Sunday, August 27, 2023

It's Sunday Stealing on Animals!

I'm joining up with Bev and friends for Sunday Stealing for some fun and silly animal questions:

1. If animals could talk, which one do you think would complain the most about their day? My answer would definitely be CATS!! I would love to hear what Harvey has to say. This weekend it would be, “why did you let that little girl (granddaughter #2) come and spend the night”? Or “why did you just step on me twice, mama”? Or “how dare y’all keep me from taking my all day nap”!!


2. What do you think cats dream about during their epic naps? Harvey twitches when he goes into a deep sleep. Thursday night, he fell asleep in my lap and his head fell over and bonged my knee. He was so offended. I think he is running after a mouse when he is twitching!

He was napping in my lap and twitching

So sound asleep that his head lolled over


3. If squirrels organized an Olympics, what events would they have? They would have “who can climb the highest” event. They might also have a “who can cram the most nuts into their cheek” event or how about a “who can flick their tail the fastest” or “who can jump the farthest from limb to limb” event.


4. Do you think penguins ever get jealous of birds that can fly? I think penguins are just happy being who they are.


5. If animals had their own social media, what kind of posts would we see from them? Can you believe what my people did today? Did you know that people eat animals? Who stole my eggs? Who stole my nut stash?


6. What would be the title of the autobiography of a lazy house cat? Musings of the High and Mighty Harvey (or whatever name you insert) would be a good name.


7. If you had to choose an animal to be your personal bodyguard, which one would you pick? If you could train them, a bear would make a good bodyguard. If not, it would need to be a dog that was totally loyal to your family and to no one else.


8. Do you think dogs secretly judge us for not being able to sniff out everything they can? They are probably happy we can’t sniff it out so they can find it first.


9. If animals could wear clothes, which animal would have the best fashion sense? Once again, I want to say cat but would a bird count? How about a peacock?


10. If a group of owls started a band, what would their music style be? Who Who Who – maybe hard rock?


11. What do dolphins think when people swim with them? Look at these silly folks – let’s entertain them.


12. What do you think squirrels gossip about when they chatter to each other in the trees? Can you believe the guy in that tree over there? He has such a messy nest!!


13. If elephants played hide-and-seek, where do you think they'd hide? They would have to hide behind something VERY large – maybe in a cave?


14. What do you imagine a llama would say if you asked it about the meaning of life? I live to spit on you!


15. If you could swap places with any animal for a day, which one would it be, and why? Dogs seem so happy all of the time – they love their people. Someone feeds them. Someone pets them. I think they surely have a positive outlook on life.

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Early, Old, New Hodgepodge

1. What's your earliest memory? I was about three years old. We had a porch on the back of the house with a screen door with a “hook and eye” latch. This latch was up high so that three year old me couldn’t get out. I wanted out so I pushed my tricycle over to the door and stood on it to unlock the latch. The trike scooted out from under me and I fell. I hit my chin on the concrete floor. I remember being picked up and placed on the kitchen table so they could see the damage. We didn’t go to the doctor. We probably should have.

2. What's something about you today that the old you would find surprising? I am seriously thinking about getting a small tattoo. If you had told 40-year-old me that 65-year-old me would consider a tattoo, she wouldn’t have believed it.

3. Do you like to fish? Are you a fish eater? Favorite fish (to eat)? Favorite way to prepare fish? I don’t particularly like to fish. My husband, on the other hand LOVES to fish. The story goes that when he and his twin brother were tiny, if they walked near a puddle, they would say “fish fish fish.” He just returned from a fishing trip in Alaska. 

We also have a small lake on family property and he loves to fish there. 

Fish is not my favorite food but I have learned to love Halibut (caught by hubby). I have learned to eat a small serving of salmon (not my favorite but he has learned a couple of ways to prepare it that I will eat). I love a firm white texture to my fish. Our new Wolf oven has a gourmet setting to cook fish and we’ve used it twice and it cooked the halibut perfectly.

4. What's your biggest first world problem? I guess it is the fact that it takes about 12 weeks, or more, to get furniture after you order it. Sofa should be delivered on September 1. I'm waiting on the upholstery folks to come pick up 3 chairs, a footstool, and another sofa to be recovered. Our outdoor Pottery Barn chair cushions aren't coming until November! Just got a text from Pottery Barn - bookcases are coming on September 1. I’m excited because I can't finish unpacking boxes until I have a place to put things.

5. What one word would you use to describe your year thus far? Better! (August of this year is definitely better than August of last year. - you can read about some of August 2022 here.)

6. Insert your own random thought here. It is so hot here in Alabama!! What is the high temp for your location today?

Sunday, August 20, 2023

A Favorite or Two

I’m joining up with the Sunday Stealing folks! I’m not good at favorites but I’ll give it a try:

Name Your Favorite…


    Place: at the beach with my people

    Color: red (I also love pink and bright blue)

    Smell: bread baking? I also love the smell of a fresh cup of coffee but I don’t drink coffee. How about popcorn popping?

    Magazine: Garden and Gun - that magazine has great articles and beautiful photos

    Texture: Velvet or satin

    Thing to do when bored:   blog! Actually, I usually read.

    Precious stone: Diamonds . . .but I do love pearls, too.

    Animal: Cat -- Harvey

    Time in history: I’m going with this moment – living in this moment.

    Font: I use Cambria a lot.

    Sound: We have some new wind chimes that our friends gave us as a “moving back into the house” gift. I love to hear them. Actually, my favorite sound is a baby’s belly laugh!

    Fruit: Watermelon, strawberries, fresh Chilton County peaches, fresh cherries – I told you . . .sometimes I can’t pick a favorite

    Vegetable: homegrown tomatoes

    Store/shop: I’ve recently spent the most money at Pottery Barn – things for the house. Or are we talking about grocery stores? I use Publix and Target and Walmart but I do love Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods

    Quote: My boss says, “Err on the side of grace.” I think it might be my favorite quote these days.

    Historical figure: I wish I could talk to some of the women in history – those who did amazing things but didn’t get the credit due to them.

    Letter: the letter “e” - - I’ve been thinking about having a small tattoo with e’s

    Memory: There is no way I could pick one favorite memory. The day our children were born. The day that each of our granddaughters was born.

    Dessert: I don’t eat sweets anymore but I love anything chocolate and peanut butter (Reese’s) and I love cheesecake and I love German Chocolate cake.

    Candy: oops – see above . . .even though I don’t eat it, Reese’s

    Restaurant: Birmingham has so many great restaurants. I love Hot and Hot. I love Blueprint on Third; I love Bricktops.

    Language: I speak English but I wish I had continued with Spanish

    Thing to learn about: See above – I wish I had continued with Spanish. I’m taking Biology 102 this semester and I wish I could pick it up easier.

    Thing about yourself: I like my smile!


Wednesday, August 16, 2023

It's a HodgePodge

I'm linking up with Joyce over at From This Side of the Pond for her Wednesday Hodgepodge. She is so faithful to write the questions every week.

1. What motivates you to work hard? Words of affirmation usually get me going PLUS I'm a number one on the Enneagram and I like to do well. I'm the one who wants the A. Sometimes I can be ridiculous.

2. It's been said "Ignorance is bliss" it? It can be. Sometimes I just don't want to know. I gave up watching the news several years ago. I do glance at the online headlines but I don't read it all.

3.Would you rather be stuck on a broken elevator or a broken ski lift? Explain. I think I would rather be on the ski lift. I think I might feel claustrophobic on an elevator. Have you ever actually been stuck on either? I thought I was going to get stuck on the one at the church - it sort of did a weird between the floors thing. Our maintenance person was here locking up one night -- all by himself -- and he got stuck in the elevator and had just enough charge on his phone to make one call!!! Of the common fears listed here what's your #1-

heights-enclosed spaces-snakes-public speaking-the dark-flying I don't particularly like snakes. Of all of those, I guess it is enclosed spaces though I had never really thought about it. I don't like that feeling of being trapped somewhere.

4. What's something you like about the town or city where you live? I know that Alabama has a bad reputation and when some people hear that I live in Alabama . . .they might roll their eyes. Alabama has a lot of good things, too. We have wonderful fruits and veggies. We are actually a foodie town with some of THE best restaurants. The people are truly friendly and will speak to you and not ignore you. We don't have a lot of bitter cold weather . . .though we do have some blistering hot days this year. We have easy access to mountains and to the Gulf of Mexico and white sand beaches. 

5. Life is too short to____worry about what other people think____. Now if I could just remember that when I get caught up in worrying about that!!

6. Insert your own random thought here. Mark and his twin brother, George, are in Alaska fishing this week. He has texted several times and I think they are having fun. The water was rough yesterday and he said he was sore this morning from riding the waves. He hooked (by accident) a huge sea lion yesterday. One of the boats had a whale jump so close by that the people got wet!!

Mark on the left, Celia, Sonny, George on the right

Mark, Celia, Sonny

He sent me this one on Tuesday night
It is a silver salmon

One more random thought -- Biology 102 starts on Friday. I made an A in Bio 101. It was hard earned.

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

YA - 13 years later

I can't believe that Mark and I have been hosting YA in our home on Tuesday nights for 13 years. I came across a memory on Facebook recently and it made me think of all of the YA we've had the pleasure of meeting in those 13 years.

Below is our current group. They are amazing. We have a school teacher and a social worker and a guy who works at Lowe's and a travel agent and a pediatrician and a nurse practitioner and an engineer and a musician/roadie and a medical librarian and the list goes on!

We limped through covid. We met on zoom and then we met in the park in front of our house. I remember when we finally sat around the table on our front porch together for the first time since covid. There were just a few of them at that point.

Then our home burned and we moved into a two bedroom apartment. New folks contacted the church and asked about the group and the group started back after a 6 week hiatus and the group began to grow once again.

Last week, and again tonight, we are playing Bible games. Last week we played Family Feud, Jeopardy, and another game where we played for "gold" by answering Bible Trivia on our phones. Hannah, standing in the picture, teaches high school Spanish and is a whiz at creating fun ways to learn.

She did an incredible job creating all of these games and even brought

For Family Feud, we had to divide into four families and two families played at a time.

Someone asked me about this group the other day and I told them, "they keep us young." They really do because we know what they are watching on TV . . .so we watch it. Sometimes I read books they mention. We hear the topics of their conversations.

Are you a part of a small group? If so, is it a mix of ages? What have you been studying? Or is your group a social group? or a book club?


Monday, August 14, 2023

The weekend . . .

This past weekend sort of began on Thursday night. Thank you to any of you who have prayed for Mark's younger brother, Bill. He was diagnosed with lymphoma earlier this year and when Mark helped move him home (to their mother's house), we thought he would live just a couple of weeks. Jump ahead several months and he is celebrating a birthday . . . .and there is no evidence of cancer right now. He still has Parkinson's which is very debilitating but he seems to be doing well.

After we celebrated the birthday, Mark and I headed to the Homewood Theater to meet our friends. I've told y'all before that we have season tickets and this was the opening show of the season. It is Mark's least favorite - he calls it the "singing and dancing" show. I love any kind of live entertainment.

I also had a yearly check up at the eye doctor. She saw me last year when I was having the terrible turned sideways double vision caused by the sinus infection that required surgery . . .3 days after the fire. It was nice to go in to see her and tell her that we've moved back into our house PLUS I have 20/20 vision except for the need for readers.

I am LOVING this new storage space. To have a place to store blankets is such a luxury!!

Friday afternoon found us at Costco replacing the TV that didn't make it through the fire.

Mark and I (mostly Mark) wrestled that thing into the house and he got the brackets on the wall. We texted our brother-in-law and asked if he could come by on his way home from work to help Mark lift it onto the wall!

Mark's birthday is a week from today and he told our son that he would love for him to come and pressure wash the driveway and the front walk as his gift. He showed up bright and early on Saturday morning. The heat index has been around 110 for the last week so he need to get it done before 10 a.m. (plus granddaughter #1 had a cheer expo . . .in that heat!)

He worked hard and it looks great!

Saturday night was our neighborhood block party/picnic. I walked down to the townhall with Lu and Dave (neighbors/friends) and sat with them. It was nice chatting with folks. Mark is in Alaska and was in Alaska last year at the same time! I took the slaw toward the front of my plate.

Lu brought the cut up watermelon and it was so good.

We had live music - the guy was really good.

I won a great door prize - $150 to Fleming's restaurant

I worked Sunday morning and then went to family lunch. I spent Sunday afternoon cooking for Tuesday night because I had to work tonight (Monday).

I took the screen shot below of the temp at 4:28 Sunday afternoon - 96 . . .felt like 111! It is hot as hell here. No other word for it.

 What did you do this weekend?

Sunday, August 13, 2023

Billion Dollar Sunday Stealing

Thanks to Bev for the Sunday Stealing questions -- she steals them and we answer them. What would be your answer to some of these questions??

1. Things I would do first if I won a billion dollar lottery – if my husband were here, he would say, “hire a tax attorney.” Then it would probably be wise to see a financial planner and invest most of it. I would give a large gift to our church. I would set up college funds for our two granddaughters. I would book several trips. My oldest sister has financial woes so I would give a one-time gift to her. I think we would probably buy a condo at the beach.

2. Something I probably spend too much money on – diet pepsis and books (kindle) . . .and stuff on Amazon . . .  and groceries . . . and electricity because I like to run the air conditioner.

3. How I feel about the dentist – I like my dentist as a person. He is young and kind and does a great job. I do not like GOING to the dentist. I don’t mind a check-up every six months and the cleaning. I don’t like it if and when I have a cavity or have to have a crown. I usually request happy gas which my insurance does not pay for . . .but it is worth it.

4. Foods I am most picky about – the first thing that popped into my head is meat – especially chicken. I cannot stand to get one of those weird pieces in my mouth. I don’t even want to describe it but when it happens, I’m done. I usually don’t eat anymore of the chicken.

5. Internet friends / penpals I want to visit in person – there are a couple of bloggers who live here in Alabama and I would love to meet them. Maybe I should set something up?? I would love to see Mix and Match Mama’s home. She has shown pictures and it looks spectacular. I would love to visit a couple of other bloggers in various places in the U.S. I wonder if Mrs. Plastic Mancunian would allow me to come visit?? I’ve never been to England.

6. My healthiest habits – I exercise regularly. I actually try to exercise every day . . .though I haven’t today. Let me clarify. I did just walk to the neighborhood townhall for our neighborhood picnic/block party and I walked a lot of steps this morning. I try to eat healthy foods and I try to eat all of the food groups. Today I did splurge and have pizza at lunch and then at the picnic, I did have a small serving of mac and cheese but I ate a large serving of watermelon and a normal serving of salad.

7. Easiest, low effort foods and snacks for busy days – I love to grab a pre-made salad or a salad in a bag. Costco has a new one that has dried apples and cheese in it and it is so good. I also love to grab a banana or an orange or a Built Bar.

8. Where I go in summer to unwind – I’ve not gone anywhere to unwind this summer. I normally would love to go to the beach for a vacation but it didn’t happen last year nor has it happened this year.

9. My comfort books, tv shows, and movies – I love to read a good cozy mystery. I like other mysteries and police/FBI books but if I need comfort, a good cozy mystery usually helps. I don’t know if I have any comfort tv shows or movies – I do love Ted Lasso and have watched it several times. I would be remiss if I didn’t say my Bible. I do go to my Bible for comfort.

10. A list of good things – my family and friends – we are very blessed to be surrounded by good people. I love our home and where we live. I love my job. I love that we are at a stage in life where we can travel. I love that Mark was a saver and as much as I hated it at the time . . . I am so glad now.

11. Favorite places to take photos – we’ve had our Christmas photo taken in the park in front of our house a couple of times. I love to take sunset and sunrise photos.

12. The routines and habits I stick to most – I wake up most mornings at 5. We go to bed between 9:30 and 10:00 most nights. I drink a Diet Pepsi as soon as I get up every day. I take a shower before I go to work every day.

13. Topics I’d love to learn more about – I took several semesters of Spanish when I was in college the first time around. I would love to be able to speak it fluently now.

14. This time last year ... we were sad. We had just moved into the apartment after our home had burned. I was recovering from emergency surgery and I was wearing an eye patch due to a vision problem caused by the sinus infection which required the emergency surgery.

15. Favorite memories of someone I’ve lost – Let me start by saying that I would love to talk to my parents but my mom died when I was 15 and my dad died when I was 25 and I’m now 65. I have some memories. I’ve lost two good friends to cancer – Susan and Nancy. I loved them both and have so many good memories. Susan could make me laugh like no one else. Nancy could make me think about things in a different way. My life was  . . . .  and is better because of both of them.

Thursday, August 10, 2023

August 10 on the 10th!!


1. Tell us about your favorite summer vacation. Now, tell us about a vacation gone wrong! Wow -- let's see . . .we had some wonderful vacations over the years. Our family loves the beach and we would rent three big condos at Four Seasons of Orange Beach. My sister-in-law and her family would have a condo and Mark's mom would stay with them. We would have a condo and we usually had our own kids plus another kid plus sometimes my sister, Becky. A few times we even had Mark's brother, Bill and his wife. The third condo was George and Alice and Grace and Alice's sister, Vivia.

This was a more recent beach trip - 2021

This is on one of the family beach trips long ago

Our kids were probably high school or college
students here

A vacation gone wrong . . .we've had a couple of crazy things happen -- a few years ago, I face planted on the metal pier. Since then, we've lost several friends to massive head wounds from falls. I give thanks that I just looked really horrible. 

It was a bad fall

Two years ago, our brother-in-law got caught in the undertow. Mark and I had gone out to dinner and we got a message from our nephew telling us his dad had "almost drowned." We called our server over, paid our tab (we hadn't eaten yet), and headed back to the condo. They were loading him into an ambulance and Mark ran up to the ambulance. Just FYI - he is fine . . .but it was scary!!

2. Share an activity from your summers as a kid, but now you wouldn't even consider trying it. The only thing I did as a kid that I probably wouldn't try now is roller skate. I don't want to break a hip. We rode bikes. We played kickball. We swang and sang (that sounds funny!).

3. Is there something you love to wear in the summer, but would neverwear in the colder months? I have a tendency to wear things year round. In Alabama, we do have some cold weather in the winter but you can find me in Birkenstock sandals a large portion of the year. I detest sweaters and long sleeves so I also wear a lot of short sleeves year round.

4. Spill the tea. What summer beverage do you need to make it through the day? What beverage wouldn't grace your table ever during the summer? I drink Diet Pepsi all day long. It is my beverage of choice. I've tried to make myself drink Gatorade Zero some this summer, too. I keep diluting it so that I get more water in. I am NOT a fan of hot tea or coffee. I can drink them but I don't usually.

5. When you were a kid, was there something you did that kids today would think was a complete waste of time? Is there something kids do today you find a lost cause? This is a good question . . .we didn't have to be entertained every moment of every day. We learned to play by ourselves, if necessary. We were also very inventive using all sorts of things to make a Barbie house. I think some kids probably spend too much time using screens.

6. Share a summer movie you watch as often as you can. What summer movie do you wish had never been filmed? I have no idea! I'm not a big movie person so I can't answer this question either way.

7. Tell us about your current favorite summer song. Now tell us about a song that instantly takes you back to your childhood. I don't have a current favorite summer song which is sort of sad. The other day I was somewhere in a public place . . .and This Magic Moment came on. I remember that song playing in the skating rink when I was a kid or early teenager! 

8. Time to spill the tea again. Are you a bikini kind of girl? Or are you the type of person who only dips her toe in the water in a one piece? As an adult, I've owned 1 - count it - 1 bikini. I usually either have a one piece or a two piece with long top (not a tankini - more coverage).

9. Share a favorite summer recipe you love to fix over and over again. Now what summer recipe did you try one time and you'll never try again. I love fresh sliced tomatoes and could eat them at every meal in the summer. I know you wanted a recipe but you just can't beat fresh tomatoes in the summertime. I did make an heirloom tomato (tomatoes grown by brother-in-law) tart a couple of times this summer and it was yummy.

I made a watermelon and feta salad one time. I was served it at a luncheon and liked it so I made it at home . . .and didn't like it. This is not a recipe, but one of our local restaurants serves a Conecuh Sausage (made in Alabama) and Chilton County Peach (Alabama) pizza. It is divine.

10. What is your absolute favorite summer smell? Coppertone! What summer smell wants to make you vomit? This is a yucky question . . . so I'm trying to think of a really yucky answer - I'm going with hot trash that maybe has fish in it. Shudder.

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

It's a Cat's Meow Hodgepodge

I’m joining Joyce’s Hodgepodge group today. It seems like most of my blogging falls on Wednesdays and Sundays . . .when someone else provides the questions/topics and I just answer. Maybe someday I’ll get back to actual writing.

1. August 8th is National Cat Day. Do you own a cat? Are you a 'cat person'? Your favorite 'famous' cat?

We do own a cat and his name is Harvey – sometimes Harv for short. I am a cat person. Mark hated cats until a stray took up with us about 15 years ago. His name was Snug – short for Snuggles. After we had Snuggles put to sleep (horrible horrible day), we didn’t intend to get another animal BECAUCE I’M ACTUALLY VERY ALLERGIC TO CATS. Our daughter made us go to a rescue event and we came home with Harvey (then known as Harley which Mark refused to call him). My favorite famous cat is Pink Panther. I have always loved Pink Panther and for years had the Pink Panther theme song as my ringtone.

2. Cat nap-copycat-scaredy cat-curiosity killed the cat-cat got your tongue-like herding cats...which cat phrase applies to your life in some way currently? Explain. 

I would enjoy a cat nap every day but that doesn’t happen often. They might frown upon me sleeping at my desk!! I have been a scaredy cat (along with Harvey) during thunder and lightning storms and we’ve had a lot of those lately. Also, our new smoke alarms have malfunctioned twice. The most recent was at 3:48 a.m. Saturday morning. Harvey and I both were scaredy cats. I told him that if I could get under the bed with him, I would. The cat rarely has my tongue. I do feel like I’m herding cats at times because I’m always trying to wrangle answers from our staff members.

3. What's your favorite or most- often-made one pot meal? 

My most popular one pot meal is One Pot Spaghetti by FiveHEARThome. Here is a link to her recipe. I actually use half hot breakfast sausage (Jimmy Dean or Tennessee Pride) and half ground beef. I use a little more spaghetti sauce and a little more paste than she does. I also usually quadruple the recipe for our young adult group. 

4. What do you wish you'd placed in a time capsule fifteen years ago? 

Great question. I actually subtracted back and 15 years ago was 2008. I think our kids were starting their Junior year of college. I didn't start blogging until the following year!! Those might be the things that I would put in a capsule – some of the memories from working rush for our daughter’s sorority; tailgates at their apartments on game days; moving them back and forth from Auburn. I love that the main things we remember are the good things.

5. Your favorite hour of the day? Tell us why. I’ve always loved that time of day right at the end of daylight  . . . the sun has sort of already set but it is that wonderful time between daylight and dark  . . . especially if I can be on the water. I’m a tad crazy though because I also love sunrise. There is just something wonderful about the ability to get up and start the day with a clean slate. I may have totally screwed up the day before but when the sun comes up the next day, I get to start over in some way or another.

6. Insert your own random thought here.  One of my job duties is to schedule baptisms. Our offices are in a new part of the church and my office ceiling is leaking . . .shouldn't be happening. Anyway I found this meme today and it made me laugh out loud. I will tell you that I wouldn't want to use the water that is dripping into my trashcan . . . it is not clear! Yuck!

Since we now have a leaking roof problem,
it might be a good time to schedule some

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

What's Happening Lately

Last week, Granddaughter #1's camp was after work so she and Pops hung out together on Wednesday. Mark got out one of the rolls of paper used to cover the floor during our move-in. He gathered the crayons (which made it through the fire!!) and the duplo blocks and they drew a whole village including the Dollar General. Our family has a running joke about the Dollar General.

He is so creative. I'm glad our granddaughters get to experience it. I wish our kids had been able to experience it more. He was working hard and supporting us back then.

Just keeping it real. We are not all together yet. The room below is going to be my craft/sewing/office room. Right now all of the odds and ends are stuck in that room and in the garage. The room below had major fire, smoke, and water damage so none of the furniture made it through. I've ordered tall bookcases from Pottery Barn for the right and I'll have a desk. I can't unpack any of the boxes of books until I have some bookshelves.

I've been searching for the fabric below. I've found it online but I'm waiting to hear back from the upholstery folks we use. I can't remember the yardage. I'm going to have the two wing chairs (picture of one of the chairs is below) and footstool (ottoman) covered in the blue check. I went to Joann's Fabric and they don't have big enough bolts!! I don't like to shop but I have found it hard to shop for fabric online. I need to feel it!!

I can't remember if I've shown y'all a picture of our bathroom. I love it and am so happy with it. It is updated and clean and fresh and the mirrors make it seem bigger.

We had our first Supper Club gathering at our house - even though we have no sofa and have water stained lamp shades! (quick aside - I'm having a terrible time finding lampshades to match our lamps!) Mark grilled Salmon that he caught in Alaska last August. He is headed back there soon and will restock the freezer. He cooked the Halibut (also from Alaska) in our new oven using the gourmet setting. He literally put it in the oven and set it to the gourmet setting for fish and it cooked it to perfection!

On Sunday afternoon, we went to our friend Laura's 50th birthday party. She is the one in the center of the picture in the blue shirt. Mark and I met Laura and her husband, Scott (same names as our daughter and son-in-law) on our 2020 trip to Israel. Laura felt God calling her to ministry on/after that trip and has since attended seminary at Duke Divinity school and is now a pastor!

Our weekend ended with a little TV watching and now we are heading forward into this new week!
What have you been doing lately?

Sunday, August 6, 2023

Hanging Around on Sunday (Stealing)

I'm joining up with our Sunday Stealing folks. Bev steals the questions and we answer! Feel free to copy and answer on your own blog or answer in the comments!

1.  What do you have hanging on your walls? In our kitchen, we have a canvas painting of a lemon branch that our niece painted for us. I also have a little wreath over the stove. Our family room is in the same space and we have a painting of a magnolia bloom and leaves and we have two prints that we bought when in Charleston. Our street in our neighborhood has a “Charleston feel” and we loved the paintings. In our bedroom, we have a seascape. Right now, we have nothing in our dining room or foyer (entry).  Upstairs, one hallway has lots of travel pictures. The other hallway will have family pictures – I just haven’t hung them yet. Two of the bedrooms upstairs have various framed prints on the walls. Mark even has artwork in our garage! In our loft area, one side of the room is “all things fishing.” We only have a clock on the other side for now. We don’t have any artwork yet in the bathrooms. We plan to buy some canvases for our dining room. My craft room doesn’t have any art work yet. That room had a lot of damage and I’ve ordered bookcases and plan to set that space up as an art/study/office room. I’m sure I will have a lot of eclectic art in that room and won’t worry about a theme.


2.  Have you used an outrageous excuse to get out of jury duty? I’ve only used two excuses – one was when our twins were little bitty. I was excused. The other was last summer when our home burned and I had emergency surgery. That one was approved also.


3. Where do you like to go shopping (not for groceries)? I buy most of my clothes online – Tuckernuck, Talbots, Chico, Loft, etc. I have ordered a TON of stuff from Amazon. I love to shop at Pottery Barn – usually online.


4. What was the last movie you saw in a movie theater? We are not movie goers. I should say that Mark is not a movie goer. I actually enjoy going to the movie and have gone by myself – not since covid. Our office went to see a movie together in December and I recently mentioned that – Black Panther – Wakanda Forever. I really enjoyed it. I had not seen the first one so some of the young guys at work told me about it before we went.


5. If you wrote a note and put it in a bottle to throw out to sea, what would the note say? How about, “I was here!” I think I would include my name and contact information so when it was found, they could let me know.


6. What decision have you made in your life that you regret? I can’t say that I truly regret any decisions because my life wouldn’t be what it is today. I might wish that I hadn’t been quite as “wild” when I was in my early 20’s but that is a part of my story. I might wish that I had finished college when I was young so that I wouldn’t be taking classes at 65 but once again – that is part of my story. I actually care more about what I’m learning than I did the first time around. I might wish that I hadn’t married at 18 and divorced 18 months later. Now I know that he left me because he was gay and was trying to live as a straight man. Once again, those things are a part of my story. There is one thing that was done to me and I had no control. I can’t regret it because I didn’t do it, but I wish it had never happened. Does that make sense?


7. What is in your junk drawer? At this moment in time, I have three junk drawers in the kitchen but they are all organized. I have pencils and extra batteries and scotch tape and scissors, etc. I also did a major cleanout of my bedroom junk drawers. I kept a few things – some journals, a few mementos but I was ruthless as we moved back into the house. I lived a year without a whole lot of stuff . . .and I don’t need it.

8. Have you ever gone to a high school reunion? I went to my 10 year and my 15 year and then I went to one that was a combination of several different graduating classes. That was fun because I hung out with some folks who were a grade ahead of me. I was pregnant at the 10 year! I think the 15 year one was on my birthday because I think the band sang happy birthday to me!


9. Would you rather receive the GOOD news or the BAD news first? I think the bad news but I prefer all good news 😊.


10. What are your top 3 pet peeves? 1. Picking your nose in public 2. Chewing loudly/mouth open 3. Drivers who seem to have no idea what they are doing


11. Are there famous people from where you live? There are famous people from here! We have Courteney Cox, Emmylou Harris, Rosa Parks, Fannie Flagg, Tammy Wynette, Charles Barkley and the list goes on. We actually have some pretty famous surgeons at UAB Hospital. People come in from all over the world to see the doctors here.


12. What kitchen gadgets do you use most? Besides things like stove and refrigerator and microwave? I use my food processor. I use my good knives. I use my 3 quart pyrex dishes with lids. I use measuring cups and measuring spoons often.


13. Who was your elementary school best friend? I grew up on a street with 17 kids and a couple who lived around the corner. I was good friends with Susie and Mariea and Linda and Renea and Mary Lou and Genny. I guess my best friend for most of my growing up years into young adulthood was Karen. Our mothers taught 3 year old Sunday School together and we did a lot together.


14. Choose an animal and tell us 4 things about that animal. Harvey is our cat. He is big. He only has back claws. He was a rescue and had been de-clawed on the front paws. He plays a weird game with puff balls and carries it in his mouth and makes these funny noises. You probably wanted me to name an animal breed and tell you something about that??

15. What is your favorite pizza topping?  What do you never want on a pizza? I love the meats like sausage and pepperoni. I don’t want fish on my pizza. When we were in Italy, we were having a hard time talking with the server and she clued in that I did not want fish on my pizza. Language barriers are real.