Exceedingly Mundane

tidbits of random nothingness

Jan-29-15

January, The Second Half

posted by Stace

Let’s see, the second half of January is proving to be about as busy as the first part :)

We’ve had three funerals so far this month… I think I mentioned in the previous post about losing both Tim’s cousin’s husband (Perry) and my brother-in law Don’s mother Margaret. And now we’ve gone to one for Bobby, a guy from our Sunday School group at church. Been a tough year so far…

We had our annual homeowners meeting for the new subdivision on the 14th. The dues keep going up every year, things are not being done the way the residents want, since the builders/developers are the only ones on the board and make all the decisions and decide how the money is spent that is collected from each and every homeowner. It was very eye-opening and we learned… a LOT! Apparently, they say now that the dues will hold steady for at least a year or two, and within the next year or so, when the last houses are built and sold in this subdivision, the developers will turn over the board to the actual people who live here. Sheesh.

We had a family get-together at our house on the 17th, for Tim’s dad’s side of the family. Two of Mitchell’s siblings didn’t make it, Uncle Hilton and Aunt Annie Myrle, and we hated not seeing them. Tim’s parents, brother Terry, Emi, Lazarus, Brittany and David came, (Mark and family didn’t make it), Aunt Judy, Candy, her daughter Brooke and her two kids (Peyton and Aubrey), Jan and Steven and their boys (Justin and his girlfriend Keily and Turner), and Pat and Carl and their kids (Megan, Emily and Tyler) all got to come though, so it was great! We hadn’t seen everyone in a while and it was great catching up and visiting with everyone :)

Mitchell and his sister Judy who did come to the get-together:

After everyone left, I cleaned up a bit, then Kathryn and Jeremy dropped off Katelyn and Sam for us to hang out with while they attended a party. We had such a great time! We pulled out a bunch of puzzles and sat at the island and played with them for hours! We did s’mores in the fireplace (note to self: Even if Katelyn and Sam SAY they want more than one s’more, they won’t eat but one, LOL!) and generally had a great time :D

I shoved the camera in Tim’s hand and asked nicely for him to take a photo with me and the kids, since, in looking back through iPhoto, there are very very VERY few pictures of me:

Now I know why, I really don’t take very good pictures, but at least this one is tolerable, LOL! :)

OK, let’s see…. Tim is in another spate of working at night on the weekends. So far in January, he’s had to work three Sunday nights (starting at 11 PM) and one Saturday. One of those Sunday nights, he didn’t get to bed until 4:30 AM, which really messes up his sleep and work schedule for several days after that.

We had a funeral visitation for Bobby from church last Friday night. After that, we went to a fairly new Chinese restaurant (we had been once before and Tim loved it, I liked it ok) named Fortune and had dinner. Tim got spicy Mongolian beef and I had sauteed shrimp (first time I’ve ever had shrimp with the heads on). It was cold that night so we got a huge bowl of egg drop soup. It was delicious :)

We finally saw “Unbroken” at the theater this past Saturday. I had read the book over the Christmas/New Years holiday and knew that it was going to be hard for me to watch. It was actually easier than I thought to watch, still hard, but it helped that it was sort of broken up between his earlier times and Olympic running with all the war stuff. Tim wants to go see “American Sniper” next, and I know I will not be able to go see it. First, I have a rule about not watching R-rated movies (which no one seems to understand and accept, although Tim tolerates it from me), I don’t like to put that garbage or violence or language or sex or whatever into my brain and life. Even though we’ve heard great things about the movie, I just can’t do it :( Poor Tim!

Let’s see… I made a loaf of monkey bread and took to Sunday School this past Sunday. I’m trying to bake and take something every 2-3 weeks. Everything so far has been sweet. One of the guys in our group keeps saying he is going to bring sausage and biscuits, so I don’t want to “steal his thunder” and bring that. I need some ideas of other stuff to take and make (I’ve done cranberry bread and monkey bread so far). It can’t be like a hot casserole, since we do things out of order, we go to church first and then Sunday School, so I have to carry the food into the sanctuary (another class meets in our room while we are in church service). Anyway, really enjoying our Sunday School group, as well as the sermon series we are having at church (Still on “First Things First”).

This week has been fairly busy as well. Tim worked Sunday night, then had to get up early Monday morning and go to the doctor. He got a good report though, so that really helped. He was really expecting his blood pressure to be up again this year and the doctor to prescribe him medicine, but it was good and he came out without new pills :) I cleaned house all day Monday and made a new recipe for crockpot potato soup. Tuesday, I did a lot of laundry and more cleaning, and our neighbor Bob came over and brought me a beautiful daffodil (we had taken him some homemade soup Monday night, and he apparently really enjoyed it, LOL!). Late Tuesday, Gail came to the house in time for supper. I made turkey piccata, roasted veggies, tried roasting radishes (Success!), mashed potatoes and a new recipe for a crockpot cherry cobbler. It was all really good! Wednesday, Gail and I got up and went shopping all day - two different Home Goods, TJ Maxx, Sam’s, Target, Walmart along with lunch at Chick-Fil-A. We came home and met Elizabeth, and Tim who had gone to play golf, and we all ate some of the leftovers in our fridge. Elizabeth stayed and visited a while and Gail spent the night and left early Thursday morning. Tim got up at 5:20 for the first meeting of the big men’s Bible study at church, called Band of Brothers. He really enjoyed it! Me, I’m such a light sleeper that I had a hard time going back to sleep, so I wasn’t fond of getting woken up so early :(

Photo from this week, the daffodil our new neighbor brought over, it’s already drooping and starting to look withered - any tips on keeping daffodils inside in a pot? I hate to kill the beautiful thing with my horrible black thumb that I have with plants like this! LOL! :D

We’re having unseasonably warm weather across the middle part of this week. High’s in the 60’s for a couple of days, and right now, it’s 73 degrees and sunny. I imagine Tim will play golf again today! He’ll start getting spring fever soon and once the time changes in early March, he’ll be playing most every day of the week!

Got a busy weekend coming up - we’ll go food shopping Friday night for the Super Bowl party we are having Sunday. Zack is coming to play golf with Tim on Saturday and then stay this weekend (his girlfriend Kelli Grace and her family are camping at a park nearby). Then, we’ll have most of Tim’s family and Tony here on Sunday. Can’t wait! I don’t care a whit about either team, in fact, I dislike both teams pretty much (Seattle Seahawks vs New England Patriots). So it will be nice to visit and not worry about the outcome of the game, LOL!

Hope everyone is having a great day! :D

Jan-12-15

In Search of a Monday Meme

posted by Stace

Or any meme for that matter! They used to be all the rage out in BlogLand, but they appear to be very few left. And of the ones I have found for Monday or any other day, there are always questions that don’t apply to me, or else I would be answering the same thing every.single.time. So I guess I’ll stick with regular blogging and see how that pans out :)

Speaking of blogging, I’m coming up on my TEN YEAR anniversary of my blog. Hard to believe, but when I go back in my archives, I started in February of 2005. Good golly Miss Molly, where did the time go? I’ve taken a lot of breaks, but find it’s a great way to keep up with what is going on with us, so I keep coming back.

Ok, back to the original topic, today is Monday. We are zipping through January, hard to believe it’s already almost half way through the month. Today is a grey, bleak day. It rained some yesterday and quite a bit last night, but had mostly ended this morning. Tim had to work last night, for about 3 or so hours until the wee hours of the morning. He started a new fitness challenge at work, to log steps walked with a pedometer, so he wanted to go walking at lunch. Yippee! First time he’s walked with me in at least a year, maybe two. I showed him the route I had mapped out in the new subdivision, and we had a nice long walk during his lunch hour today. That makes me all kinds of happy :)

I’ve got some ham and bean soup in the crockpot today. I tasted the beans a while ago and they were still hard as a rock. I guess I’ve added too much salt, got old beans from the bin at Whole Foods or something, because I soaked them all night long and threw them in the crockpot this morning. I guess we’ll eat leftovers if the soup doesn’t turn out.

We had a busy weekend. We went to Greenwood for the funeral for Don’s mom Margaret on Saturday. It was nice to see Trent, Grayson and Henry though, since we missed seeing them at New Years. Just a really sad occasion though :( We stayed to eat and visit, but the church ladies ran out of food, so we stopped at Sonic and picked up fast food on the way home. After we got home, I made a loaf of cranberry bread to take to Sunday School. Sunday was busy with Sunday School, church and going to Kroger afterwards. After that, I cooked lunch (pepperoni crescents, really easy and so not healthy) and then Tim took a long nap and watched the NFL playoff games. I cooked supper, thereby breaking my rule that I don’t like cooking on Sundays :(

Currently weather: as stated, grey and bleak

Currently reading: Rachel by Jill Eileen Smith

Currently watching on TV: the new Agent Carter … I need to watch Downtown, I’m already two weeks behind, but don’t seem to have much time lately for catching up on the DVR

Currently Cooking: ham and bean soup today, potato soup later in the week, winging a couple of days

Week Ahead: have to take Suzanne to the airport, get my hair cut, make a run to Sam’s for food for the family get-together we are hosting this Saturday, take Tim’s suit to the dry cleaners and a few more errands. I’d much rather stay home, but these things have to get done!

And a photo from the weekend, I made a new recipe Friday night for a skillet chocolate chip cookie cooked in a cast iron skillet. It was DELICIOUS!

More next time, hope everyone is having a great day!

Jan-8-15

Frozen Pipes!

posted by Stace

I wasn’t going to blog again this soon, but this one had to get documented!

I thought when you had a new house, you didn’t have to worry about things like pipes freezing! Wrong. At our old house, we never had the pipes freeze, not in the 21 years that I lived there. We never had to leave faucets dripping or had a burst pipe. But, we had a different kind of water heater and different piping (apparently… I’m learning a lot today!) at the old house. This new house has a tankless water heater in the attic and instead of copper pipes, it has some kind of flexible pvc pipe, but they are exposed, so they freeze. I just got back from an emergency run to Home Depot to buy pipe insulation, and hopefully Tim can wrap more pipes in the attic tonight. Then maybe this won’t be an ongoing problem. It was really weird, when I woke up, some things worked and some things didn’t. Two showers wouldn’t come on, and one would. The hot would not come on in most sinks, but the cold in a couple. Tim had left several faucets dripping last night, and that seemed to help some. Also, I think he had wrapped a few pipes a couple of months ago, I know we bought some insulating things a while back, probably before Thanksgiving. Anyway, it took till 1:45 PM this afternoon for the last one to thaw. I hope they don’t freeze again tonight, or again for that matter :)

To be fair, we’re having extremely cold weather. Last night, it dropped to 13 degrees here, which is inordinately colder than normal. Today, the high is supposed to only be 33 or 34 degrees this afternoon, and so far, at 4:00 PM, it did get to 34. I was out this morning going to the doctor and it’s funny how much warmer 34 degrees feels compared to the 16 it was when I left the house!

I’m glad to have THAT doctor visit over for another year. I just have to hear back from the tests and I should be in the clear. Most of my bloodwork and numbers were really good - blood sugar, HDL/LDL, cholesterol were all good. My blood pressure was slightly elevated, 141/80, but I’m chalking that up to the pipes freezing and me being rattled all morning trying to get things done here with hardly any water. LOL! :D

Later, gaters!

8:00 PM UPDATE: Well, Tim got up in the attic after work and it was very slow going trying to wrap the pipes with the insulating sheaths I bought at Home Depot (it seems to be the way the plumber guy did the lines in the attic, he is very upset about how it was done). He was very frustrated, both with work and the water/pipes issue, so he declared he wanted to go and get rolls of insulation and try that. So, we went to the new Schlotsky’s and I got treated out to dinner (I had a california avocado flatbread and he had chicken and dumpling soup and half a sandwich, it was good!). Then we got more insulation, and now he’s back up in the attic trying the rolls. Fingers crossed! Already below freezing again, 26 degrees, so things could start freezing again :(

Jan-7-15

So Far in January…

posted by Stace

Let’s see, we are seven days into the new month and new year. So far, we have…

* shoved all the Christmas decorations back into the attic. I haven’t mentioned it before, LOL, but we have a great new house. And that includes, a great big ole attic! It’s MUCHO larger than at our old house and a ton of it is floored, giving this packrat a lot of places to stash things. And, Tim loves his bigger garage, we got the extra third bay so he’d have places to store all his tools and guy stuff.

* went over to my sister Suzanne’s and Tim hooked up some electronics for her, helped her with computer and printer stuff, hung some stuff for her, etc. Just your basic 8 hours of free manual labor, LOL!

* in getting ready for Church Sunday morning (yippee, new sermon series entitled “First Things First” focusing on prayer and nice shiny new Sunday School books, that always makes me very very happy!), Tim got out the iron and ironing board to touch up his shirt. And proceeded to drop the iron on his foot. His toe was very sore for a couple of days and he hobbled around for a day or so, but it doesn’t appear to be broken and is healing now. Thank goodness!

* I took my sister to her colonoscopy appointment yesterday. Which required me to get up at 5 AM, which is not something I either like or enjoy. :) The things we do for the people we love. So, after we got her taken care of (Starbucks run for her right after, nothing for me, then a baked potato delivered to her later in the day, since she needed to eat something and not just sleep), I ran a lot of errands. I’m back to working on getting new stuff for the house. Fun! See photo below for one of my purchases :D

* We have two funerals/visitations to go to this week. Tonight, we go to one for Perry, Tim’s cousin Fannie’s husband who passed away. And Saturday we go north for Margaret’s funeral, my brother-in-law Don’s mother. She had been in ICU for over three weeks, and the family finally decided to take her off the ventilator. Margaret was wonderful woman and a vibrant, loving, joyful, thoughtful member of their family. I have been blessed to know her for over 40 years and she will be sorely missed.

* I’m trying to get back into reading. More on that in another post. Doing my first-ever chronological read of the Bible.

* This time tomorrow, I should be a happy camper. I have my annual check-up with THAT girlie doctor (had to reschedule from December, my appointment rolled around when I had the sickness and was running fever). I’m always happy when it’s over and I don’t have to think about going for another year :)

And finally, a couple of random photos, since I have my shiny new Mac and am back able to post photos:

I finally found some cute new baskets yesterday for my mudroom openings!

And, my old Kindle keyboard died back in October 2013, after a faithful daily use of four years. I ordered a new Paperwhite that night, but never got around to getting a case. I just got this one in from Amazon, it looks like an old book, I love it :D

And P.S. That last photo looks blurry but I am just too lazy to go retake the photo, size it down, transfer it over and try again. Gotta get a move on!

Jan-4-15

December was a blur

posted by Stace

December went by in the blink of an eye!

After we were both sick at Thanksgiving and I was basically down for the count the first week of December, I spiraled into a mild panic about getting everything done. But Tim was right (as usual), we got most everything done, and it all worked out okay. :)

Tim took off his one day early in the month and we knocked out most of the shopping. He’s great about getting most of the guy gifts, and then trying to help me with all the girls. We stopped for lunch at his choice, Raising Cane’s (fried chicken strips, delicious but not overly healthy, a fairly common theme for us in the month of December, LOL!) I was able to start wrapping after that, along with all of the gifts I had ordered from Amazon. The carriers (UPS, FedEx) have finally learned where we live, and we are no longer missing deliveries like we did when we first moved here (so many packages didn’t make it and were returned, with UPS saying, address unknown; the down side to being in a totally new area and street). We had two Christmas trees this year, but I only wrapped presents and stuck under the new 9′ tree in the keeping room. We sent out cards, but seem to get fewer and fewer every year. I guess people just don’t do cards as much as they did a generation ago. I baked cookies and made treats and took to all the new neighbors. We had a great Sunday school party a week before Christmas - great food, great fellowship, had fun playing charades and singing Christmas carols.

We had our traditional three Christmases - one with Tim’s family on the Saturday before Christmas, one for ourselves (first in the new house!) on Christmas Eve and then with Gail and family on Christmas Day at her house. Tim and I got up on Christmas Eve, had our once yearly Christmas sticky buns and coffee and juice and then opened our presents to each other. Tim got some gadget-y gifts from me like a bluetooth car code reader, an iGrill mini, and then golf clubs he picked out. He got me a beautiful charm bracelet, a gold long tiered necklace, some earrings and this shiny new MacBook Pro I’m typing this blog post on!. After we finished our presents, we had Suzanne over to hang out and have our meal - Tim grilled ribeyes for him and Suzie and I had a nice piece of salmon, baked sweet potatoes, salad, and some acorn squash. We went to the early Christmas Eve service at church and it was candlelit and just beautiful. Suzanne came back after her early service, and even though it’s tradition for me to watch “It’s a Wonderful Life” on Christmas Eve, Suzie had just seen it (for the FIRST time) a few days before, so we watched my other favorite Christmas movie, I had just watched it the day before, “The Bishop’s Wife”. We missed my Dad a lot this year, my first without my daddy and my first without both of my parents. I don’t like being an orphan :(

A couple of photos… Tim plopping out our sticky buns:

Sticky Buns

Tim with his new bluetooth code reader for the vehicles:

Bluetooth reader

Stacy’s new wok (that I bought and wrapped, because I had no idea I was getting a Mac!):

Wok

Tim with his new golf clubs (Taylor MC irons):

My new Mac!

MAC

And my new charm bracelet, Tim picked out every single charm for me! So sweet :D

Charm Bracelet

After Christmas, we stayed busy but nothing spectacular. I did my annual day after shopping, stocking up on paper, bows, etc and also picked up a few decorating items for next year. I still need to get a lot of things for the house, both for everyday decor and for seasonal decor. We are still just using everything from the old house, and a lot of it is 15-20 years old. Yikes! I both love and get frustrated by trying to find things for the new house. I’m not Martha Stewart and I don’t have a great eye for things and how they will look in the house or go with other things I have or want to get. It’s a constant struggle for me. Tim helps a lot and it pains me greatly to admit that he is a better decorator than I am, and even though he’s COLOR BLIND, he’s better at putting things together. Sigh.

We got everything packed up and shoved back in the attic. I do love my Snow Village and Christmas decorations, and always hesitate on putting them away, but then once I get started, I get rolling and am ready to get it put away. There’s something about having the space back and ready to start a new year :)

We spent a quiet New Years Eve and New Years Day. We usually do, but this year more so than most. Tim worked New Years Eve, but they did let him go around 2 PM and so he ran to the golf course to play before dark. Don and Gail had spent the night before, headed to the hospital to see Don’s mom in ICU (as I type this, she has been in ICU for 3 weeks and on a ventilator for 2 weeks). They got here the night before NY Eve and we all went to the new Longhorn Steakhouse that opened up a couple of weeks ago, very good. New Years Eve, Don and Gail had thought they would go home, but ended up coming back here again to stay. Both Ole Miss and Ms State were in bowl games on New Years Eve (and both lost, very sad), and we watched the State game New Years Eve night. The new neighborhood proved to be a great place for watching fireworks! At the old house, we were in the city and fireworks were prohibited. Our here in the country, apparently not! Several people shot fireworks off and on from dark until midnight, including our new neighbor Brian and his family (2 doors down) who shot some great ones. I should have dug out my tripod and read about photographing fireworks. I took a lot of shots but most of them are not good. Anyway, New Years Day, we went to our new neighbors house for food and football, over to Tim and Becky’s across the street. Had a great time visiting with the new neighbors. We watched football most of the rest of the day (well, Tim did, I mostly read Unbroken, so I could try to finish it as he wants to go see the movie soon).

That hits the highlights I guess :) I would like to say I’d do better about blogging in 2015, but I’m not making any promises. I don’t think anyone reads this anymore anyway! :) I have so many things I want and need to do in the new year… I can easily see me letting blogging slip to the side again.

Dec-6-14

Thanksgiving and The Sickness

posted by Stace

Thanksgiving was a very busy, very fun week around our house :) Then, the sickness arrived, horrible black plague that it is!

Let’s see, on Tuesday before Thanksgiving, we had about 16 people here. Suzanne’s son Kirk, his wife Nichole, and their three kids came over to visit. Gail and Don came down from Indianola and stayed with us till Friday. Kathryn, Jeremy, Katelyn, Sam, Elizabeth and David also came over to visit. Suzanne brought pizza and everyone stayed to hang out and visit for a while. It was the first time we had met Isabella, Kirk’s youngest baby, and other than seeing Lillie and Max at the funeral, we had not seen them much, so great to see everyone and catch up.

Wednesday, Tim had the day off, so he and Don went to play golf. Gail and I ran to Kroger for some last minute items and then I spent the next 5 or 6 hours in the kitchen, cooking and preparing stuff for Thanksgiving. I made Chicken Santa Fe in the crockpot for supper for everyone, and Suzanne came back over to eat and visit. Kirk, Nichole and the kids had gone to see his dad. Thursday morning, Suzanne had a run, then came over, along with Elizabeth and David. We all had the normal - turkey (Got up at 6 AM and Tim got it in the smoker), Gail’s dressing, broccoli rice casserole, sweet potato casserole, cranberry sauce, rolls. Elizabeth made pumpkin pie for dessert and I tried a new recipe for pecan pie bars (the first attempt failed, but the second, with modifications, came out great). We all went to see Interstallar at Malco in the late afternoon. Then we came home and cranked up the fire pit for its grand inauguration and had cocoa and roasted marshmallows.

Tim and Don went to play golf again Friday morning, while Gail and I hung out here some, then went to get Margaret’s car over at Nancy’s house. We all got caught in traffic getting home (not Black Friday, but a bad wreck on the highway), and a little bit later, Don and Gail left going home and to the Lamb, Bass, Barger party. Tim collapsed when they left, and admitted he had been sick. He was sick all the rest of Friday, Saturday on his BIRTHDAY, Sunday and on into the next week, even though he worked every day and didn’t take a single hour of sick leave.

I went to Walmart on Saturday and picked up some Mucinex and a few items. I went back to Kroger Monday morning for more meds and some orange juice, clementines and a few things. I was already starting to feel bad Monday morning, but had to get up, since the Lowe’s repair guy was coming to look at the fridge (seal on the bottom freezer drawer has been leaking and holding water). By later Monday, I was running fever and feeling horrible.

We were both sick all week, so it wasn’t very merry around our house. Luckily, we had put up the Christmas trees (two, first time ever, since we had a short brand new one from the old house, and a new 9′ one for the new house, high ceilings) and the Snow Village before everyone came before Thanksgiving. When Tim got to feeling better later in the week, he hung the outside garlands and outside decorations for me. I didn’t feel like doing much of anything until Thursday or Friday. Friday afternoon, we had a new refrigerator delivered from Lowe’s. We had to get all the coolers out and unload everything and reload the new one, that job in itself wore me completely out! Tim took pity on me, plus rewarded himself LOL, by driving us to the gas station at the interstate and getting us Krystal burgers for supper. Hahaha, he loves them and I am still not up to cooking much (tried Thursday night and it was ok, I MELTED my plastic steamer basket that I had used for twenty years on an electric stove, I melted it to my aluminum pot on this new gas stove, sigh). So, I thought Krystal was a great idea!

Needless to say, with both of us sick, we’ve been sitting in our chairs in the keeping room, watching tv and movies. We had a free movie preview weekend around Thanksgiving and so we recorded a lot of movies on pay channels we don’t normally get. We’ve watched The Wolverine, Pacific Rim, The Book Thief, Red 2 and Tim watched Lone Survivor, The Escape Plan and A Good Day to Die Hard. We also caught up on most of our shows on the DVR :) Lots of tv time, snuggled up under blankets.

Today is Saturday and I’m still not feeling great. We are supposed to meet Mark, Amanda, kids and friends later today, they are in town for one of Abby’s cheer competitions. After that is over, we’re supposed to catch up with them and have supper, I hope neither one of us get them sick. AND, I hope we get to church tomorrow, we’ve been sick and haven’t been able to go the last two weeks :(

I need to get back into the habit of uploading photos, I know these posts are boring, just an online diary, but at least I’m going to try to keep up with everything going on :)

Nov-20-14

AWOL Again

posted by Stace

Well, I’ve been absent from my blog for another long period of time, like maybe 3 weeks? Things are just so busy and as much as I want to document them and capture them for my future sketchy memory, I just don’t seem to find the time to stop and blog. Sigh.

Let’s see… since the last time I blogged, we had a celebration for my niece’s birthday (Elizabeth), my sister Suzanne and we had a big crowd here for Halloween. Then the time changed and it became November and I thought I would have lots of time to get caught up on some stuff. Wrong.

Halloween was fun, but a bit disappointing to me in that even though we had a lot of friends and family here to hang out with and for Tim to take trick or treating, I stayed home and only had 2 or 3 trick or treaters. Even less than our old neighborhood :( I know we’re in a construction zone and in the back of the new subdivision, with no street lights, so I know why, but it was still disappointing to buy a half ton of candy and only have the doorbell ring 3 times :) Gail came the day before, and we went shopping and then cooked stuff on Halloween afternoon. She also helped me order curtains for the dining room windows that morning. Gail made Halloween bark and I made taco soup, mummy dogs, Boo biscuits and we had chips, drinks (witches brew and vampire juice) and hopefully everyone had as much fun as we did and enjoyed it. I think next year will be a lot better, most if not all of the houses should be built and we will hopefully be lit with street lights. Kathryn and Jeremy came with the kids, Katelyn was a Zombie and Sam was a star trooper (homemade costumes, they looked GREAT!). Suzanne and Elizabeth came too, and then Tony and Stephanie came and brought Rylan and Leila, and Jackie and Linda came too. This was the first time Linda had seen the house, since she didn’t get to come on moving day. It was great to see everyone and visit, and we hope that next years Halloween is even better :D

November started out cold, it was cold Halloween night and we had to turn the heat on, really early for us. We’ve had some cold patches and are just coming out of a really cold spell for the last week. Highs in the 40’s a couple of days and lows in the mid 20’s for mid November are really cold for us, and the rest of the country too.. I lost my geranium, basil and pepper plants to the frost, and am trying to keep the rest of my herbs alive on my screened in back porch. We FINALLY, FINALLY, got the starter keys to our two fireplaces on Friday 11/14, so we were able to make a fire. These fireplaces are very warm and efficient, nothing at all like the one in our old house, where it was vented and all the heat just went up the chimney. These are not vented and put out a ton of heat into the room, so we’ve really been enjoying the fireplaces on cold days and evenings. We bought a fire pit at Home Depot and Tim put it together, but we haven’t used it yet. I need to get a cover for it soon.

The weekend of November 8, Suzanne ran her first 10K and Tim and I went to cheer her over the finish line. A pretty cold morning, but she did great. It was Mistletoe Marketplace weekend, but I didn’t get to to go. Don and Gail came after the race so that Don could go with Tim to the PGA tourney, Sanderson Farms, at the Jackson Country Club (Zack got free passes and came to bring them to Tim, great to visit with him, he’s in his first semester of college). Gail and I went shopping and I got some boots, leggings and tunics at Steinmart. I still need a lot of new clothes, especially church clothes, which I went to look for but struck out on. Monday 11/10, I helped Suzanne all day, with her selling the Lexus and cleaning out her storage unit and moving everything to her apartment. Tuesday was Veterans Day and I hated that we still don’t have an American flag hanging at the new house. Still so much we want to do. Wednesday 11/13, I got my haircut and had an “incident”. The color started melting or something weird while I was under the dryer, and it dripped down all over my face and got in both my eyes. My eyes were burning so bad I really couldn’t see. They had to flush both my eyes for several minutes and try to stop the burning and stinging. I had problems with my vision for the next few hours, but thankfully it cleared up after a few more dousings of saline that I got Tim to help me with.

The weekend of 11/15 was fun but quiet for us. Tim finished putting up gutter guards on the house and raked leaves on Saturday, then we went shopping for bar stools. Got three black leather saddle back ones that look great under our new island. Sunday we went to church and Sunday School, but it was sparse, when we woke up it was about 36 degrees and raining steadily. It rained virtually all day Sunday and into the evening, a good soaking rain. We have turned the irrigation system off for the winter, so hopefully the grass and plants are established and make it through the winter.

We’ve been going round and round on issues with a Christmas tree. Long story short, we bought a new 7 1/2 foot one last year for the old house. We put it up early this year to see, as we were afraid, with the really high ceilings in the new house, it looks pretty puny. So we went and got a 9′ tree at Sam’s Club and brought it home. Unpacked it and it had 2 of the same section in it, which means it did NOT look good! Dealt with the customer service, who finally told me to take it back to Sam’s and exchange it, which we did. Thankfully, the new tree has all the right pieces and looks good. We’ve got the new one up in the keeping room (not decorated yet) and the old one in my craft room, one of the front windows (also not decorated, I won’t have enough decorations for both, so this one will stay empty, just lit for the front window effect). I have NEVER put up a Christmas tree before Thanksgiving and feel sort of bad, like we are robbing Thanksgiving or something. But we have so much else going on and I know it’s going to take me longer to decorate and figure out where to put things in the new house, so I’m getting a head start. Or so I tell myself!

This week has been busy, but nothing too spectacular. My mom’s 90′th birthday would have been on Monday. She’s been gone over 12 years and I still miss her every day, as I do my dad. This is going to be my first Thanksgiving and Christmas without my daddy, and it’s going to be hard. We’ll stay busy though, so that will help. I’ve tried to go birthday shopping for Tim but didn’t have a lot of luck. He is pretty hard to buy for :) I’m trying to get food and stuff for next week. We have another busy week coming up. My nephew Kirk, his wife Nicole and their kids are supposed to come visit Tuesday night, and then everyone will be here on Thanksgiving day. Gail and Don will hopefully come and stay at least one night with us, if not more. We love having company! We are really enjoying the new house and having people over, it’s great to have more room for everyone and not be as crowded as we were in the old house.

Lots going on and I didn’t get any photos uploaded and sized for the blog. I need to get better at that. I’ll try to blog more soon :)

Oct-28-14

Dear Diary, Part 2

posted by Stace

Yes, I’m doing it again. At least some blogging is better than nothing, right?!

The weekend of 10/17-19 was a very busy one as we celebrated my birthday multiple times. Tim took off Friday and we went shopping and out to lunch. I got some clothes and had a Hambrosia sandwich at Steak Escape. We met my side of the family at my favorite Chinese restaurant, Mr Chen’s. We came back to the new house (gotta stop calling it that!) and had a cake I had made on Thursday. Chocolate, with chocolate frosting, which would have been good, except that my OLDER sisters put a great big 5-0 in green dots on top and ruined it :( Saturday, my actual birthday, we got up and went to Tim’s parents house. His mom, Emi and Brittany surprised me when we got there, and they had the house decorated with pink and black balloons and lots of banners :) Linda made my special request, egg custard pie, which my mom used to make for me when I was a teenager and in my early 20’s. I hadn’t had one in probably 15 or 20 years and it was delicious! I quickly learned, however, that no one, not one single person in Tim’s family likes egg custard, so I will never ask for that again. We’ll stick to chocolate which I love equally as much (and most everyone will eat!) :D We visited all afternoon and headed home, fairly tired. Our neighbors, Becky and Francis, came over late and brought us cupcakes :) Sunday was church, and our Sunday School party. Come to find out that 10/19 is our co-leader Skip’s birthday, so we had chocolate cake again to celebrate :) I had a great birthday weekend. Tim got me a Kendra Scott necklace (thanks Gail!), some Bath and Body Works, and a 3 month subscription to Harry and David’s “Chocolate of the Month club”. That, by far, is my favorite gift! I was SO hoping for a dog, as I got Beau for my birthday in 2006, but Tim is not ready yet to talk about a dog… sniff sniff.

Monday (10/20), Tim was on vacation again all day (all that shopping Friday wore him out, LOL!). He cut the grass for the first time in the AM. Then his buddy Corey W got here about 11 AM for burgers. They had lunch and visited, and then left to go play golf at Lake Caroline. Ms Maridine, our friend and neighbor from the old subdivision, dropped off her computer for Tim to work on and visited just a few minutes. Suzanne was here a while in the afternoon to say goodbye before her trip Wednesday to Colorado. After Suzie left, I got in the kitchen and made a cake for Becky (new neighbor across the street) for her birthday.

Tuesday was my favorite kind of day, a “hanging out around the house” kind of day. We got Boo’d that evening (someone surprised us with a Halloween basket of goodies and we have to pay it forward to two other unsuspecting neighbors in the next 24-48 hours). Tim grilled out pork chops and salmon Tuesday evening, and I fixed pan roasted potatoes and salad to go with the meat.

Wednesday was another busy “be gone most all day” kind of day. I went to our old subdivision to return Ms Maridine’s computer that Tim fixed. I had to go to the tax collectors office and get a tag for the truck (even though we never received the renewal notice in the mail. Not getting mail is a whole other story, and not a good one). I also went to Walmart and Dollar Tree to fix Boo baskets for two neighbors. Boo’d Tim and Becky and Brian and Jill late afternoon, before they all got home from work (you’re supposed to Boo them when they are home, ring the bell and run, but that won’t work with our setup here, we can easily be spotted!). Tim started installing speakers in the ceiling of the keeping room Wednesday after work. I was staying out of the way, in our room trying to read on my Kindle and it started having problems, freezing, rebooting, having to download the complete library. Then would read a page or two and it would freeze again and start the cycle all over. I tried several things and finally got online about 10 PM and ordered a new Paperwhite, set to be delivered Friday. Sigh. I probably should have called Amazon customer service, but I just wanted it DONE and wanted a new one :)

Thursday was another mostly hanging out at home kind of day. Tim finished the speakers in the keeping room Thursday evening. He got his cooker out of the attic and boiled peanuts on the back porch, first time ever trying that (Note to self, 1 hr and 30 minutes in his cooker, lots of salt, turn off and let sit for 45-60 minutes). I made butternut squash soup in the crockpot (for me, Tim won’t touch the stuff) and then fixed breakfast food for both of us for supper. Our new neighbor Autumn brought over “Mississippi Roast” for Tim to try, which of course he did. I didn’t even think twice about making that recipe when I saw it online, because it has pepperoncini peppers in it, and I do NOT do peppers in any form :( Of course, now he’s wanting me to make him one!

Friday, we turned the irrigation system back on and ran the sprinklers in the yard for probably the last time. It’s been cool in the mornings most all week, been in the 40’s but it is warming up again. AT&T Uverse guy came in the AM to replace the wireless receiver in the keeping room that was not working. I waited impatiently all day for my new Kindle to arrive and it was FINALLY delivered by UPS at 3:35. I got it setup and going in about 10 minutes and am happy so far :) Tim offered to take us out to supper, so I didn’t have to cook! We went to Bill’s in Flora and tried it for the first time. Nice laid back atmosphere and good food. We both had fried catfish, next time Tim wants to try a steak and I may get either fried shrimp or shrimp and grits. We stopped at the new Livingston Mercantile on the way home to look around, as it has just recently opened. Bought a Sasparilla drink to try, something new. Came home and watched TV in the keeping room!

Saturday was a GREAT day! We slept a little late (getting too old to sleep very late, I keep waking up!) and then went for an exploratory walk in subdivision. We looked at several houses, stopped at the clubhouse to visit with Bradley, Kelly, Cage and Hutt. Then, we walked around the new area, just dirt before paving the new area behind us. We got back late morning, almost too late for breakfast, but I just called it brunch and fixed us some eggs, bacon and grits :) We hung out in the keeping room a while to watch some TV and part of the movie Frozen. We worked around the house and watched college football most all day. Tim fixed us some salsa and queso for snacking on, I miss his salsa!

Sunday was another busy day. Church, still in the series “Next: A Study of Joshua” and then our Sunday School group. We couldn’t stay and visit, had to hurry and drive downtown to Sal and Mookie’s and meet Don, Gail and Elizabeth for a birthday lunch for Elizabeth. We had extremely slow service and ending up being there over 2 hours. Gail and Liz shared a pizza, Don and Tim got burgers and I had a grilled shrimp panini. After, everyone came here for the strawberry birthday cake (Liz’s favorite) Gail brought and ice cream. Gail and Don stayed and visited until dark, and Liz stayed for the game and to spend the night. The Saints beat the Packers (finally, they seem to only win at home!) on Sunday Night Football. Elizabeth got up early and left for school from here. We are SO glad she is coming to see us more in the new house :)

Monday (10/27) was a busy day with contractors at the house. Tim is back on the bandwagon with getting sub-contractors back here for items on the punch list. The electrical contractors came and fixed the items on their list, including getting the oven moved so there was no gap. Josh the trim guy came and knocked out a lot of items, including my drying rod, robe hooks and towel bar. He also worked on the front door lock, but couldn’t get it fixed. I got online and pre-ordered the new Amazon Fire stick since we have the TV setup now in the keeping room, but it’s not a smart TV like we have in the great room. That will let us watch streaming stuff through Amazon Prime in the keeping room. It won’t come in until December, but I guess that will be like a Christmas happy! LOL! For supper, we had leftover pulled pork (from Sunday night’s Saints game I had fixed) along with the homemade buns I made Monday. Lots of leftovers here :)

Tuesday (today, whew, finally caught up!), I got up and went walking, about 3.4 miles. Right after I got back, the plantation shutter guys came. We had been waiting since mid-September on the shutters, and when they came, he said, “this can be good or this can be bad”. Tim was like, did we get blue shutters, trying to make a joke. Then he proceeded to tell us that they had ordered the wrong CUSTOM shutters, and would offer us a $500 discount if we would accept them; if not, we’d have to wait another 8 weeks for them to order them again. They were NOT what I wanted, not what we ordered, so we are going to wait. Sigh. Tim and I are both very disappointed :( The plumber also came by, to work on the drain problem with Tim’s copper sink. The insulation guy came by, but we couldn’t convince him we needed more insulation in one area of the attic, where the house seems to be getting a lot hotter. Sigh. I guess it’s always something with houses, new or old!

OK, I guess I’ll try once again to “regular” blog and not this daily running diary format. I don’t have a lot of hope in that right now! Halloween (this Friday) is going to be busy this year! We are so excited to be having a lot of people coming, should be about 17 of us if everyone comes who says they are. I’ll be busy with that Friday and probably doing last minute food shopping on Thursday. Not sure about this weekend, maybe I’ll do another diary post soon! :D

Oct-14-14

Dear Diary

posted by Stace

I keep promising myself I will actually blog, and here I am again, just doing a snippet-a-day diary-of-our-life blog post. Things are still just zipping along, with not a lot of time to do things like read, blog, catch up on the DVR, etc. Oh well, maybe in January! LOL!

Let’s see, last week was another blur. Thankfully, I had a draft post started, where I could jot down tidbits every day or so. Here’s what I came up with:

*Monday (10/6/14) I went grocery shopping at Kroger. When I got back, the carpenter was here, replacing all 4 screws in every drawer in the house (except for the two that they managed to get right). I found the screw issue when I started to line drawers, and nearly cut my finger on a screw sticking out of the side. Every drawer now has holes where the screws came through, but at least no one will cut a finger now when they reach inside a drawer. For supper, I tried something new, a chicken parmesan meatloaf, along with mashed potatoes and salad.

* Tuesday, I was home all day, cleaning, doing laundry and I probably unpacked a box or two. :D For supper, we had sausage dogs with peppers and onions, with oven fries and fruit. Tim stayed up till 2 AM installing the shower door in guest bath. It’s a bit short, but looks great! He’s a much better worker than anyone who worked on this house! LOL!

* Wednesday was a very busy day. I had a haircut at 9:30 AM, then I met Gail for a few minutes, before we went to Hamil’s to meet up with Suzanne, Tim and our cousin Scott and his wife Karen. Now, that probably sounds normal to most people. For Tim, seeing cousins is an everyday thing, he grew up with like 27 first cousins. But for me, I had never met any of my cousins. My dad was estranged from his only brother, and for years, I didn’t even know his kids names. The youngest is Scott, who is older than me but younger than my middle sister Suzanne. He and his wife drove down from Colorado to see parts of the South and visit places his dad had grown up. I think he was as curious about us as we were about him! It was WONDERFUL to meet him, and I hope both his dad and mine would be glad that it finally happened after all these years :) After a long lunch visiting with Scott and Karen, Gail, Suzanne and I left to go shopping (we went to Barnes and Noble, Walmart, and the dollar store). I got home late, but made a quick supper here for us and Suzanne (roast beef paninis with salad and chips), while Gail went to see Sam for his 7th birthday. After that, Gail came here to visit with us and Suzanne and stayed overnight, leaving early Thursday AM for her Bible study. See, busy day!!!

*Thursday was a recovery day! From being gone so much on Wednesday, I was craving being home. I did laundry, cleaned house, and spent the afternoon making beef stew and homemade bread for supper.

*Friday, Zack and Kelly stopped by mid-afternoon on their way to the fair, and Tim left to play golf at Deerfield. After he finished playing golf and came home to clean up, we drove to Ridgeland to meet Suzanne for supper at Papito’s Mexican, then we all made a quick run to Sam’s for a few things.

*Saturday, Tim had an early morning tee time, so I stayed home to pick up the house, and then do more unpacking. Tim came home for a late lunch (leftover sausage dogs), then we both got out in the back yard and worked on raking leaves. We watched the MS State game after that (they beat #2 Auburn and are now the #1 team in the country, something that has never happened!). We made nachos for supper, then watched stuff on DVR and also some of Ole Miss-Texas A&M game. Lots of college football today :)

*Sunday is my favorite day of the week! We went to church (still in the series “Next: A Study of Joshua)and then Sunday School. We didn’t linger to visit, since Tim had a 12:50 tee time. I went to Kroger, then walked around to look at a few new houses in subdivision. Elizabeth came over for supper (she very graciously agreed to stop and pick up the pizza we ordered at Dominos) and she spent the night with us.

*Monday, Elizabeth was here most of the morning, then she headed to school (even though she has the day off for Columbus Day). It was cloudy all day, and then we had strong storms in the PM - wind, rain but nothing any worse. I had been looking forward to a rain storm, so I could sit out back on my screened in porch and watch it rain and the wind blow in the trees. I did, and it was marvelous! For supper, we had a true Meatless Monday… I made eggplant patties, sauteed cabbage and sesame green beans for supper. Yummy. While it rained, we stayed in and watched some shows that are piling up on the DVR.

OK, that about catches me up! Today is Tuesday, 10/14, and I did finally drag my lazy butt out of bed this morning and go walking. It was 59 degrees when I left and I was nearly chilly! I’m SO looking forward to fall and having more time at home. We’re going to be busy this weekend, with lots of fun stuff going on. More about that soon!

Hope everyone is having a great day!

Oct-5-14

My poor Fitbit

posted by Stace

I am so happy to be back to some sporadic walking, in the new subdivision. I’ve mapped out a route, and it’s about what I want to walk, in the 3.2 to 3.4 mile range. I didn’t get a chance to go Monday morning, since we went to close at 8:30 AM, so I headed out Tuesday morning. Tim took the day off from work, and left to go watch our nephew Zack play in his first collegiate golf tournament (he didn’t shoot well, must have been the pressure of his uncle there, LOL!). I was out walking when he left, but my stomach was not feeling great, so I flagged him down and got him to drop me back at the house. Not feeling great, I made a tragic mistake. See, I wear my FitBit One (it’s very small) clipped onto my bra or sports bra. I took a shower and tossed my dirty clothes in the laundry basket, and then later decided to do laundry. See where this is going…

I discovered my FitBit still attached to my sports bra when I took it out of the washer to hang up to dry. Completely dead. I put it in rice and left it about 24-36 hours. After that, it needed a full charge of course, and I had high hopes that it would be ok. My hopes were dashed though. It is not holding a charge and runs down in just a few hours. Also, it doesn’t sync anymore on its own, I have to force a sync to get the data uploaded. Sigh.

So, I emailed Fitbit. Explained that it went through the washer, my mistake, and I had tried the rice trick and was still having trouble with it. They immediately emailed me back, asking for purchase information. I sent them that (Tim bought for me last year before Christmas, so it was just under a year), and they emailed right back, saying they would ship me a new one for free. Talk about great customer service! They answered me promptly, offered me a new replacement, and I got an email this morning that it had already shipped. So, next week I should have a new one, hopefully that works and can track my steps and sleep. Hooray!

Kudos to the Fitbit people :)

Sep-30-14

Another Weekly Update

posted by Stace

Let’s see… I keep saying I’ll make some kind of interesting blog post, but still, I keep just jotting down what we do every day. My own online diary… B O R I N G! I know, but still a lot going on and it’s all I can do just to record some of this for my horrible memory :)

Last week was another busy one, but another good week. On Monday, I ran errands all day. And by all day, I definitely mean all day, I think I went to 7 or 8 places. Walmart, Home Depot, the dollar store, Kroger, Sam’s, Ace Hardware, the bank, the post office and the old house. The Sam’s Club run was, as I had predicted, monumentally large! I had gotten low on so many items, and didn’t even get everything on my list, but still had an overflowing large buggy. Glad to have the pantry and new kitchen to stock up for!

Tuesday and Wednesday were relatively quiet days. I tried to mostly stay home unpacking. Tuesday morning I got up, made myself some coffee and sat out on my back porch, trying to catch up on my Bible reading. I’m SO far behind. I would say that I enjoyed the peace and quiet, but there’s construction all around us, so I heard all of the trucks, machines, equipment and workers. Still, it was very enjoyable! Wednesday was the home inspection at the old house, and Tim got a long list of nit picky items that will need to be addressed. He played golf Wednesday though, and had fun :) Wednesday, I made red beans and rice for supper, which was good.

Thursday, I finally got my rear in gear and got out the door to go walk for first time in the new subdivision. I will have to work on a route, and learn the distances. Later that morning, we met with the landscape guy at new house, as I had a lot of questions about the plants (what are they, how to care for them, how to prune them, when to prune them, etc, especially the roses they planted out front), and Tim had questions about the irrigation system. Tim spent a big portion of the rest of the day on the phone with items from the old house inspection. After work, he headed to Lowes and then the old house to work on items on the old list that we weren’t going to get an electrician or roofer to handle. He got home really late, after dark and was exhausted. He had eggs, sausage, grits and homemade biscuits to look forward to, so that helped a wee bit :)

Friday, I got up and went again on a walk, and found a new route! I mapped out some streets that gave me about 3.2 miles, which is about what I like to walk. After I got home and had breakfast, I was talking to Tim and saw a white blob fall out of the sky and land on our driveway… A weather balloon landed on the house!! Tim climbed up on the roof to get the deflated orange portion down, and we put the recorder box in a prepaid mailing envelope attached to it, to mail it back to NOAA. It was pretty cool! Tim spent more phone time, working on items for old house (termite inspection, electrician and roofer), and then after work, we both went to the old house to finish things up (last cleaning, Tim fixed the washer spigot, cut grass, loaded up the mower and weed eater, etc). After that, we came back home (to the new house, can’t call it that much longer!) to meet Gail and Don and then go eat a late supper with them and Elizabeth at Majestic Burger. Don and Gail spend the night, so were our first houseguests at the new house!

Saturday, Gail and Don left early for a soccer game for Katelyn and I asked to tag along (Tim stayed here to work in the garage). Katelyn did really well and scored two goals! After the game, Gail and I dropped Don off at Lake Caroline to play golf with Tim, and then we went shopping. I got a few new things for the house (sponge holders, cast iron griddle, drawer organizers, new rug for front door, two fall wreaths). Poor Gail got to drag around with me from store to store, looking for doo-dads that I wanted. And this was just the tip of the iceberg, there’s still SOOO much more we need, especially shower rods. No one can come stay and take a shower in the guest bath, since I don’t have a rod and curtain or a shower door yet! After shopping, we met the guys for a very LATE lunch at Jason’s Deli (3:30 PM, I was beyond hungry, and fairly irritable!). Don and Tim stopped by the old house to spray a wasp nest, then they went to get the treadmill from the storage unit. Don and Gail headed home, and I know they were exhausted, because Tim and I both were!

Sunday was church and Sunday school. Then, we stopped on the way home at GermanFest (in Gluckstadt) for brats, sauerkrat and shish-ke-bob. We used to go every year when my dad was alive, but had not been in the last couple of years. The sign said 28th annual, and I didn’t realize it had been going on that long! We got enough for us for lunch, and us plus Liz for supper. We had a late lunch, and watched some of the Packers/Bears game after church, then we went walking down the street to look at new houses. We stopped to talk to the neighbors two doors down, the first family that moved in on the street, but we had met everyone but them :) We visited a long time, maybe a couple of hours! Then, we came home to meet Liz and watch the Saints/Cowboys game on Sunday night football (my poor Saints, they can’t win this year, boo hoo)

Monday, we were up early to let Liz use our shower, then get ready to go to the closing. We closed on the old house today, and have now ended that chapter of our lives. I miss the old house, it was the house my parents helped me get when I was still single, that I had when I met Tim, that he came to live in with me when we got married, and where we had lived all of our married life until a couple of weeks ago. A lot of memories there, but it’s time to put that in a box on a shelf and move on to the next chapter. We have a beautiful new home, and as of closing, we now own only ONE home! After the closing, Tim came home and went back to work and I went on another large grocery run. We went after work to get the last load of stuff from the storage unit, so we could close it out by the end of the month. It will be nice to not have to pay for that every month now! Our garage and dining room are our storage units now, LOL! I fixed chicken fried rice and egg rolls for supper, yummy. I’ve been craving Chinese food for quite a while now, can’t wait to go soon.

And, that ends this portion of my boring daily life and my modified online diary! Poor blog, you are pretty neglected except for these daily snippet posts :(

Sep-22-14

Catching Up

posted by Stace

I need to be catching up on my blog, I need to watch the mountain of shows on the DVR that are mine (cooking, Masterchef, Dancing with the Stars, etc), but all I seem to do is unpack! And then later, try to figure out where I put something! I think I’m going to be doing that for a long time, figuring out where I stashed something in the frenzy that is my unpacking.

Current phrase heard around the new house: “If you were an X, where would you be?” As in, if you were the scissors, where would you be? If you were the bath soap, where would you be? :)

Let’s see, this past week has been a blur, which is par for the course. Monday, I went to the old house to clean everything. Suzanne came and helped and cleaned out the fridge for me, and also broke down some boxes that were left in the garage. After that, we came back to the new house (gotta start calling it “home” now! LOL!) and had leftover pizza and then got to work lining shelves. We lined until we ran out of shelf liner. Tuesday, I went to Walmart to get more, a lot more! I think I got 18 more rolls, which turned out to be close, but I bought too many short rolls and not enough longer ones. Anyway, I picked up Rally’s for lunch on the way back, as Tim was busy at work all day Monday and Tuesday with conference calls. Wednesday, I stayed home all day and worked on unpacking, lining shelves, etc.

We got another offer on the house on Wednesday evening. We made a counter offer, then heard back Thursday morning that they did not accept our offer. Our realtor was pretty confident though, that after they had seen other properties in the area in our price range, they might think differently. And apparently, they did, because they made another offer late Thursday. We slept on it, prayed on it, made one final counter for a minor difference, and then had a verbal agreement Friday morning. We went and signed papers Friday afternoon at our realtors office, then went to Ridgeland Specialty Hardware to get the trash bins that should have been installed before we closed, but were not. After that, we came home and did some more unpacking.

Friday night, we went out to have a celebratory dinner and a long over due date night. Tim took me to Two Rivers, which we had never been to before. Tim had a ribeye and I had the grilled redfish with shrimp. Since we were celebrating, we had tiramisu for dessert, which was delicious!

Tim took two more vacation days, on Thursday and Friday. He has been SO wanting to work on his new surround sound, so he did just that. Thursday, I ran to Fresh Market to get the Thursday Little Meal deal (bacon, juice, potato/cheddar/chive pancake mix and some other items), and also stopped at the old house to check the mail. When I got back Thursday afternoon, he had started cutting holes in the ceiling in the great room (five). Friday, he worked on getting everything hooked up to his components, and we were busy Friday with negotiations on selling the old house. Saturday, he worked on getting his outdoor speakers installed on the screened in porch out back. They sound awesome! All of them :) What really surprised me was that he has it fixed where you can listen to one thing in the great room on those speakers, and at the same time, you can listen to a different input of music out on the back porch. Way cool! Saturday afternoon, we also took both vehicles and loaded them to the max at the storage unit and brought and unloaded them here. Exactly what we needed, more boxes! But we are wanting to get that storage unit emptied so we can stop paying a monthly rental on it. We stopped and picked up Sonic on the way home and had a late lunch at 4 PM, ugh, I hate eating that late! :)

Sunday, always my favorite day of the week, was a very busy day for us. We made it back to church, after missing last week (which we both hated to do). We started a new sermon series, Next: A Study of Joshua, and had a great lesson in Sunday School. Gail had texted me on the way to church, saying that she was driving down to pick up David, who was flying home from Alaska. He’s been gone all summer, working for Holland in Alaska and is finally coming home. Well, for about 10 days, then he leaves for a month or more to tour Iceland, Europe, and take a cruise from Venice through the Greek isles, Mediterranean, Straits of Gibraltar and back across the Atlantic. That boy has a tough life :D Anyway, she said they would come out to our area of town to eat lunch and hoped we could meet them. So, we met Gail, David, Elizabeth, Jeremy, Kathryn, Katelyn, Sam and Suzanne for lunch at Newk’s. Afterwards, everyone came to see the new house and we visited all afternoon, which was great. Elizabeth stayed a while after to grade papers and watch some of the Saints game with us. It was great to hear it in surround sound! The Saints finally won one, beating the Vikings at home, and are now 1-2. After that, Tim and I split up, and I went to our bedroom to watch some of my massive amount of shows on the DVR and he watched an old movie in the den (Vertical Limit, I think).

So, that catches me up for a little bit. It’s Monday morning now and we are working on new routines. Tim is back at work, I’m doing laundry, but we still have a mountain of boxes to wade through and unpack. One box at a time! I need to go to the grocery story today, and one day this week, maybe tomorrow, I need to make a huge run to Sam’s Club. I had gotten low on many items that I regularly buy there, so there would be less to move. Time to start back stocking up (I don’t like running out of paper towels and toilet paper, LOL!)

Hope everyone is having a great day and will have a great week!

Sep-15-14

Closed and Moved!

posted by Stace

To make a long story short, we closed as scheduled (pretty much!) on Wednesday and got moved in over the weekend.

Tim and I had planned to start moving in stuff ourselves on Wednesday night, but after we closed at the attorney’s office and drove to the new house, we found it was still very dirty. I was SO disappointed! They finally got it cleaned Thursday afternoon, so we started moving small things and our electronics on Thursday evening. Friday, we moved our bed, a few essentials and the food. We spent the first night in our new house on Friday, then got up really early Saturday morning. Tim decided at the last minute to rent a truck (which pleased me no end!), and we had to go get it. That turned into another long story, as in, he gets to the place and they are like, sorry, we have no truck for you. Argh. I had to go back and get him and drive half way across town to a different rental place, but all’s well that ends well. We got a Penske truck, got it to the house, where a lot of folks were sitting around and waiting. All of Tim’s family got there early (Terry, Emi, Brittany, David, and Tony, and then Mark and Ethan, Gail and Don, Suzanne and Elizabeth came later). We got the furniture and boxes loaded around lunchtime, then headed to the new house. They all started unloading while I went to go get pizza, chips, fruit and drinks. They unloaded most of the big truck before the guys would stop and eat, they were dedicated movers, I tell you! We were so grateful for everyone who came to help and how smoothly it went. I only have one piece of furniture scratched badly (that we were eventually going to replace anyway), and so far, nothing breakable has been broken, so that is nice to have such a great move :)

Tim and I had a long day Saturday. After everyone left late afternoon, we headed to Home Depot to get a dryer cord and back to the old house to visit our dear neighbors and try to clean up the garage. Also, we realized when we got there that we had left a few things out back, so we loaded those up. By the time we got home and unloaded and moved stuff around in the new garage, it was nearly 10:30. I caved and ate a yogurt, even thought I detest eating that late :)

Sunday, we decided to sleep in and missed church. We were both so exhausted and I was extremely sore. I hit a new one day total on Saturday on my Fitbit tracker, over 33,000 steps! I cooked our first meal in the new house Sunday morning - scrambled eggs, grits and toast! Tim forced me to dive in and use our new gas cooktop for the first time, and needing to cook forced me to unpack some of my cookware! LOL! Let the unpacking begin! There are boxes everywhere, and we still have the entire storage unit to move here, but we are so happy and having so much fun, that we don’t even care! :D

Sunday at lunch, we went *back* to Home Depot for a different dryer plug, and Tim got the washer and dryer going late Sunday afternoon. I did one load of laundry and was happy that the laundry room did not flood :) After Home Depot, we ran by the grocery store for milk, juice and some lettuce. After all the fast food, I’m really craving a salad or something healthy, LOL! After that, we watched the Saints lose another heartbreaker (they are 0-2 now, with both losses coming in either the last 6 seconds or OT and being lost by a field goal). Then, we did some hunting, sorting, unpacking and trying to find a home for things here. That’s going to be the hardest part for me, figuring out where to put stuff!

Monday (today) was another busy day for me. I got up early and headed to the old house to clean. I spent about 3 1/2 hours cleaning, and my sister Suzanne came over and helped me a ton by cleaning the fridge and breaking down a bunch of boxes we had leftover, and getting them to the curb to recycle. She followed me back to the new house after we finished, for some leftover pizza and helped me line kitchen shelves at the new place. I did not buy NEARLY enough shelf liner. I’ll have to head back to Walmart on Tuesday for a boatload more, like 12 or 14 more rolls! There are a lot of cabinets and drawers in this new house, hahaha!

Tim is at the old house now (Monday after work), to take down a couple of items, and fix some holes in the wall and paint. He may be late getting in, but I hope not. He went back to work today and had a busy day, conference calls, and more scheduled for Tuesday. I think he wants to take more vacation and get things done at the new house :)

Maybe one day I’ll get industrious and take some photos, but for now, just text updates. I’m glad he got our server back online, so I can post to the ole blog!

Sep-10-14

Monday and Tuesday before closing…

posted by Stace

Let’s see… Monday 9/8 turned out to be a fairly quiet day. In the morning, I made the rest of the calls and got all of the utilities transferred over to our name (from the builder’s name) at the new house. The water association was a different one than what we are currently on, so I had to drive up to their offices and fill out the paperwork and give them money. I stopped at Kroger and picked up some food from the deli, bread, milk and cereal. We’re eating take-out, sandwiches and cereal at this point :)

Tim met with a realtor who had brought his clients to see the house, and he brought out a roofing guy. We knew the roof would be an issue, since it’s original to the house (21 years old), but has never leaked or given us a problem. The roofer guy said it was fine, just old and probably needing replacing. He is going to send another guy out to measure and make a quote to give to the client, who we hope turns out to be a prospective buyer and gives us an offer on the house.

Monday afternoon, I vegged… trying to grab more “calm before the storm” :) I watched/skimmed some shows on the DVR and deleted them. We got busy after Tim finished working and got back into packing mode. I started on the food in the kitchen and he packed his guns and some guy stuff inside. We also packed all the shoes (yikes, we had more than I thought) and other odds and ends in the closet. Every time I think we’re about done, we find more to pack! I’ve still got books in one of the bookcases which Tim says I need to leave out so the house will show better, and it’s driving me nuts to not have them packed up! There’s also a lot more food and the last of the appliances (coffee pot, coffee grinder, toaster oven, etc), and then our clothes and toiletries. I’m just ready for it to be packed, then moved, and then.. unpacked! LOL!

We finally stopped about 11 PM Monday night and I went to read. Tim apparently stayed up working at work, writing a new program for something. He’s trying to get some projects turned in and stuff done before he is off for a few days. He’s going to take off the rest of this week (Wed-Fri) and then play it by ear as to how much he needs to be off next week. We’re very thankful he has a great (and very understanding) boss and they work for a really good company :)

Tuesday morning early, I got busy with more housework and cleaning (as we have another showing this afternoon at 3:30. I watered all my herbs and flowers, thankfully most of them are in pots and will eventually be loaded up on some truck and moved to the new house. I will probably need to pull out the sprinklers and hose again and water the grass, but I am hoping it won’t need it soon. I guess I’ll have to drive back and do that at some point, along with a huge cleaning session after we have moved everything out.

I had uploaded some photos of the perennials that are in our yard (but have now stopped blooming), so we could put out to show prospective buyers that the yard usually looks better than it does right now! I went to CVS late Tuesday morning and picked those up and also went to Dollar General and got more smaller boxes (to use in packing the food and pantry). After a quick lunch, I started back packing in the kitchen. I tackled one of the two junk drawers - and boy oh boy! I had no idea of the junk buried in the back! I was in the middle of packing when the realtor called at 2:15 and said “they are sitting outside your house, a little early, is the house ready for showing”? Um, hello, you said 3:30, so we thought we had another hour! Another fire drill, throwing things around, tidying up, turning on all the lights, then headed to the library (for the free wi-fi, since Tim is trying to work and finish a project before he’s off for the rest of the week).

After the realtor finished in the house, we headed home and Tim wanted to work some, but the blind guy we had contacted called and wanted us to meet at the new house to look at window treatments. We went up there and met him for a while, looked at shutter, shades, and blinds, along with some sample books and finally decided. We’re going to do plantation shutters in the great room, keeping room and breakfast room. We’ll do roman shades on the big back doors and over the kitchen window, and regular 2″ blinds in all the other rooms (laundry, bedrooms, Tim’s office and the ones in the hall looking out front). After that, we found more items for the punch list and met with the builder’s helper guy Spencer. We finally finished up about 3 1/2 hours after we got there! We called Suzanne and met her for a late supper at Majestic Burger. I had my regular thing, a grilled mahi-mahi sandwich on wheat and split some fries with Tim. Not healthy, but we’re SO not eating healthy right now!

So, Tuesday turned out to be another busy day! Wednesday, we close on the new house!

Sep-7-14

Days Go By…

posted by Stace

More daily ramblings, as we get closer and closer to the closing on the new house (and giving away investing all of our savings for a downpayment!), and hopefully closer to selling our current (aka old) house.

I posted on Wednesday morning 9/3. Tim had a really bad night, Tuesday night, and didn’t sleep much. He’s pretty sick with a sore throat, cold type symptoms, scratchy voice, congestion, etc. I think he got up once or twice during the night and watched tv or worked on the computer because he couldn’t sleep. Poor thing. He won’t take a day of sick leave though, which is why he has more accumulated with his company than he could ever use :)

Wednesday turned out to be a nice, quiet day! I kept thinking to myself all day “enjoy the calm before the storm!” I went to Kroger and got a few groceries, then came home and just did some odd jobs around the house, played on my ipad a little, watched a little tv, and basically ignored packing. Until about 4 PM, then I packed a couple of boxes :) We had no showings on Wednesday, so we didn’t have to rush out of the house and be gone, especially at dinner time. I thought I was done with cooking, but still eeking out a smidge more, although what we had for supper wasn’t really cooking. Tim’s friend Tony came around 6:30 to eat, hang out and spend the night, as he has a really early doctor’s appointment Thursday morning. I made tomato soup and grilled cheese, one of my favorite comfort meals. After supper, we were watching NFL Network and got to talking about the house, so of course, we roped Tony into going to see the new house :) We’re horrible!

Thursday started out as another quiet day. I washed sheets and towels and cleaned up the guest room and guest bathroom. Tony might have been our last houseguest in the old house, since I can’t seem to talk Gail into coming before we move :D Tim is feeling a little bit better, but digging around looking for OTC meds to take, so apparently he’s not as well as he lets on! We didn’t have any showings, but ended up with another houseguest. Suzanne called around 5 PM and said her power was out, so she was coming over to stay the night. Tim and I worked in the yard till dark. Might be the last time cutting the grass here, without having to load up the mower on the truck and bring it over :D

Friday morning, I had a haircut appointment. While I was there, Tim texted me that we had another showing Friday morning late, so I ran home to finish putting everything away and tidy up (again!). We were walking out the front door and the realtor and client drove up, that’s the first time that has happened! She didn’t look like someone who would buy our house, and sure enough, about the time we got to a restaurant to order lunch, the realtor texted they were done (less than 15 minutes). Oh well, we had a nice lunch at Krilakis anyway :) Friday afternoon, after Tim finished work, we headed to the new house (yes, again!) to look for more punch list items. I keep telling Tim “they are tired of us adding things to the list” and “they are only going to fix so much”, but he keeps persisting. :) After we got home, we heated up some leftovers for Tim, popcorn for me, and settled in to watch some things on the DVR and clean up a few shows.

Saturday, Tim had an early tee time, but woke up feeling bad still, so he decided not to go play. Which is VERY unlike Tim. Usually if he makes a commitment, he keeps it. But that is indicative of how bad he’s still feeling, if he doesn’t want to go play golf! We had a lazy morning, then got busy with more packing. My inclination is to get everything packed, everything, even though we still have 4 more days to closing and a week before the “big” move. Sigh. Suzanne popped over (unannounced!) around lunch and visited for a while. We packed (and sweated) all afternoon and into early evening. I can tell I’m going to be sore for the next couple of weeks, LOL!

Sunday is SO my favorite day of the week! We are loving church and our new Sunday School group. I told Tim today after we got out, I was just the epitome of happy, because they gave us new Sunday School books for the fall period (”Bible Studies for Life” from Lifeway). I nearly squealed in delight when I was handed one :) I was always a teacher’s pet, you know :) Anyway, we are nearing the end of the sermon series “All In” and had another good sermon from our regular pastor, this week’s symbol was the altar. And he did a play on words, and urged us all to live All-In, “all-tered” lives. Sunday School started in the new book, and this week we talked about church membership, and what it means to be a “member” of a church versus a part of the body of Christ (from Ephesians 2:17-22).

After we left church, we stopped at the auto parts store to get some injection cleaner for the engine of the Explorer, since the “check engine” light keeps coming on, unless we put in ethanol-free gas. Then we went to Taco Del Mar, where we have not been in ages. I had two avocados left at the house, so we decided to pick up enough tacos, burrito (for Tim), rice and beans to go along with the guacamole and chips, to last us for lunch and dinner. I packed all the cookware, all the dishes, all the glasses yesterday, so we are down to using paper plates and plastic cups. We got home late, changed into Saints shirts and started the recording of the first Saints game against Atlanta (which they ended up losing in overtime by a field goal), when our phones started going crazy. We got a text from Tim’s mom that they were headed to town and wanted to catch up and maybe see the house and do some shopping, and we got a text from one realtor, and then a phone call from a second one, wanting to show the house, one at 4:00 and one at 4:30. We finished eating, cleaned up the house, changed clothes, turned on all the lights and left around 2 PM. We met Tim’s family at the outlet mall, where Linda got some clothes for the Gideon meeting and Mitchell got a new suit (he’s going to go back to speaking in churches in the area for the Gideons). I got a pair of black ankle boots for fall/winter at the Clarks outlet, not sure if they are what I want, I might should have looked around more, but I don’t have a lot of extra time right now to clothes shop! LOL! Tim’s family ate before we got there, so we met them to shop, then headed to the new house. Brittany and David saw the house for the first time, and we got to meet Emi’s brother Lazarus, who arrived recently from Mexico. After that, we all headed back to Pearl and shopped for Terry’s store until closing. Tim and I came home, ate leftover tacos and finished the sad Saints game. Now, we are watching Sunday night football. I’m glad football has returned! This is our ONE Saints game in this house, next week we will be watching (hopefully!) from the new house!

I expect Monday and Tuesday to be very busy… lots of calls to make, I’m sure last minute things will pop up, and we are waiting to hear on the closing time and location on Wednesday. After we sign papers and give them all our money, we’ll get keys and start moving in! The big move is scheduled for next Saturday, we should have a crowd, all of Tim’s family and a lot of mine who are here. We can’t wait!!!