunday School class and a few other folks gave us an unbelievable cash gift plus gift cards. It was very humbling. I think it is probably the most kind and generous gift anyone has ever given to me (us).

Do you appreciate that person? See above – it was a group of people and we appreciate them VERY much!

Did you talk to anyone you didn't like today? I haven’t talked to anyone I don’t like YET hahaha!

Do you like picnics? Depends on your definition of picnic! When my kids were young and Mark was out of town, we would “picnic” on the den floor in front of the TV and I would enjoy that! I haven’t been on an actual “sit outside on a blanket with a picnic basket” kind of picnic in a long time! There are several parks in our neighborhood and I see people having a picnic in one of those parks almost every weekend.

What book are you currently reading? Marriage, a History - How Love Conquered Marriage by Stephanie Coontz. This is my textbook for this semester. 

I just finished reading “Excuse Me While I Disappear: Tales of Midlife Mayhem by Laurie Notaro. Do not read this if you are easily offended by language and slightly off color humor. I literally laughed out loud when reading it. Amazon’s blurb says this: ”And the #1 New York Times bestselling author has never been so fearlessly funny as she is in this empowering, candid, and enlightening memoir about living life on the other side of fifty.” If you aren't easily offended and are over 50, I recommend it!

I've also been reading my Bible (Gospel of Matthew) and Barclay's commentary on Matthew for our Sunday School class.

What song did you last listen to? My playlists are quite eclectic. Last song was Great Are You Lord by All Sons & Daughters and next up is Firework by Katy Perry along with Defying Gravity by Kristin Chenoweth and Idina Menzel. While I've been typing more songs have played -- right now, it is Kill Em with Kindness by Selena Gomez . . .and now it is Overcomer by Mandisa! I told you -- VERY ECLECTIC!

How many tabs are open on your computer? Nine – I have my email, my boss’s email, two target windows, Sunday Stealing, two flooring companies, my blog, plus Amazon!

Are you a very stressed out person? I think I am. I wish I were more easy going and laid back and go with the flow but that is not who I am 😊.

Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Fidgeting along the way hodgepodge

Join us with us for the weekly Hodgepodge. Joyce provides the questions and we answer! What say you?

What's something you wish you'd figured out sooner? I have talked about this on another post, but I wish I had known that I am enough. Some days I still struggle with this, but I keep reminding myself that I am enough.

Something from childhood you still enjoy today? I still love hanging out with friends! I still love “dressing” (not stuffing but dressing) which has been one of my favorite foods for a long time.

Are you a fidgeter? What's the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word fidget? I come from a long line of fidgeter. As I’m typing this, my legs are jiggling under my desk. My sister, daughter, and one granddaughter are hair twiddlers. Both of our kids and I jiggle our legs. I have been sitting on a church pew with them and it felt like we were about to take off! All of those things come to mind when I think of fidget PLUS now, I think of those little fidget gadgets we give to kids. I wonder if I wouldn’t wiggle so much if I had one of those?? We even have similar fidget toys available for kids during worship each week.

Your favorite fall vegetable? How do you like it prepared? I love butternut squash. I like it cubed, seasoned, with olive oil roasted in the oven. I REALLY like it the way we serve it for big meals at my mother-in-law’s house. We mash it and put sugar and eggs and milk in it and bake it in the oven and then top with pecans or marshmallows. I don’t eat much sugar anymore, so I don’t fix it this way at home, but it is soooo good! It is similar to a sweet potato casserole, but it isn’t so starchy, and it is a much lighter dish.

Butternut squash (we usually call
it pumpkin casserole)

What's something you find mildly annoying, but not annoying enough to actually do anything about? Might you now? I’m hyper aware of this right now, but I hate sniffing. Especially the gross kind of sniffling – I won’t go into details. Someone sitting near my in staff chapel today kept sniffing and about every third sniffle, it was one of those gross ones. I don’t think I can do anything about it.

Insert your own random thought here.  We have our first hint of cold weather here in Alabama. Today’s weather is more like January. It will be below freezing tonight, and I don’t think it is getting out of the 50’s during the day today. The good news is fall isn’t over and warmer temperatures will return. I would have a very hard time living in a place where cold weather has already set in and will be there to stay until spring thaw.


Monday, October 17, 2022

Weekend in Review

First I want to comment on the weather - we have had three AMAZING weekends in a row with perfect weather.

On to this weekend. Thursday night isn't technically "the weekend" but for some reason I consider it so. We went to watch our granddaughter #1 cheer again. Those girls are so cute and they still have no idea that there is a football game behind them.

I've enjoyed visiting with our daughter-in-law's mom, Ann, and her friend, Donna, and our son and daughter-in-law along with their friend, Wynn. I love the social aspect (and people watching) at any kind of sporting event.

I worked on Friday morning and then met my 3 monthly lunch buddies and then got a hair cut and color. Mark and I then loaded the car and headed south to see our daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter #2. They are temporarily living with our son-in-law's parents so they don't have a place for us to stay so we booked a room at the local Hampton Inn. Just FYI - the room wasn't very clean. But it was for just one night so we dealt with it. After checking in, we walked to a local restaurant to meet all of them for dinner. You may have heard of this restaurant because it was "re-done" on Erin and Ben's Hometown Takeover.

It was a nice walk to the restaurant. I love the bridge.

The special was $2.50 margaritas and I had two which is totally unheard of for me! They actually had a beer that Mark likes on tap so he was happy, too.

We have missed seeing this cute nugget!! She is playing the drums with the straws. 

After dinner, our daughter drove us to their house and we played until little nugget's bedtime.

After breakfast on Saturday morning, we drove through the actual town of Wetumpka and
saw the outside of The Big Fish house. It was re-done on Hometown Takeover, too.

We went back over to our daughter's in-law's house where Pops drew a great pumpkin!

Laura and I grabbed a selfie in front of the sunflower!

Can you see the Honey Bees on the sunflower? Every sunflower had bees -- this is a good thing!

Isn't that little nugget cute as she wanders through the pumpkins?

There were lots of fun things to do. Son-in-law, Scott, and granddaughter at the bottom of the slide as daughter went flying down.

I did the zipline! It was kid-sized but still fun. I'm glad I wore a skort!

We went on a hay ride.

Sweet nugget got to swing.

Gran got to swing, too!

This Pumpkin Patch was really lovely and I had so much fun.
Someone in our group loved running between the rows of corn!

Today I worked the Welcome Center before early service and then we went to church, sunday school, and lunch with the family.

This afternoon we went to see three houses on the Parade of Homes. We wanted to see some of the newest colors and finishes because . . . . . . drum roll please . . . . .
we meet with the contractor at the end of this week. Maybe we are going to move slowly forward with the repairs on our house. Isn't this shower lovely??? I took a photo for inspiration. The tub and windows are reflections. This house is down a couple of blocks from our house and we got some great ideas.

How was your weekend?