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Friday, May 31, 2013

Relaxation, It's A Good Thing

Dear Martha,
For years I have been accused/complimented about being like Martha Stewart.  I will assure you I was never a model .... anything.  I have been able to take a sow's ear and make it into something that looked, well, not like a sow's ear.  And the not a sow's ear was a good thing.

While some folks, who shall remain unnamed, have seen me as lazy others have seen me an overachiever. Statements upon seeing my back yard include beautiful, a jungle, over done, relaxing, too much, just perfect.  So far as we were concerned it was a good thing.  Till the moles moved in anyway.

Now, Martha, with all the TV shows telling us how our homes should look as we live in them and then as we sell them, I have been feeling like the shows were not a good thing.  We have been working pretty hard getting things "show ready".  We were both pretty worn down and that was not a good thing.  But, thank God, the rains came, friends had lunch together, we slept in and cousins came to visit.  For the last 36 hours we have relaxed more than in the last 63 days.  Martha, relaxation is a very good thing.

Restfully yours,

Thursday, May 30, 2013

You Are Probably Tire of My Posts About "Fixin Thangs"

Yesterday was spent tearing out the waterfall rocks 
Washing out debris from pond folds 
Just generally getting wet and muddy.

The resale people liked some stuff
And would come to get it .. eventually.
The yard furniture, they would take NOw!

I smashed my thumb so hard between two rocks
I shouted a really bad word.
It still hurts so bad I cannot hook my bra.

We are looking at each other wondering what next.
As the rain last night has stopped the plan.
And besides we are tired of fixin' thangs.

But on top of this my Mom needs a hip replaced.
But she is scared of the surgery. 
At 94, she is tired of fixin' thangs, too.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Monday Production

On Monday the pond fishes were transferred to their temporary, watery housing along with all the pond plants.  It was an adventure "fishing" for the critters in the murky waters of our in need of cleaning pond.  The fish poo ladened waters were pumped to the various flower beds, think free fish emulsion ferterlizer.  Some pond water was pumped to the temporary home to avoid shock to the fishes' systems.
Fishes enjoying a little breakfast this morning.
New home for lava rock.

The filtration lava rock was removed and used a fill in areas where soil was removed.  Paving stones will be placed in these areas.  Hope the mole/vole gets sliced up on the lava rock.

Almost empty pond with waterfall area ready to begin work
Every path stone or flat object I turned over yesterday had mole runs beneath it.  Grrrrrrr.  So much work destroyed by such little creatures.  Oops.  Let my focus be distracted.  And that is part of the problem of getting these projects completed by this weekend.  Well, that and intermittent rain and lightning today.

A friend came over this morning to get some plants.  It started thundering and raining on us before the task was complete.  This will have to be a gather supplies, dig out other treasures for the resale facility and rest some aching muscles kind of day.

My JoAnna mini hostas.  They get only about 3-4 iches high.
Holes left from sharing plants.  It will look great in a few weeks.
New dock boards.  Miss the weathered look.
As for Monday's production, Gene finished the repair to the mini dock deck including a water seal.  Several wheel barrel loads of dirt, rocks and retainer wall stones found new homes in the back yard.  At least a half ton of rocks of various sizes still need to find new homes.  And the long awaited rebuild of the river, pond interface is to be done.  Tune back in on Thursday morning for the latest update to the saga of relocation Adcock style.  At least these two Adcocks.

Tuesday, May 28

Tuesday, May 28

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Screeeeeching Halt

Today is considered by many traditionalists to be a day of rest.  Following several weeks of intense planning, physical labor and emotional choices it happened.  We did go to worship.  While I spent an hour and a half playing in the nursery at church, Gene went to Marionville to visit his mom.

I left church and headed out in search of needed supplies for pond repair.  Choosing to shop local, I visited a locally owned operation.  Unfortunately they did not stock the needed items.  By this time, around 12:30 I could hardly keep my eyes open.  I abandoned the search and headed home.  A change of clothes due to an ill child at church was first on the list.  That was followed by starting a load of laundry including the recently shed clothing.

Lunch was crackers, beans, the last of the luncheon meat and coffee.  I sat in my easy chair to check emails only to awaken myself with a loud snort.  Gene returned from his visit shortly after the snort incident.  He gave me a report on the visit, better than most was the short of it.  I wandered over to the sofa with blankie in hand and settled in for a more comfortable short nap.  Gene tuned in the Cardinals game that was in the first inning.

I roused a couple of times only to immediately fall back asleep.  The ball game was in its final inning when I finally awoke enough to sit up and speak.  Gene told me it was 6:30.  The clothing in the washer was placed in the dryer.  Dinner was prepared and eaten.  Kitchen was straightened and I was back in my chair.  I was able to stay awake to actually get through the emails along with a visit with family on facebook.

Gene told me I was mumbling in my sleep.  I told him my sleep was filled with dreams of getting the work done in the back yard. Friday my body had noted that it was time for a day off from the work.  I took two Advil twice that day and kept going.  Saturday my body told my mind it was time.  Mind said go away there is just too much to do to stop now.  Sunday afternoon the body held a coup and everything came to a screeching halt.  Well, everything except the spreadsheet in my mind. 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

We're Changing and Rearranging

The dreams for a garden were in my head
I dug up the grass for another flower bed.
Now that it's time to sell the my dream
All the folks want is grass it would seem.

Today I dug the basil from the herb garden.
With each plant removed I feel my heart harden.
My dreams are no longer of shrubs or vines
Rather meeting our son for samples of wines

With the chance for a change in our life so mundane
There are many who think the plan is insane.
With rocks moved here and the grass planted there
When living in Austin, I really won't care.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Week Two & Counting

It has been two weeks since the initial contact with the realtors.  We have kept ourselves busy.  Gene will install one more corner protector today and we will have all the modifications done in the living space of the house.  The garage clean out is awaiting the resale store folks to show up next week.  The gentleman came yesterday and marked the area where new posts are to be installed along the fence.

A walk through by one desperate couple this proved they were not as "desperate" as their agent thought.  There was no room for their two little dogs to play in the back yard was the biggest problem.  How on earth did Cookie and Sam survive all those years?  But I get it.  I have too much  stuff in the yard for most folks.  And if it is to appeal to a wider range of folks a few changes will need to be made.

Changes will be made now that the interior is as done as it will get done.  Well, I will have to clean windows, dust and vacuum but that is just general cleaning.  It is not the get on the floor and scrub the bottom of the cabinets, polish out all the magnet marks on the refrigerator, hide all the pictures except two in the living room, change toilet seats, de-clutter or remove every shelf and peg board in the house, clean out closets, fill holes and touch-up paint several rooms, etc, etc kind of work we have been doing.

Gene lying down on the job of removing the old headboard.  One more thing off the list.

Foot, that is the accent color, not the wall color.  Now to touch-up the touch-up.  You would think I did not even read the label.  But I did, just not with my mind in gear.

Friday, May 24 will see the beginning of making some of the flower beds in the back yard into just grass.  Removing/moving rocks to down size the amount of work for someone not quite so inclined to overachieving as my yard was once described.  Today I begin dividing plants such as hostas, helebores and the like.  I had feathered in an American cranberry limb for Ernie only to find one had sprouted in a nearby bed.  Guess he will get two for good luck.

And if you folks think I am doing this just to sell the house, well, no.  Even if we do not sell the house for a year, we have to make this easier for a couple of old poops that are getting more pooped with every year.  We just want to save some of the energy for playing with friends and family.  Namely three cool grandsons.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The Song of Old Age

Old age is not about looking back
Though there is more behind than ahead.
Old age is about seeing the future,
The hope & joy in the eyes of a child.

Old age is reading the Bible like
Some kid cramming for final exams.
Reading not because we have to read,
But finding the joy in Timeless wisdom.

Old age is more about body parts
That seem to belong to someone else.
The twinge of pain in an ankle brings
Memories of a youth doing cartwheels.

Old age at times is a slow, comfortable
feeling similar to the touch of fine silk.
It is the gentle touch by a true love's hand
That embraces to the depth of your soul.

Old age is the math of life, the sum of days.
The total of years.  The fractions of minutes.
It is all we are, all we have lived and loved,
All we have feared and all we have hoped.

Old age still sees the youth you married
Instead of the wrinkles and missing teeth.
What was breathed, eaten and drank becomes
The essence of the universe of Old Age.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Spreadsheet Countdown

While the number of items has come down by about two thirds, it seems there are tons of things to do that are not really part of the initial get ready list.  Line item clean out clothes sounds simple enough.  One must select the times one can live without for the rest of your natural life.  Things like the size 12 dress you fit into for two months then regained the weight ....  twelve years ago.  Let go of the dress, let go of the pipe dream.

Once one has completed the initial, emotionally charged selection of clothing to give away, one must then tote to said give away location.  It turns out that the young folks at Rare Breed probably do not need the size 12 wool, 3 piece suit.  Nor the "going to a formal wedding" sparkly size way to big sapphire blue old lady dress.  So the clothing from Gene and me winds up being sorted into not one, not two but 4 different places to donate for best needs match.

With a 9:30 AM meeting on the north side of town, we mapped out a route to make all four locations in a relatively short time.  This route would be followed to get us back home in time to meet with the Smooth Transitions lady at 1:00 PM.  We did not allow for the fact that some of the places are almost hidden from sight to accommodate the surrounding neighborhoods.  Time added.  We, likewise, did not know one location had started being closed on Mondays.  So that delivery must now be done on the way to the doctor's office on Thursday.  I was really ready for my car to not appear to belong to a homeless person with every possession in the back seat.  Oh, well.

In the process of unloading some of the bags at Bill's Place, I uncovered the dog paraphernalia.  I had forgotten it was back there in the trunk.  Darn we were within a mile of the shelter when we left the meeting.  Now I get to take the dog stuff back across town to the animal shelter.

Here is today's status.  Trunk almost empty except for the dog stuff.  Back seat still has Plaid Door clothing drop, spa supplies for Linda Q. to store, one bulging bag of books and pamphlets for UMW.  Gene's Jeep has developed a split in the radiator.  He drove my car to get $4 + gas and the driver's side glass fell out of the grove, again.  My mom had to be put in the hospital and will have hip surgery when they get her over the bladder infection.  We marked one line item off the list.

My family members that are spread across Oklahoma are again all unscathed in the recent tornado out break.  I have a roof over my head and my son and grandsons are not underneath the remains of schools, businesses and homes.  In all the day, it is a day filled with sorrows and blessings.  Just another day on planet earth.

Saturday, May 18, 2013


Friday deadline is here if I wish to participate in the Spin Cycle theme.   I decided I wanted to fondly remember a few of my hairy BFFs.  The first of the hairy friends came from my mom's brothers when I was just a baby.  They were just pups themselves and part greyhound blood.  Uncle Clay gave me the yellow one, Uncle Bud gave me the black one.

They were named Yella and Blackie.  Real original, right?  Blackie died when he was about four.  I do not remember much about him.  Yella as most farm dogs had some table scraps.  Mostly he chased and caught his own food.  Rabbits were one of his favorite and his greyhound bloodline made them easily caught.  Yella would follow the bus to the country school we girls attended.  This was probably because my folks drove the bus.  Yella was a favorite with the kids.  We used his back as a slide.  Yella lived till he was 9 or 10 years old.  I cried for days after finding his stiff body next to the dirt driveway at our house.

As with all country homes we had cats that lived outside.  There was one cat, Mildred, that was allowed in the house as she was a great mouser.  Old farm houses were prone to mice in the winter.  Mildred was such a good mouser she would be loaned to other farmers to mouse their homes.  That probably makes some of you just shutter and go "Eeewwwww".  That is just how is was down on the farm.  Cats are still needed in barns, etc where there are grains and hay.  Two favorite places for mice.

There were several years between the Yella years and the arrival a Priscilla the blue point Siamese in our life.  We had moved into our new home and a coworker had a cat she wanted to give away due to a new grandbaby in the house.  Priscilla very shortly went into heat and literally climbed the aluminum frame windows in our home.  A too slowly closed door led to the great escape.  We thought we had lost Priscilla.  But no, we had not lost her, we had gained a family of kittens.  Once the kittens were weaned and given to a farmer, Miss Priss visited the vet for a little snip work

Lots of Priscilla stories could be told.  She did get lost again after we moved to Missouri.  We had jumped in the car and took off only to notice Priscilla holding on for dear life.  Those same nails that climbed the windows in Texas had a death grip on the edge of the car trunk lid up next to the back window.  I came to a screeching stop.  John Roger & I catapulted from the car to get her.  We were no match for for a four legged terrified cat.  

About 6 months later I saw her walking down the sidewalk next to my husband's family's TV shop.  I called her name and she came right up to me.  A person who had watch the as I called and Priscilla had responded came to me.  Priscilla had turned up at their house.  As Priscilla did not like a collar, there were no tags.  The lady said she knew the cat belonged to someone as she looked cared for.  They had named her Princess.  They let us have her back.  Priscilla was over 17 years old when she just wandered away one day.

Sara was a mongrel/sheep dog that showed up at our home in Texas.  Gene liked her and vise versa.  So we began feeding her.  Took her to the vet, got shots, meds for worms and dip for the mange she had.  Cleaned her up real good.  She was looking good, a little too good.  I glanced out the window and she was hooked up with an ambitious beagle.  Some of the puppies looked like Sara, some the ambitious beagle.  I only remember where one of the beagle look likes went, to my non-hairy BFF from high school, Dona.  The dispersal of this litter led to another trip to the vet.

Our son brought several cats into our life via our friend Donna.  Donna is one of those folks with a flashing sign visible only to the stray animal's eye.  I am certain the sign flashes alternating messages "Animal lover" and "she is a real sucker for strays".  And we were suckers for her animal redistribution system.  She is better than any shelter I ever seen.  Yellow Lantern, Priss, Charlie and Bert are the names of cats I remember.  I will need to commit at least a couple of blogs apiece to the antics of Charlie and Bert.  Our last dog was 11 year old Cookie.  Cookie was Gene's dog that Donna set up for him for his retirement companion. 

Cookie did not like baths.  One night I spelled "b a t h" to Gene and Cookie ran behind the chair.  We did not believe what we saw so spelled it again.  She ran under the bed.  One smart Cookie.  Cookie became gravely ill while we were in Texas to move my mom.  The vet that had snipped an animal or two for us put Cookie out of her misery.  Gene decided we did not need more ashes so Cookie is somewhere near Allen, Texas.

The aforementioned Charlie lived through being run over by a car.  His lower jaw was broken just to the right of the point of his chin.  The vet wired the broken chin together till it healed then removed the wire.  Charlie died at around 15+ from cancer that developed around the chin injury.  That is what cats will do, develop cancer is areas of injury.  Our last cat came quickly after that as our son and his then wife knew we needed the small, one eyed female that wandered up to them at a McDonald's parking lot.  They drove to Missouri one weekend to deliver the Tejas Gato named Cinders.  Cinders died from cancer caused by the loss of her eye.  An injury before we ever even had her.  Cinders was our cat but she liked to sleep on me as did Charlie.  Cinders is buried under the cedar slice by the dogwood in our back yard.  Shhh, that's illegal in this county.

Only minutes before reading the Spin Cycle challenge for this week, I had informed Gene that the ashes of Samantha, our Golden retriever, would make the move to Texas.  Sam was received from a coworker that was "dog poor".  Anyone not from the South might need to know that means she had too many dogs.  As usual, I digress.

Sam started out as our then teenage son's dog.  She ended up being my dog, the last of the dogs that claimed me as the special member.  Of course she was a golden retriever so that means anyone will to pet her was her new favorite person of the minute.  On thunderous, stormy nights, Sam sought solace by coming to my side of the bed.  Her body would press against the side of the mattress.  Her shaking was so intense you would have sworn someone just put a quarter in the bed at the cheap motel.  If we were at work when a storm would blow up, our kind neighbor would come over to set with Sam.  More than once she became so frightened she soil in the house.  Sam would then be so embarrassed after that.

Sam was beside me as I dug tons of rocks out or my yard.  In the early spring we would spend Saturday mornings on the patio.  Sometimes I could blow an hour combing out the winter under growth she shed.  I would let part of the hair blow around the yard for the birds to use building their nests.  Always the lady, Sam would gently place her teeth on my combing hand when she had endured as much combing as she wanted that day.  

Following a combing session I would dig more rocks, that is what they call gardening in southwest Missouri.  Then us girls would go in for a shower.  Doggie shampoo for Sam and even a special toothbrush for her.  I would dry her off with special Sam towels.  I even has a pink shortie robe I would put on Sam after her bath.  She tolerated that good enough but the pink head band left her with a disgusted face.  I have a picture somewhere of her looking disgusted.  Of course a little combing and telling her how pretty she was had her smiling in no time.

Sam was suffered from cancer in her last few months of life.  One morning Sam was especially ill.  I prepared to literally carry her to the car for what was the final vet visit. But I stopped and sat in the floor next to her for a little Sam time.  I was stroking her head and telling how how much I love and enjoyed her even though she did occasionally dig up flower beds.  She lifted her paw and placed it across my other hand.  She looked at me with one of  those deep brown eyed looks telling me it would okay.   Sam was 14 years old.  I am bawling just remembering that day.

And that is why Sam's ashes will be moved with us to a different state.  And the ashes will not be spread or buried outside cause it might just blow us one of those loud, thunderous storms.  Sam needs to be inside and close to us not out in the storm.

You'll find less sappy, funnier and just plain good reads over at Gretchen's

Second Blooming

My Sam being happy one Saturday as I dug rocks/gardened.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Spreadsheet Status

If anyone out there is keeping track with me on the 48 line item checklist here is today's results.  We had managed to complete about 15 items over the last few days.  So we were feeling pretty good as that meant the list was about one third done.  The staging person arrived shortly after I returned from a circle meeting.

Generally she was very pleased with what we had done to the place inside.  And that was with only one third the list being done!  The designer even liked the wallpaper in the hall bath, "very Ralph Lauren".  Great, remove a few small items from the room and move along.

Each room was evaluated and lists for each room were modified.  Line items were even removed from the list.  There was an addition here and the along the way. We came to the kitchen the had been stripped to 3 trays, one small shelf that holds the phone and 3 little plaques.  Well and that one dead plant I have not felt like carrying someplace yet.  A calendar and 3 magnets were on the side of the refrigerator by my desk.   Those will stay in place until the day of an open house as will a couple of other things.  And I need to reduce the amount in the small hutch.

I really do not mind doing this stuff because it has sort of been bugging me to have all the stuff crammed together.  No one thing can be appreciated when there is so much.  It is really about tubs and space, cubic feet.  There are now so many tubs in the 3rd garage that I am unsure where to put another one.  We need to find room for two hutch tops, two living room chairs, a 6 ft. by 3 ft. shelf and a headboard.  It will take at least a least a three more tubs to hold all the stuff on the shelves, the picture albums (that will wait a little longer to get scanned) and the hutch inhabitants.  What items just need to go to a home that can give them the proper love and attention?

As for the spreadsheet and the number of line items, let me see.  48 - 21 (either completed or removed) = 27!!!!!  Oh, yes, plus, 20 = 47.  Yes, one less line item to get completed.  And my body is moving like it has moved heavy furniture, filled and moved about 10 tubs of stuff.  One week down, one line item off the list and one prescription of muscle relaxer refilled.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Monday and Froggy Goes a Courtin'

Last night we made a spreadsheet of tasks to complete before we feel we can put the house on the market.  The list has 48 line items.  Today we did 3 from the list and about 5 that were not on the list.  Guess that means that at this rate most of the list will be completed in 16 days.  If I were more energetic, I would fall out of my chair laughing at that thought.

If one analyzes the list, one notices things like rebuild the water feature "river"  That task alone will take 3 days and another 3 days just to recuperate!  But there are other less time demanding items on the list like, carry chair to garage.  That seems easy enough.  Unfortunately the first line item under 3rd garage is something along the line of move crap to have room to move more crap into the garage.  And while we are moving we are sorting.

I currently could not take anyone anywhere in my car.  The trunk is not full but is certainly almost there with items to go to two different organizations.  The back seat has contains items for two other locations.  The front passenger seat has stuff for three meetings this week.  Somehow tomorrow I will need to find room for a dish I am taking to a pot luck for sorority.  It is, also, secret sis revealing evening which means gifts to carry along as well as the TBD pot luck dish.  Pretty sure the dish will be lucky to get made here at home.  It may be made by the lucky folks at the deli.

In the midst of all the ruckus of getting the house ready for selling, spring has finally sprung.  The annual ritual has begun, our resident frogs are courting.  The water feature is the perfect place for Mr. Froggy to sit and serenade all the Ms. Frogs in the neighborhood.   Before long our pond will have sacks of eggs, then barely visible hatch-lings.  Tadpoles will follow.  That is what few that are not consumed by the hungry goldfish still in the pond.  Eventually a few frogs will make it out of the water to sing for another year.

Sitting in my easy chair with the window open Mr. Froggy's serenade is lulling my mind into a state of calmness.  The thought occurs to me of the next owners of Mr. Froggy.  Will they enjoy his serenade or just think of it as an irritating noise?  I know tonight I took note of one more unexpected ritual that will not be part of our lives.  Well, at least not until we build a habitat for Mr. or Ms. Froggy's Texas cousin.

One of Mr. Froggy's cousins singing a love song.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Moms the Word

From her womb we all emerge
Pushed into a world of uncertainty
But always held in her heart by love.

Momma, seated surrounded by two daughters, two sons in law and one grandson

My Mom's mother.

Daddy's mother, Anna Mae, along with his dad, Aunt Cordie and her husband, circa 1915.

Momma is the stylin' lady in the spectator heels.  I am next to her with sister Suzie in the back.  Aunt Opal is in shorts and Granny Chandler is on the steps.  Yella, my dog from my Uncle Claydie is behind me.

Momma, me and Aunt Opal snuggled together on a ski lift during our "Yellowstone Trip" in the summer of 1950.

Momma sitting in her favorite chair in her living room in her precious home in Allen, Tx.  Did I mention she is a fourth generation Texan that thinks all that cession talk is, "Just plain stupid, damn Republicans/".?

Saturday, May 11, 2013


We made the monthly trip to the recycling and brush drop site that is located about 3 miles from our house.  We had several bags of weeds that had been pulled from the back yard beds over the last few weeks.  In an effort to get the backyard in selling shape shrubs needed trimming.  I pretty much demolished the last barberry bush.  The fothergilla, a shrub, that the folks at Litton gave me when I was on a medical leave in the mid 90's had died.   So its remains along with trimmings from a butterfly bush,an American cranberry and general leaf and limb residue are all now safely being recycled into compost and mulch.  The empty trailer was then filled with wood mulch to be spread after we returned home.

This really is the site near our home.

Funny how a project can come to a screeching halt because of something as simple as a cart full of Christmas lights.  Yes, there are three large spools of lights we use to line all the beds, walkways and pond features in our back yard.  Now to get the silly things into some sort of box.  Who knows if they will make the move or just be given to the folks at the Habitat Store to recycle to another crazy about Christmas person.  In any case the trailer is still full of the mulch until a suitable solution to the lights is found.

Anyway, before going outside to work in the yard, I was able to get John Roger's room mostly depersonalized in the visible areas.  Not gonna concern myself with stuff in the cabinets.  If folks open drawers, they will find several that are empty so I will leave a few things just to give the nosey Nellie's something to see.  Hummm, do I dare hide a picture of a belly dancer in one of the drawers?  That makes me smile just to think about it.

Monday will be a weeding session for the front beds. A small amount of shrub shaping is all that is needed this year for the front.  Those two tasks along with some flower plantings in pots for pops of color at the front door should have the front ready for power washing.  Of course the windows will need washing before moving into the back yard.  The back yard promises to be the biggest challenge this next week.

Oh well, at the end of this day I can now look back and know a lot was accomplished today.   In addition to all the yard waste, plastics, glass, tin and aluminum cans we took to recycling there are now about 8 trash bags of clothes ready to recycle.  We will never again fit into those size clothes so time to give to the homeless men, women and teens in the various shelter in Springfield.  Yes, this has been a day of recycling.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Obsessive Doubts

Yesterday my life was not like a box of chocolates, more like a sandwich.  A wrap up Mission Blitz meeting in the morning was followed by real estate persons in our home.  The day ended with a visit to the mission out-reach team meeting at church.  God stuff, self stuff, God stuff, like I said a sandwich.  Pajama time was about 8:30 and finally into bed about 11.

Three o' clock A.M. found me up for a bladder empty then back to bed.  Sleep was pushed aside by the thoughts of all that needed to be done to even begin to get the house and yard ready for showing.  Lying there next to a soundly sleeping Gene, my thoughts were first of why we had even moved to Missouri.  I know in 1975 I pushed for it as I saw my husband yearning for his Ozarks.  And now I know I am pushing for this move to Austin as I yearn to be near our son and grandsons.  Were either of these moves really what the Creator had in mind for our life journey I thought prayerfully?  My thoughts drifted back to tasks not expecting an immediate answer.  Answers to my questions to the Creator do not usually come quickly.  Sometimes it is days, weeks, seemingly never or worse yet an answer I do not want to accept.  

This morning as anyone prone to tension headaches might expect, I awoke with a tense neck and body.  Gene was up first and I begged him to make some of his good coffee.  As I lay in bed I looked out our bedroom window at the garden.

View from inside my bedroom into back yard.

There is the clematis in bloom.  The last clematis I would ever buy I told God.  Yes, one day I actually stood in the garden center coveting the clematis, visualizing it growing and covering the arbor.  I had planted so many clematis and other plants only to watch them languish and die.  I had tried to keep them alive.  I would move the plants to a different spot to see if they would be happier.  Several did in fact love their new home and flourished.  But never the clematis. 

I promised God that day in Lowe's garden center if it would grow I would never buy another.  And if it died I would accept the fact I was not to have clematis in my garden.  That was in 2006.  The arbor is still not covered by the clematis.  The clematis barely climbs beyond 2 to 3 feet each year but it has survived and never fails to bloom each spring.  There is a whispered answer on each petal

Yesterday the Realtor told us we had 3 strikes against selling the house quickly.  # 1, my beloved garden.  # 2 all the wallpaper.  # 3 all the stuff in the house.  I had watched enough HGTV to already know these things in my head.  But then in the middle of last night I started thinking about all that garden and stuff.  They are a part of my essence, our essence!  Our garden, our decorating style and our stuff, our life in this house for the last twenty plus years.  There are plants in the ground from friends.  There is a plant my son sent for Mother's day a few years back.  There are live Christmas trees from 3 different Christmases.  There had been two others but they died.  There are the daffodils and peonies from Edna's garden.

And inside our home is stuff.  My dear Lord is there stuff!   An old upright piano my older sister's learned to play, double barrel shot gun from my great grandfather, paintings done by my sister, two friends and a deceased sister in law.  There are probably 50 photo albums.  The RCA Victorla on which Gene remembers watching his grandfather play records for him.  A rocker with mismatched runners belonging to Gene's other grandfather and the list goes on including my Little Golden book collection from my Aunt Opal.  Stuff from generations of Rogers, Jones, Adcocks and Harness line our walls, shelves and table tops.  An attic with Star Wars, Rescue!, baby bed and other items used for and by our son.  There is a trunk with posters from his teen years.  Oh, my, all the stuff.

But this life is not about the past I keep reminding myself.  It is about the now and the hopes of the future.  The future in the eyes of grandsons, nieces, nephews and their children.  So after breakfast I began the task of just putting away items used in last Saturday's party.  Gene began going through the eternal pile of papers on his roll top desk.  The desk I bought for him with the first bonus for individual outstanding work I received from Litton.  I continued gathering, organizing and straightening just to have a starting place for the sorting, removing, giving away and selling.  My emotions were running high.  A call to a friend who loves canning to ask if she would like to have Gene's mom's canning jars found me in sobs.  I will keep one jar I decided.  Just one.

I stopped to spend some time reading the daily devotional at The Upper Room.  And there was that same Creator that let the clematis bloom this morning.  Answering my 3 A. M. prayer.  Reminding me that disciples leave behind boats, careers and everything to follow the call.  A call with a different purpose.

"But “the one who calls you is faithful” and will give us the grace we need to change (1 Thess. 5:24)."

My obsession has been my home, my garden.  Now it is time to move to the next obsession whatever it may be.  If you would like to see what others obsess about, pop on over the Gretchen's at Second Blooming and give yourself a treat!

Second Blooming

Some of my obsession just coming to life this spring.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Moving Along

As I had mentioned a few times lately in this spill my guts blog, we are planning a relocation to a different state to be closer to our son and his family.  Two big projects at church had our attention for the last couple of months.   I always drag Gene along for the ride and his invaluable support when I am involved in a project.  Love him so much.  Saturday was the bigger of the two projects for us personally.

How big?  Small by many standards, 112 people,  plenty big for us.  Coordinating an event from beginning to end can be daunting no matter how much great support there is.  I feel the weight of an events success while developing a theme and acquiring a program, working with folks to develop a theme appropriate menu, buying groceries for the entrees, helping with the food prep, coordinating the room setup and decorations and then finding folks to serve and cleanup the dishes.  As the theme was centered around learning more about 3 Latin American countries the gym was transformed (sort of) into a hacienda patio complete with a fish pond and fountain.   My good Gene made the portable pond and set it up on Friday.  After the event was complete, there was then the cleanup.

Sunday was busy enough there was no down time to begin the recovery of our bodies.  Monday found us two "aged wine" folks pretty much wiped out.  Best we could muster were meals and some phone calls setting up appointments.  Tuesday morning opened with the "fence guy" stopping by to start the process of the needed repairs.  Cross off one of the bigger projects we will do.  Let the "fence guy" take care of it.

There are still several little things to take care of in the house and yard.  There are a couple of big ones in the backyard even with "fence guy" replacing the two rotted support posts.  Today the kind gentleman from United Van Lines did a walk through and gave a quote for moving.  I may have to sell a kidney to pay the movers but it will be worth it to not pack and move ourselves.  Sure we will pack some things but I am pleased to help the moving business economy.

Thursday will be our day to have our first contact with the real estate agents.  A friend works for the same company and is steering us to one of the best teams.  Looks like I will have some "staging" help with the house.  I have already taken down and packed 2/3 of the family photos.  Even have the holes patched where they were hung.  So it looks like things are moving along........

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


Ping is a word that once was a sound.  For many years, the word has come to describe the action of checking network connections.  Now there are services and programs that will automatically perform the function.  When I worked in a CAD CAM department, the computer engineer and IT folks would ping different departments if there were complaints of data malfunctions.

Now that I write this blog I check the hit count just to see if there is any interest.  I dislike that there are computers set up just to ping blogs in an attempt to get malware into our real blog visitors digital devices.  I do not like those vampire, yandex and filmhill pings/hits in the hit count for my blog.  I may not write anything other than something that is running through my mind.  If a human or other form of life visits my blog, great.  I would like to take a ping pong paddle to the backside of the crummy people the have nothing better to do than try to destroy.  That is just not nice.  

Monday, May 6, 2013


After being in the middle of planning an event and then executing the event with the help of dozens of people there is a let down.  My 1995 Lincoln apparently is tired after all the work, too.  Yesterday when I rolled down the window on the driver's side, there was this strange sound.  Okay, I sort of just ignored the noise.  At least I ignored it till it was time to roll it up and the darling  glass fell inside the door.

So now I have a choice of either of four things

  1. spending too many dollars on a window that works in a car that has 211,000 miles
  2. spending a few dollars on a roll of clear tape and just taping the window into the door
  3. spending too many dollars on a replacement door of a different color, you know the white trash look
  4. spending some dollars and letting a mechanic place the window in a condition that it at least stays closed
It looks like one of last year's unfulfilled Christmas wishes may get filled this year.  You know the one where I wished for a new car.  Well, that will not happen for the one I wished for last year.  I will be pretty happy with a Ford hybrid that gets really good mileage.  Sometime in the next few months, maybe......

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Bucket List

The Spin Cycle blog challenge this week is bucket list.  Dang, I am being challenged to think of things I still want to do.  I really do not think that getting up from a chair or floor without groaning or leaving a noxious contrail should be on a bucket list.  Things that have fallen out of my bucket are a fairly large pile by now.  But I can still dream of a few things I would like to do:

  1. Spend another Mother's Day with my 94 year old mom.
  2. Visit the British Isles for a few weeks.
  3. Visit Wisconsin and South Carolina, the last two of the 48 contiguous states not seen.
  4. Ride the Amtrack through the northwest US with my husband.
  5. Visit my cousins and friends along the West Coast.
  6. See a woman elected President of the US.
  7. Touch my toes with ease again.  It's possible with a little work!
  8. Tour the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.
  9. Send my husband and son to culinary classes and enjoy what they learn
  10. Have a video project entered in a film competition.
  11. Type on the laptop without dragging my thumb across the touchpad and wiping out wha

You Know You're Too Busy When

You know you're too busy when:

  • You go to a meeting and no one else is there because you are a week early
  • You go to a wedding and the wrong bride walks down the isle.  And you are in every picture of the attendants coming down the isle.  And you sneak out with the photographer to go to other churches in town looking for the right bride.  Return home and find your son and husband laughing because they figured out you went to the right church, just the wrong day.  This is after your washer broke while you are attempting to get ready for the (wrong) wedding, a business trip, a sister's visit.  The washer breaking forced you to gather wet laundry and go to a laundromat.  Then the laundromat floods and you just pay the laundromat person to finish your washing and drying after the flood is cleared up.  You drive/fly home because you are sure you are late for the wedding.  You dress for what turns out to be the wrong wedding in the dark so as not to awaken you third shift working husband.  Later for the right wedding your husband did not approve your buying a new outfit for the real wedding even after you explained you had already worn that outfit to a wedding and everyone would know.  Except you really did not know but one other person at the wrong wedding.
  • You forget the rescheduled doctor's appointment a second time
  • You forget why you called someone when they ask how they can help you.
  • You forget which of the three events you are working on and and take all the wrong notes and reports for that meeting.
  • You no longer care how the event turns out.
  • Your ability to separate reality from fantasy is compromised.  You know like when you are thinking your home will sell soon enough that you can get that great rental property that just showed up on Zillow.
  • You can no longer do multiplication without a calculator.  Well, you can but the results needed to be verified with a calculator.  
  • You forget to get the card for Youngest grandson's birthday in the mail in time.
  • You escape from reality by blogging.