Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The new year is on its way...

I have been informed that we have preparations to make. The kids need a bag of marshmallows for their annual see in the new year campfire. They stay up/ out all night, drinking Cowboy Coffee, making S'mores, and roasting hotdogs. Sometimes they even charcoal potatoes. (The intent is actually to bake the potatoes in the coals, but they usually end up with smoldering lumps of charcoal wrapped in foil.)
I also need want to get some more of the cheese curls I discovered at Save-A-Lot last week. They are Herr's brand Honey Cheese Curls. Sweet, and savory. I was addicted instantly... and none of the guys like them at all. So a bag will be ALL MINE.

I must confess I have gained a day somewhere. I was sure today was Thursday... yet the computer says it is only Wednesday. I have sure enjoyed spending time with the grandkids. Connor and Alana came out and spent the night Friday, then Becky  and Stephen arrived with their three on Sunday afternoon. We had a great time visiting with Laurie and Andrew Wilhelm and their children yesterday. They narrowly missed meeting Mr. C (on his birthday!), due to missing a turnoff on their way over, and chores at home drawing them away before he arrived home after work.

I made the gumbo yesterday. It turned out quite well. Not exactly Seneca's gumbo, but still quite tasty. The lasagna was accomplished a couple of days ago in the crock pot. It was OK. Talk about a DEEP dish lasagna... this certainly was!

Not having an oven means I didn't get to bake Tom his carrot cake for his birthday. We went with a WalMart deli cheesecake instead. I got him some flannel Blue Jacket's Hockey sleep pants, as well as a Blue Jackets long sleeved T shirt. I also called a new coffee maker a birthday present... but we put that to use just before Becky and Stephen arrived.

I know not all of my kids read my blog... shame on them! So some may be pretty surprised when they get "birthday" presents this year... Since we show no signs of moving ANYWHERE, much less to Ohio... I have decided that I am gong to disburse my cookie jar collection among my kids/ grandkids. Then, for gift giving occasions, I will send them cookies!
So, for those of my kids who DO read the blog... better send in your "dibs" on which jar you want. PS, you cannot have Ferdinand

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Waiting....

Becky and Stephen and the kids are on their way to visit. I will get to see Dakota for the first time, and see how much Tyrel and Kimber have grown.
I had lots of good eats planned for the visit... and I am having to revise drastically... NO OVEN!
 The oven on the "new" stove does work, but puts out so much soot you would think the house is burning down. And it smells awful. The parts to fix it are on order... but seriously, hopes of getting it fixed during the week between Christmas and New Years are not great.
I have stew in the slow cooker right now. I will attempt lasagne in it later this week. I have a few ingredients to get this week, and one of the revised meals will be Gumbo.
I haven't yet spoken to my old boss at O'Reilly's about getting on as a rehire. Maybe I ought to pursue a better paying job... I don't know.
Fiona, as it turned out, was already broken. ("fixed"). (If something is "fixed", doesn't that imply that it works?... and when you spay/ neuter an animal, it prevents them from procreating. Since bringing forth young is the normal function... then if that is prevented... the animal is BROKEN... not "FIXED")
Anyways, she has become friendlier by the day. She and Jaffa have had no major confrontations. While she has awakened us crying a few times during the night, I warned the guys about responding. Respond once to a cat, and they will continue to do whatever got your attention, forever. So do NOT respond to her during the night!
That's all for now. Have a blessed day. Hug someone you love and call someone who doesn't expect it!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Digging out

I've been back in NW Arkansas since the wee hours of Wednesday morning. After three and a half hours of sleep Wednesday morning, the boys and I started cleaning at the house. Cleaning "at", because it is so bad and we didn't get too far. Lack of sleep on all our parts, not knowing where to start, general malaise. We didn't get very far.
I did get Fiona taken to the vet. We discovered that she has already been spayed, has no microchips to enable a return to her former owner, and has at some point been shot... she has a BB embedded beneath the skin of her side, healed over. (So far, she and Jaffa are getting along, but at a distance. They WILL eat near one another, but it has to be at least 2 1/2 feet of separation.) She was pronounced in good health.
Yesterday, we began cleaning in earnest. We started with re-arranging several elements of the front rooms.
We were soon up to our armpits in alligators chaos. Jimmy Raynar, the goldfish was relocated. His tank was coated in so much slime I was about to gag. Like the fish in the Finding Nemo dentists office. EEEEWWW!
By the time Mr C got home, we had most things re-arranged and situated. This morning, we made it all look nice... in the front room. Kitchen, passable, but not great.
On tap for the afternoon... the bedrooms. Dan's room is where Becky and family will sleep. Sam's room is where the packed boxes have been stored for several months now. My room... it is the breeding ground for a species of giant mutant, killer dust bunnies. I'm afraid to get started in there. And my bathroom... you would think that fear of germs that keeps a man from eating in a restaurant would also drive him to clean his home bathroom at least ONCE in the three and a half months since I have been gone.
I have slept well the last two nights, so my fogged brain is beginning to work again.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Introducing: Fiona

This past week, as I prepared to depart from Ohio, my MIL had another kitty come to her house. She tried to ignore the kitty. No petting, no feeding. But plenty of fretting. She called neighbors, asked around, checked the lost and found boards in town. All she found were several "FOUND" kitty ads... apparently some samaritan was blessing random homes with cats.
 She has three cats, which she takes VERY good care of. She didn't need another cat. She suggested I bring the kitty back to Arkansas with me. I suggested taking the kitty to town and seeing if it could find a loving home there. Then Mr C said I could keep the kitty. Sam and Daniel decided that Fiona was a nice name for a cat.
Sam and I started out with Fiona in a carrier. She was not pleased with this arrangement. Eventually, we let her out in the confines of the car. She checked out the surroundings, then slept most of the way home.





Fiona looks exactly like our old cat Al E Cat... which we had for almost 19 years.

Fiona and Jaffa are still deciding if they want to be friends.

Sigh

Here I am back in Arkansas.
Mr C's transfer request didn't come through in a timely manner, and I had overstayed the comforts of my MIL's guest apartment. None of her other children felt comfortable coming with me there. So after my 90 days... in lieu of the promotion that was in the works, I offered resignation.
Sam had stayed in Ohio last week after Tom came up to get most of my belongings I had transported up since July. He and I drove back yesterday.
We took a very scenic route. Nothing like missing a turn onto an expressway and taking literal backroads... in rain, fog, night and mountains. Not that the expressways were all that fast once we reached them. traffic on I-40 was at a standstill. Not slow... but NOT MOVING. we finally began creeping forward, merged, and then made between 5 and 20 miles an hour for the next 45 minutes.
Did I mention I had been trying to make good time, and also had consumed several highly caffeinated drinks to stay awake... planning to make a pit stop soon. The stopped traffic led to my decision to exit the quagmire of stalled traffic, despairing of ever re-entering the pack, at a rest area... because I reallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreallyreally REALLY had to go.
The rest area was closed. At less than 5 MPH, the next six miles to the nearest exit took an abominably long amount of time.
I was sorely afraid I wasn't going to make it.
I made it... but barely. My apologies to anyone who may of been lurking near the convenience store rest room waiting for it to be free. You weren't in line at the door when it opened. Had you been there... it would of been too late for me. (When I came out there WAS a line!)
Oh, we also gained a kitty our last day in Ohio. She/it (can't tell by the plumbing, I assume it is a girl.) showed up at my MIL's house about a week ago. MIL has three cats and was fretting over what to do about this one. It was well fed, and looks exactly like our old Al E cat. Al passed away about 2 years ago. We had had her for nearly 19 years.
Our scenic drive back was accompanied by Fiona. She traveled well, despite a couple of indiscretions. After my close call, I can totally understand. There was no litter box. We were in the car for 21 hours. She is now making friends with Jaffa. (I hope.)
The house looks like a bachelor pad. With Becky and crew coming Sunday... and all the stuff we packed back in July, (in order to move to Ohio) still in boxes, I have a lot to do this week. I just don't know where to begin.
Yeah. I'm back.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Updates from the Ohioan

Today is one of my rare trips to the library... Work has slowed just enough that Sundays are now voluntary... and I am not volunteering! I am still working 6 days a week, 10 hour days M-F, and 8 on Saturdays.
It has left little (read NO) time for house hunting. Mr C is supposed to be looking online for me, finding places I can say either "yes, we want to see this place", or "cross it off the list". I can't stay in my MIL's basement much longer, she has other family members who want to visit, but feel as if I am displacing them in my residential use of her guest room.
Time for something to happen!
So, I ask prayers of all my family and friends... Tom's transfer to happen, or time for me to give notice... throw in the towel, and head back to Arkansas.

It is December already, a fact that pretty much everyone is already aware. It has really crept up on me. I have almost a dozen birthdays to think of this month... and have in fact only dealt with four of them as of today. Becky's birthday is the next one I really have to THINK about. I was limited in options for Chris', so he was relatively easy to shop for.
I really like my job... and would hate to give it up. I am at the threshold of it becoming a career step. I am the unofficial trainer for my department. And word was given at a meeting last week that the company is looking among the rank and file for new lead people and managers, as our growth has already far outstripped even their most generous initial estimates of manpower. (Over 200 people have been hired in the last couple of weeks.)
That said, if things don't fall into place in the next week... I will be giving up this job and back in the job market of NW AR. That's just how things happen sometimes. I gave it a shot, and can say "I live in OHIO!"... or, "I lived in Ohio!" . Cross one thing off the old "Bucket List".
So, May each of you be blessed today. Hug someone you love, and pass some encouragement on to a person who needs it.
Thanks for reading!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Yes, I am Alive...

I have been working 7 days a week since the day before Halloween, and was working 6 days a week before that. Putting in 10 hour days most days, and not near a computer to be able to even check email or Facebook in so long I can't recall when I last did!
The job is not HARD but it is tedious, and grueling with pressure. Since it is a "start up" company, we are figuring out the best way to do things as we go along. Some things have been disastrous failures, while other things we are trying to do to speed up receiving may work out eventually.
I really like my co-workers. There is such a huge blend of cultures and people working here. I am making friends... or at least work acquaintances.
So far, Mr C's transfer has not come through. He is not pushing me to quit, yet.
Big news since I was least here... Becky gave birth to Dakota Rose on 11/11/11 at 1:20 in the afternoon. Dakota weighed 8lbs. 5.5 oz. and looks just like her siblings. If you look on the sidebar to my blog, there are pictures of her up at "Mom's Adventure".
As I am on borrowed library time and still have so much I need to do, I am closing for now.
 May you be richly blessed. (Truth /JoAnne, if you read this PLEASE send my love to the wonderful folks at TOK!)
~Tammy~

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Work!

The actual work part of my new job took off this week. I have learned the new systems, and can get the product received into stock. The goal is to keep the product always moving, going out as fast as it comes in. So anyway, I am getting the hang of it. looks like "just in time" too... they expect the receivers to be working Saturdays for the next five or six weeks.
I have made plenty of suggestions at work, as well as spoken up to the "big boss" when he questioned WHy we were unable to do what we were hired to do earlier this week. I gave him a real rundown of the problems we were having... mostly being lack of equipment. It is hard for four receivers and five managers to share two computers, and get done all the computer based work... especially when of the nine people, only two had access to even get IN the necessary programs. That was remedied quickly, after the little meeting. Big boss has a nickname for me already... "Troublemaker".
I also brought myself to the attention of pretty much the whole department yesterday. I tripped over a pallet and fell sprawling-splat at the feet of the supervisor and a couple of co-workers. I wasn't hurt. (And thankfully, no one clapped!) I got up, dusted off, retrieved my glasses, which had glided on across the floor another 10 feet. Later, I was told to report to the safety administrator. They HAD to file an accident report! And I had to have a mandatory drug test. (My second in three weeks, thank you!)  But then, the big boss came around to personally check on me and find out what had happened and if I was really OK. What a change from American Eagle... where I shredded open my hand on a tape gun, and my supervisor told me to put a band-aid on it and get back to work, that it didn't warrant an accident report andwhen it kept bleeding, she suggested direct pressure... but hold something on it tightly with tape, because I had work to do... (I have a SCAR from that!)

The trees here are so beautiful... all the fall colors are just popping up all around. A week ago, on top of the Ridge road, I could look across the valleys and I saw ONE red dressed tree atop a faraway hill. Yesterday, I slowed to look for that tree. It was hard to find amid all the other red, orange and yellows that are dressing the hills and valleys.
Sitting out on the deck and looking into the woods, there seems to be at least one leaf falling at any given moment, often many at a time. It seems as if there is some signal given that I can't hear, and dozens of leaves come cascading down. In the quiet, you really can hear ONE leaf falling, gently clicking and ticking against other leaves and branches as it drifts slowly down. When there is a breeze in the treetops, the leaves just rain down.

That's about all  have time for today. Hope you have a blessed and wonderful day.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Here I are!

I have been living in Ohio for the last 10 or 12 days. I began my new job, up near Columbus. They warned me it was a "start-up" business. I was in early at American Eagle's start up when they moved from Lawton to NW Arkansas. I was there when Eagle moved 1/2 mile up the road to bigger digs.
We dealt with aircraft parts... we moved to a new location without stopping the maintenance.
But this is chaos on a whole new level.
The warehouse is eight hundred thousand square feet. Just writing 800,000 SF doesn't do justice to the size.
The first day: I did paperwork, paperwork, paperwork, paperwork, watched safety films, paperwork, paperwork, safety films, and more paperwork.
Day 2: The "receivers" are removed from the group of shippers. I am told I am a shipper, first shift, 6:00 am -2:30 pm. (For the duration of training, plan to work 8:00-4:30). The receivers are given a training overview. The shippers are left in the conference room, and told someone will be with us shortly. No one ever was with us.... til nearly 2 hours later someone finds us and sends us for a long lunch. This screwed up the automated time system that rejects long lunches and assesses as "late" back from lunch, which causes us to accrue a "half a point"... more than 2 points in the first 90 days = termination. (They fixed our times as we were told to take the long lunch).
Day 3, I learn I am NOT a shipper... I am a receiver. They have no first shift shippers. Most of the 40 people hired thus far are set to janitorial work. I have pushed a broom now for 4 solid days. Only one day was I required to stay until 4:30.
(There is no product coming in nor going out, and none of the systems are set up. These are technical systems, so we cannot "help" build conveyor belts or set up computer systems.
Monday, we are supposed to have enough warehouse systems in place and have the necessary hardware on hand, that I will actually start to learn about my new job. They are supposed to "go live" Oct. 3rd. Meanwhile, I have logged some 25+ miles behind a broom. Thank you Lord, it is Friday.

Mr C informs me that American Eagle is closing the Boston Maintenance facility. So all transfers by people not working from Boston, may be put on hold for awhile. We are still waiting to see about this.

My Mom's cousin Ruth is in ICU. A very sudden bout of pancreasitis has hospitalised her, leading quickly to the shutdown of kidneys and liver. Please say a prayer for her healing! Mom has gone to Arkansas to help out in Ruth's cake shop for awhile.

I am staying at my MIL's house. We have experienced an invasion of "trade mice"... the rather cute brown rodents with big eyes and rounded ears. However... they have been relentlessly trapped. We hope we have now discovered and blocked their entrance. The basement bathroom has developed a leak. This is where I live... so I am trying not to use much water before we can get it looked at. And I sure miss internet! With looking for houses online, I have little time to update my blog. Hoping we can find a place soon and that Tom CAN get his transfer in a timely manner.

Be blessed, Thanks for reading!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

nine eleven

I have been reading the 9/11 tributes and memories that fellow bloggers and Facebook posters have posted.

I was teaching Spanish to my kids, along with my DH. We were barely into the first school year after our 4 year hiatus. I got a call from my step-mother, Kathie, to turn on the TV.
"What channel?" I asked.
"It doesn't matter! " she says.
So we turned in just after the first aircraft had hit, but before the second.
I feared... for my sons who were IN the Military, for our nation.
We watched all that day. By the next, we had to turn it off. The emotional toll was too much for us. We drove to our place of solace, the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge.
**********************
This came to me today....
 So much of a person's greatness stems from great trials and tribulations. I thought of John Walsh... what would he be today, had his son not been kidnapped and murdered? It turned him into an advocate and spokesperson for justice.
None of us knows the path of destiny, the great calling that stands before us, until we go through the trials of fire. Until an event acts as a catalyst, many of us will not realize our call to greatness.
It isn't necessarily a national catastrophe that acts as the catalyst that brings us into our calling, into our maturity.
 One of my internet friends is facing the death of her five year old son. His death is inevitable. She is with hime every day, as his condition slowly ekes his life from him, and she is helpless to stop it. She gains new strength to face his loss with every passing day. Meanwhile, she has adopted two menatlly handicapped girls from the Ukraine, where they would would have been shunted from the orphanage to an adult psychaitric hospital to live out their days, when they reached 4 years old. May God bless the Parker family for bravely stepping in and DOING what they can do to help another soul in this earth. I know that I could no walk her walk at this moment, it would destroy me. Yet this was not a walk of her own choosing... events around her shaped this walk.

I am starting tomorrow on a new path. I hope it is free from tragedy and peril. But if it is not, may God's grace give me the strength to endure the path set before me.

The Next Big Adventure

Tomorrow I leave for Ohio. I start a new job next Monday. For awhile, I will be leaving behind Tom and the boys. I won't be without family and frinds there, though. And I will still have (limited use of) the internet to try and keep up with all my family and friends.

So email me, leave a comment, text, write something on my facebook wall... I will try to respond when I can.
 Be blessed!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

What a day.

Our Dog Drover was just hit and killed as he tried to chase off the mail carrier. Tom and the boys were trying to call him back, but the truck clipped him. It was pretty well instantaneous, he didn't suffer. But the guys are are understandably upset. Even the carrier cried. He kept apologising... but it was NOT his fault. we have tried and tried to break Drover of chasing the mail carrier. Jaffa keeps trying to get out and find Drover... who is laying peacefully in the sun as the twins deepen a hole for him to rest in.

I gave word to my boss this morning that Saturday will be my last day with O'Reilly. He didn't scream at me... which I am truly thankful for. He didn't send me home, either. As it was, I only got in two hours, since the warehouse and truck drivers had last night off. I had no incoming freight.

The morning started out with my battery in the car being dead. Tom jumped me off, and I tested the battery at work, and had to replace it. After work, it was on to the Revenue office... where I was in and out with tags for both vehicles in under 15 minutes. I was Wow'ed.

The boys and I made it to the library and home again by a few minutes past noon. The mail carrier was running late... we thought we had missed him and were just discussing it, when he pulled up and the dogs kicked up a ruckus and took off after him. Ending badly.

Tom and I have had our waffles over this job offer and moving. I will be the "advance scout", heading up to Ohio this coming Monday. I have pre-employment paperwork to accomplish, as well as a background screening and such to go through before starting on the 19th. I gave "irrevocable" notice to my boss at O'Reilly's this morning. So this has really been a day of multiple endings.

My computer time in Ohio will be very limited... I will have access only at the library (unless and/or  until I can get a laptop and aircard). I am sure many days the library may be closed by the time I can even get near it. Bear with me if my blogging becomes totally sporadic!

Thanks for reading.
~Tammy~

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Another week in wonder-land

Early this morning, a band of rain headed north from tropical storm Lee collided with a band of rain headed SE... so far, we haven't seen any fruit of theis collision. It is poised just above and below us. The temperatures though.... (can I say "aaaahhhhh!"?) is supposed to be a high of 83! (Yesterday was 100*).

OK, since I wrote the above paragraph, I have had to go to the store, and also had a nap. (Writing a paragraph is sooo exhausting... just ask my kids when assigned an essay!) The temperature is about 67*, windy, and we have had a few sprinkles.

A decision was made regarding the Ohio job/ move. (Subject, as always, to change!) However, I can't speak of it online until after Tuesday. Feel free to call me in the meanwhile, if you like. Tuesday may be a busy day... I am supposed to work 8 hours (9 counting lunch) and then have to go to the tag agency. Seems the car tag expirations for both the cars sneaked up on us. I anticipate the usual beaurocratic lines, red tape, and slowdowns. It usually takes no longer than two hours to get tags... but being the first day open after a holiday and at the 'first' of the month, lines will long. Especially in the afternoon.

I finally went in to see the doc on Friday. The pesky UTI that has been annoying me since our last trip to Ohio was finally to the point I was not ready to suffer through another weekend. I called from work, figuring to take the first availble appointment, get the antibiotics, and be back on the job in about an hour.

The clinic was able to get me an immediate appointment- I had 30 minutes to get the 15 miles from work to Siloam. I dropped what I was doing and scooted out the door, telling the boss to call it my lunch break (at 8:15 in the morning). Sheesh... nothing is ever that easy is it? At 11:00 am I was still at the clinic. They found no UTI.
The very young internist (who looked so much like my son Benjamin, I couldn't help but stare!) was concerned it was appendixitis, or kidney stones. Or another flare of the 15% chance of problems with the right ovary. (When I had the hysterectomy 5 years ago, the doc left in the right ovary, stating I had an 85% chance of never having a problem with it. Every few months, it flares up with cysts and puts me to bed several days. This pain was NOT like that.) So a sonogram was scheduled. I was sent back to work, and told to return at 2:45... but to eat nothing, and drink 8 eight ounce glasses of water starting an hour before the sonogram.
I had had nothing to eat all day. I drank a cup of hot tea with less than a teaspoon of sugar, at 5:00am. By the time I got back to the clinic... I was starving, and beyond the peepee dance. They were running late. My 2:45 test didn't start until 3:15.
They found NOTHING. No kidney stones, no inflamed appendix, no flared up cyst on the ovary. I was prescribed an anti-inflammatory, and ibuprofen.  It was nearly five by the time I got to pick up the presciptions, and 5:30 before I got home.
Today, I am feeling quite a bit better. And I know that my cholesterol is good, as are my liver enzymes (which were high last time they were tested) and my blood sugar was slightly elevated. (107).

The owner of the house we rent was here when I arrived, replacing the stove. He found us a good used stove. He said we may need to call the property manager to come out and adjust it after he finished installing it. Seems the burners have settings ranging from extra high to flame thrower. Its lowest flame is twice as high as the highest flame we could get from the old stove. I am thoroughly afraid of trying the oven.... it may only go as low as "incinerate".

I want to say a big "get well soon" to my step Mom, Kathie. She had to have emergency gall bladder surgery Friday.
Have a blessed day, and thanks for reading.



Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sunday Shopping

Mr C and I were up early this morning... actually, HE was up early and I slept in until 7:0), when he woke me to see if I was going to go buy groceries with him. We usually buy groceries early on MONDAY morning, because there is virtually no-one shopping at the SuperCenter at 7:00 am on a Monday.
Since we were so out of everything, we pretty much had to go today.

I made a cup of tea for the road, and off we went, list in hand.
Then we got home... and started a brand new list.
It always seems to happen that we forget an item or two. Today, before we had been home an hour, we had a list as long as the one we had left with. So we may be repeating the shopping trip in the morning. *sigh*

I really have avoided mentioning how things went on our house hunting trip. Basically, nothing was really practical and in our price range. The internet is a wonderful tool for wasting ones time... a picture or five on the internet can make a place look like it is worth looking into... until you get to it and see in person that the best hope that house has of selling at all is as a cleared lot after a kerosene bath and a match. Really, some of the places were THAT bad.

My secondary position interview went well, but they won't be starting to work until later in September. Whether with or without me is still to be determined at our end.

I found a nice roast beast at the grocery store- one of the prettiest I have seen in awhile. It is in the slow cooker, smelling up the house with wondrously savory scents of beef, onions and garlic.
The weather here is warm... mid 90's. Can't complain when I see my family in Texas is still whacking 100+ every day.

I was sent a telephone photo of Grandson Gavin on his first day of school. Grands Connor and Alana had their first day pictures noted as well. Everyone is just getting so grown up. Even Tyrel is starting the very basics of schooling at home. I remember Chris and Bill starting at Gavin and Ty's ages... more than 25 years ago! Gabs has a birthday coming up in a couple of weeks; Sept. 11th, same as my brother Robert.

Mr C continues to look at houses online. Nothing new has leaped out at us.
Guess that's about all my rambles for now! Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Pictures from the hike to Rockbridge

Orange flowers



The Rock bridge, side view

standing below the rock bridge

looking up at the rock bridge

signpost: (ignore the sideways!) We forgot the required rocket packs and cane for the hike


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Hiking to the Rockbridge... or, "Gee, mom can sure run!"

Our last day in Ohio, we went to a sight we hadn't hiked to before, the rock bridge... located aptly enough, in Rockbridge. It was supposed to be 3/4 of a mile from the parking area to the bridge, taking the shorter of two loops.
The intrepid hiker twins forged ahead, leaving Mr C and I huffing along behind. I am amazed at how quickly one loses tone and endurance when walking is cut back from almost daily, to once a week or so. A few of the points in the trail were... steep. (huff hufff huff). Mr C soon got ahead of me as I stopped to catch my breath take pictures of interesting flora along the path. The path wended its way along the side of a pasture through fifteen foot high ragweed, which was just bursting into full bloom, and then into deep, shady woods. It was uphill every step of the way, in both directions.
Really.
So Mr C calls back to me, "Watch out, there is a hornets nest here by the trail! YEOW I just got stung by a hornet!"
So I stopped. I was fifteen or twenty yards from the nest. The hornets in Ohio build big paper nests, like deformed basketballs. This one was cantaloup sized, and not two feet off the trail.
Tom moved on ahead.
I stood very still several minutes, then detoured around the trail, giving the hornets nest a very wide berth. Hornets don't much seem to care whether you are trying to avoid them. They don't even care that you have stayed far from their nest... at least as far as one can get on a steep rocky hillside in the woods. They came after me for even daring to be within sight of their nest!
I will never be able to tease Chris about his fear of wasps again.... I screamed like a little girl and RAN, feeling them tangling in my hair as I swatted wildly around my head, running full tilt, pell mell down the steep trail towards the already stung Mr C. (Shhhh, I didn't say down the trail... It was up the trail... uphill all the way, both directions!)
I mentioned heavy woods and steep hillsides already didn't I? You know, these trees are supported by these pesky things referred to as roots. The path is choked with roots. The roots are all that keep the dirt from washing down the steep paths into the creek at the bottom.
The roots also make it really difficult to stay upright when running shrieking through the forest swatting at ones head, pursued by hornets. Especially when you hit the mud on the trail next to the footbridge.
 I did a lovely trip slip flip slide right into the mud at the end of the bridge.  I was flat on my back in the muck. Tom stomped the hornet that I slapped from my hair.  The rest of the (flock? crew? pursuers?) gave up and went back to guarding the trail.

Took me a minute to get up.
I was covered in mucky mud from shoulders to toes... looking every bit like I may of slid into second base on a close call in a rainstorm.

We hiked on to the rock bridge, where Dan and Sam waited. They hadn't seen the hornets nest at all. I got several pictures of the bridge... a natural expanse of rock spanning a creek, forming a rock bridge that people are actually allowed to USE.

We took the longer loop back from the bridge, and warned other hikers we encountered that they might prefer the longer route to the bridge... even if it was even more uphill all the way than the shorter route.

I am fine, no broken bones or other injuries, other than sore muscles from my muddy impact. Too bad the twins missed seeing the sprint... I bet they have never seen Mom run!

I was going to post pictures of the rock bridge, but it blends so perfectly with the sides of the gully it spans, you cannot tell by the pictures that there is even a bridge there.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Howdy Y'all

I am at the library near my MIL's house, just for computer access.

I have tracked down all the houses in our price range for now, and have another five on the list to do drive by's on, as well as two set up for this afternoon and tomorrow that are "for sale by owner"s. (There is currently only ONE place left in the running on the list of all the places we had to see... a very small trailer house with a couple of magnificent garages.... one set up to be a "game room" or overflow sleeping for extra guests. If we have to take this place, the boys will get that as their bedroom. The property, now that is great.)
Why yes, we were planning to be on the road home Sunday... my bad. I got a response to an email I sent to my potential new employer, asking if I were interested in interviewing for a DIFFERENT position. It will be with an entirely different person than the previous interview... so I will be doing that on Monday morning... THEN we head for home. (Still gotta let my boss know that. Tom has cleared it with his.)

In the "yes, I am Bill's Mother" department... I have developed a UTI while here... and hoping to have that knocked out with some OTC medication., as well as fallen (TWICE) and jammed my wrist. It is much better... but sheesh!

I hope everyone is well. Keep us in your prayers for God to show us just where he wants us!
Thanks for reading!
 ~Tammy~

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Nothing new....

So far, as of the time I am typing this... we are taking a load of stuff next week to Ohio. This is of course, subject to change... and has changed at least three times in the past week. Good thing I have had a lot of practice at waiting to see what comes out in the wash.
Why yes, it does drive me crazy. Can't you tell?

Today, my step mom is having her eyes operated on... simple cataract removal. My Mom and step dad have gone to East Texas to help out my Dad and step mom for the week. I am glad that both of my sets of parents get along so well.

(Public) School will be starting around here soon. Not that "we" took a summer break this year. I have tried to keep the boys going all summer... but we have probably averaged two to three days a week so far. Better than quitting completely.

Daniel is learning all he can about hiking the Appalachian Trail. Sam says he will hike it with Daniel. "Their" (read: Dan's) goal is to do this in the next three to five years. I'd love to do something like that. But I would start with my own dream first- hiking to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and back out.

I think I am about as packed as I can get inside the house, and still live here. I need to pack the outside stuff... empty the potting soils and box up my planters, gnomes and bird bath.
As you can tell by my happily boring post... nothing much is going on with us as we wait to hear from this job. I hope to report soon that we have actually looked at houses and chosen one to make an offer on... rather than just scoped them out online.
That's all for now, thanks for reading!
~Tammy~

Monday, August 8, 2011

Here I am

I noticed yesterday that it has been at least a week since I posted. We have been through at least two "waffles" on the move, it is now back to the same thing I posted last week.
Tom is changing the brakes on my car. They were not as bad as I had thought. Still, better to get the parts while I can do so at a discount!

I went through my closet yesterday and put a bunch of  clothes into my give away pile. Some I put on eBay. (There is no way Tom is going to get down to a size 34 waist for some of the dress pants he has had forever.) Guess I ought to list my old Eagle uniforms... or see if anyone still at Eagle can wear them.
I hadn't seen the floor or back of the tiny closet in my room since we moved in!

We had chicken fried steaks for supper last night. SO good. I don't make them very often, as it is a very high calorie meal.

Nothing else new going on!
 Have a blessed day!

Monday, August 1, 2011

So...

Mr C is going to see about taking a few vacation days either next week, or the following week. We will see about looking at a few houses in Ohio... I have a list of a good dozen to consider at the moment.
We are optimistically hoping the delay in the job offer is waiting for the US Government to decide what the heck THEY are doing. (If the govt isn't paying SS checks and military... no one will be buying computers. Their current employees can handle the current workload until then. At least that  is our idea!)
So, still... no real news.
Have a blessed afternoon!
~Tammy~

Friday, July 29, 2011

Arrrgh.

Sent an email to the folks who I'm waiting to hear from about the job. This is their reply :"I think you would definitely make a good fit for the IC department, but at this time we are on hold for hiring anyone else for IC until we see over the next few weeks if we need more people. I will try to keep you informed. "

So am I hired or not?

Apparently NOT at this point. But I'm not NOT hired....

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Updatings for mid-week

My mom and SF Ralph are here. They brought us more boxes and brought Connor and Alana some scooters that had been given to them. We had an awesome roast beast for supper.

Tuesday I did NOT make it to the library. I was lucky to be home from work by noon. So I put off library for my typically easy Wednesday.
On arriving at work Wednesday, I was gratified at how little freight there was. This gratefulness turned to frustration when ALL the computers were down. Tech support couldn't tell me where to find some master controllers I needed to get at. So I called the boss... who didn't answer. After searching... aha! I found the controllers and called tech support back. For all the good it did... I needed a third bit of equipment found. So I tried Boss again. He called back shortly... and assured me he was on his way and would be "right there". In his Boss-speak, this meant he was planning to be there at his regular time, stop calling. He arrived (at his regular time) and the solution to my computer woes was an easy fix. Shut off and re-start each computer.

And he could not of told me this over the phone? Sparing me an hour and a half of trying to think like a geek? GRRR. So then I got started on freight. The store was open when I was putting away the out front merchandise. Within half an hour of one another, I was sought out by two women to figure out what they needed for their cars. Both said they were just more comfortable talking to women about cars. (Guess they think the guys will laugh when the reply to "What kind of car do you drive?" is "Blue".) So I had some counter time.

It was nearly eleven when I finally got finished. Then, my annual job evaluation was overdue. So Tim and I spent another half hour on the Tammy "atta-girls". He put me in for a raise... but said that may not happen. He asked what I have heard on the potential new job. Nothing. (I had learned the day before he was totally kidding about them having called him... not just about telling them I was a bad employee. They hadn't even called.) The woman said a week or two before they decided... it has been just over a week now.

So anyway... having a nice visit! Hoping my "oil day" today will go smoothly!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Just another Monday...

I woke up at 6:00 am... having "slept in", for me. Sunday I was so wiped out tired and never did get a nap... I was in bed by 8:00 pm. I don't think I even ate supper.

I went for a walk before it got hot. (Got 2 miles added to my running total!)  Came home and started cleaning house. With all the accrued boxes, and the visit of the grandkids, our cleaning schedule was a bit off. We moved furniture, vacuumed, swept and mopped. Laundry was started... and before 10:00 am... there wasn't much left to do. Bathrooms got cleaned, more laundry finished. A regular boring day. For supper, we had our favorite roast beef dip sandwiches. (I could of sworn they were on the recipe blog, but I see they are not! Guess I will have to add them!) I LOVE these super easy sandwiches.

While cleaning out desk drawers, I came across "points" issued by my bank... the one I use for my online activities. I had been tossing these "points" into a drawer. I figured that with me probably closing this account soon, I ought to look into redeeming these points. It was both harder, and easier, than I had imagined. I had thought I would take the accued points coupons to the bank, be led to their room of prizes, and make my selections. Not so. I had to set up an online account, list codes from the coupons, and then shop. My selections were mailed to me. I got an electric knife, and a battery powered radio. "For free!" I had an electric knife for years, that I utterly wore out. I really missed it. I can hardly wait to try out this new one. The radio is OK... especially for a free radio.

Still no word from my (potential) new employers. Mr C and I have compiled a list of nine or ten houses to check out when/ if I am called up for the tests. I will have to have a couple days to prepare for the trip, and during those days, we hope to rent a moving van  and pile in a load of stuff, to be stored in Ohio until we actually move. I will call a real estate agent and have them line up the houses for us to look at. (Really, I had always hoped to buy rather than rent. But if we have to rent just to get there... that is OK too.)
Tomorrow is our usual library day. Whether or not we make it will depend on the amount of freight I get in the morning... and how well I sleep tonight. Some days, I can only muster enough energy for a nap!

I ordered some pictures from Shutterfly this evening. I had a coupon for 50 free prints. Their expected delivery date is August 3rd.
WHAT?!... how can it take them clear until AUGUST to get the pictures here? (And August 3rd being our 27th anniversary... which is later this summer.) LATER this summer right... right? My gosh... it is the end of July! Already!
It has sure snuck up on me.

Guess I don't have any anniversary plans for this year! As if I ever do. Still, 27 years seems like a long time to me. God has been working patience in my heart.

Thanks for reading! Have a blessed day!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Weekend again...

I just got back from taking Connor and Alana home. I tried a nap... but for all the drowzies that have had hold of me all morning, I couldn't get to sleep. So the guys are all napping. Dan and Sam took Connor "Wood Sparrow" hunting last night. This is another word for "Snipe hunting". For those of you not raised in the south, A Snipe (or Wood Sparrow) is a non-existent bird that comes out at night searching beneath rocks and brush for insects. To hunt them, you sit quietly in the dark beneath a tree or bush, and have a sack or bucket ready. When you hear the Snipe (or wood sparrow) coming, turning over rocks... you prepare to catch him in the sack or bucket. The persons leading the hunt either sneak off and see how long their victim will wait alone in the dark, or hide and jump out and scare the person giving up on the hunt.

Dan and Sam thought it the most horrible thing ever done to them (several years ago), and cried for hours. Connor came rushing in last night, heart pounding and sweat dripping, declaring he had been pranked and would have nightmares forever over this. He calmed down quickly, and sat next to me, contemplating the meanness of Uncles in general and these two in particular.  I'm sure that he will be as delighted to lead a snipe hunt when his chance comes, as the twins were last night.

I was probably too old to be taken Snipe hunting when teen friends of mine and my sister Lalani learned we had never been. First of all, my step Mom was keen and excited for us to be going out after dark with these boys. TOTALLY out of character for her. Second, it just seemed these boys were up to something, and I was suspicious. I really don't know if I am more suspicious, or more gullible, by nature. But by nurture... I am suspicious!
So these boys took Lalani into a field about a quarter mile from our house. We were set under bushes and instructed to await the snipes. The guys said they would hunt over in the next field, and left us. The minute they were gone, Lalani and I got together. She was also suspicious. So we found a different spot to hide and watch. After a good while, we heard the boys coming back. They called to us, but we refused to answer. They began yelling, and still, we didn't answer. So they went and got my parents and their parents.. and a search party was taken to the field. As my friend's Dad walked past, calling out for Lalani and I, I stood up out of the dark and said "Yes? we are right here." The poor man about fell over. Of course, we really got screamed at by my step mother... worrying everyone like that. It was fine and dandy if WE were the ones to be scared, but not so fine to scare them.
*****************
I didn't hear anything about my prospective job this week, except that they did call my boss at O'Reilly and speak to him.
We got the contract to rent the house mentioned in my last post... and decided we are NOT going to sign it. It had all the liabilities of owning our own home, and none of the benefits. We can find a place to buy for less than the rent they decided to ask for that house... and maybe they can find someone less suspicious and more gullible to sign their contract. So house-hunting is back on the to-do list when I do get a call to come back to Ohio.Since they had said it could be two weeks before they called me, I am not yet concerned that I didn't get the job.

Tomorrow is Tyrel's birthday. He will be a whopping FOUR years old. He is so cute, opinionated, and accented. To meet him is to know he is a West Texas cowboy. He wears his hay-at, bay-elt, and boots. He says "aigs" and "laigs"... the cutest drawl you ever heard. (Right?) (Right? is Ty's catchword... everything he says is followed by "right?")

Supper tonight is leftovers. We have the choice of spaghetti, or tuna surprise. If I can stave off sleep until it cools down somewhat, I have to get out and walk. My "miles" for this month are pitiful... I may have 10 miles instead of 50 racked for the month.

Be blessed, and Thanks for reading!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Updates and rambles...

I have been back from my ever-so-quick trip to Ohio for a couple of days now. I am currently seated at the uncluttered and cool library, as dan and sam do their volunteering. Connor and Alana are checking out all the fun stuff there is to do here.

I had a good interview, I think. it was their psychological screening interview. So I was told they will make a decision in a week or two as to whether or not I am hired. IF I am hired... I get to make another trip up to Ohio for their drug screening and physical, and they will do a background check. Pass all of those hurdles, and I am hired!

While there, I did look at the house that is between Tom's brother Bob's house, and their Mom's house. It IS for rent, and we could "do" with it. Not sure just how much rent they are asking, but it ought to be less than we are currrently paying. It will be available in a few weeks, as they are painting and putting in new windows, as well as some minor repairs and clean-up.

It looks as if things are falling right into place. I still hesitate to get my hopes up... things have "fallen into place" any number of times in the past. Meanwhile, we have got a lot of packing accomplished.

Connor and Alana are visiting us for a few days. Perhaps I can take them on a quick trip up next time I go, although I don't want to mention it to them now, as I don't know what will be happening myself. I always hated to be looking forward to things like that as a child and then have them fall through. Then again... these two were "are we theeeere yet"-ting me just on the trip to the library... it is about 20 minutes to here from my house... not the 14 hours it takes to drive to Ohio.  Am I that brave of a Granny?

My own mom may be coming up to visit this next week... I am sure looking forward to that! And Ty'ger Jones will be FOUR in just a few more days. He is such a big guy.

Hope you have a blessed and happy day. My time at the library is finishing up. Thanks for reading.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Decisions...

I have to work tomorrow, then I am driving to Ohio. Daniel is riding along to keep me company. I got a pay-as-you-go cell phone. (Which I haven't activated yet, I will do that in a few minutes. I forgot all about it until now!) If we get to choose a phone number, I will see about using Sam's favorite number!

I will rest up on Sunday and Monday (Except for the couple of hours set aside for interviewing/travel), then we will drive back on Tuesday. That is a quick trip, LOL!

Dan and I have several audio books to listen to on our drive. In fact, I could probably make the trip three or four times and not listen to all of the books. (It seems we both had the same idea at the library and got audio books independently of one another.) We got our snacks laid in, and drinks cooling. and I plan to stop for lunch and supper when we get hungry... not just push on and starve. There are some nice rest areas along the way if I need to take a break and rest... and I am not shy about doing so!

I have driven "by myself" to Ohio several times before now. The first time was with five kids, the second was when Ben was a new driver. Becky and I made the drive when Ty was a wee baby. So I was never really "by myself" and I won't be this time either. If it makes you feel better, you can call or text my cell all day long! (I will be calling family with the cell so I can get them programmed into it!)

I fully intended to gas the car up today, as well as get some cash to take with me... but the ATM was down. All plans just shifted into procrastination mode. I came home and grabbed a snack, checked my stuff on the 'net... and procrastinated more.

But I best get out of that mode and get busy.
Have a blessed day!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Another step closer...

I had my second telephone interview this morning. It led to scheduling a face to face interview on Monday!

I don't know how many people have said , "Well, if this is what you waaaant, I'm happy for you." OK, so I stretched out the waaaant- but I "hear" it said like that even when the person is typing instead of speaking.

Ohio is not in a foreign country. I really won't be any farther away by telephone or instant message or email or blogging than I am now. Seriously, even my co-workers and cousins I have barely seen in years act as if they cannot imagine anyone wanting to move from Arkansas.
And it isn't as if we hate Arkansas. We live in a very pretty place... we just don't have any friends close by, and very little family in the area. (Two grandchildren, who will in all likelihood be more than thrilled to visit us in Ohio.) And you know what... while moving again isn't really all that thrilling of a thought, we can always move "back".

So... looks like I will "probably" be driving up this weekend and back either Monday evening or just drive all day on Tuesday. Or perhaps I will fly up, if the flights look good. (They seldom do, so I'm not holding my breath there.) If I drive, I will take my car full of as much as I can get in it, and store it with our family up there.

Have a blessed afternoon. Love to you all!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Wonderful Weekend

I had a great weekend. My daughter Becky, son Benjamin, grandkids Tyrel and Kimber, and friend of the family Paula came to visit. Cooked lots of good food, played games, took walks. On Saturday, after I got off work, we all drove out past Berryville to visit Laurie and Andrew and their children. We took Tree to his new home. (I gave baby Trees to Becky, Ben, and Tommy, and have a few left myself. I think the Trees are in the schefflera family, to answer Laurie's son's question. I just couldn't think of the name Saturday)

We were sad to see the kids headed back to Texas yesterday. I am hoping Becky will have some pictures to share soon!

I have a second job interview today, with a company in Ohio. If I get the job, we will be moving to Ohio soon. Hey, stop laughing... that's not nice! Just because we have planned to move to Ohio a dozen or more times in the last 25 years doesn't mean we won't eventually get there! We are even packing.
Oh wait, I've done that before too, haven't I? Carry on with the mirth.

Benjamin brought some "PowerisersPoweriser Jumping Stilt Classic 158-198 lbs" with him. They are like a combination stilt and pogo stick. I walked on them for a couple of minutes... and even let go of Daniel and Sam, who were holding me up and offering advise. Becky has proof of my feat on her camera. (Like my few steps were such an accomplishment... the boys have all walked (literal) miles in them!)

My regular walking has sure fallen off. The treadmill was covered in boxes and packing materials until yesterday, when Tom moved it to a different location. The area where the treadmill had been is our "staging area", where the packed boxes are stacked. I'm currently out of boxes, so packing is at a temporary standstill.



I began ebaying some of our stuff... first thing that sold... was mislaid! I think it got sent home with Becky in the bag of fabric and old jeans I had sent for her to make into quilts. Not an auspicious beginning.

Well, that's all for this morning. Be praying for us regarding actually moving. It is a big step!
Have a blessed day and thanks for reading!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Technological A.D.D.

Without consulting anything but your own brain... what is your Mom's phone number? How about your brother's?
When I was growing up... until even as short awhile as five years ago... I could spout off at least fifty phone numbers of family and friends. Most people could. Kids and adults could read maps and get from point A to point B.
Now, we  have to consult our technological friends...
Phone numbers and addresses are stored in the artificial memory of cell phones. GPS systems guide us turn by turn to any place on the planet. How few people still pay attention to their surroundings while driving?

We are becoming a people with technologically induced A.D.D. (Attention Deficit Disorder). We can't pay attention to the conversation with the person speaking to us because a text has just come across the cell phone. We are surfing the internet while talking on the phone... often while simultaneously drving! News is fed to us in "sound bites", school lessons are designed to engage all of ones senses.

Where would we be if we were not constantly in touch with everyone we know, instantly? What would happen if an EMP wave hit the planet... and all technology was rendered useless? No computers, cell phones, ATMs, televisions... perhaps no electricity or land line phones. How would we cope?

All of the technology in our lives has us multitasking to the max. Constant demands for attention come from every direction, like a house full of toddlers stoked on Mountain Dew.

Perhaps this is what leads to "overload".
The need for a nap that suddenly hits... and you shut down.
Or maybe naps just need to happen.

Yes... a strange collection indeed...

I thought it would be an interesting shot to get so many of my cookie jar lids in a shot. There are three or four not pictured. (The taller one at the back was elevated on the hat (top) of another jar, just to get so many in this shot.


Yes, it is a terrible and space consuming addiction... collecting cow cookie jars. (I do have a few pigs... and a Twin Winton Old Woman in the Shoe).
Here is one I have wanted for a long time but don't have. Not that I'm hinting.. I sure don't need ANOTHER cookie jar! Cow Cookie jar.

I have been washing knick knacks all weekend. Leaving messages for my nieces and cousins to email me if they wanted a keepsake knick knack from my our Granny (great granny, Great great granny). I have set aside the ones I have been promising forever to mail my brother. (I will do it SOON, Robbie!)
This weekend I have also been sorting through drawers and cupboards. I have boxes for several of my kids... mostly things that belong to them, yet I have had custody of for years... Some is stuff I am "donating" to said children... they may deal with as they see fit.

I flunked my walking goal for June... and should be caught up to July by the 5th. That leaves me more than 2 miles day through the rest of July just to stay on goal. Yikes! (If I don't make it.. it is just a goal... no penalties imposed! I had to set a distant goal, both challenging yet do-able... and I set it for 600 miles by the end of the year. I broke it down to 50 miles per month.)






Monday, July 4, 2011

Independence Day!

July 4th.
I have granola in the oven. This is the first time I can recall ever trying any home made. Mr C has been buying a pricey variety from the Deli at WalMart, and I thought I'd see what I could do with our own blend of ingredients. I looked up a recipe online... basically to make sure I didn't leave anything out. (Who knew it had so much oil in it? Incapable of following a recipe anyway, I used less.) Mine also has amaranth seeds in it, as well as ground flax, which were not in any recipe I found.

Smells awesome!

It is raining here. We sure needed it. I pray that the drought stricken SW gets rain soon, but I am Thankful for the rain we are getting.
We plan to grill brats today, have corn on the cob and green beans. I thought of making potato salad, but we didn't have enough miracle whip. We will make a fresh fruit salad featuring watermelon, cantaloupe, strawberries, blueberries, and peaches.

My daughter Becky and son Ben are going to try to come up this week- sometime Wednesday. Wednesday stands to be a hugely busy day at work for me... with items coming in to replenish stock sold from Saturday through Tuesday. I may be busy all day long.

Have a blessed and safe July 4th.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Well, here we go...

OK. I had a good visit in Ft. Worth with my family this past weekend. And here is the new one!

Saw my Granny (Picture: Sam (center), Dan, Granny) and Mom, my son, my aunt Jean. Met two internet friends on my drive home. once again, not axe murderers with blue barrels to hide bodies in the woods... (Picture: Christine, Tammy, Jenn)

Then this week. home... sooooo tired.
Then I was called by a company I had applied for a job with online... in Ohio. Yesterday, They called me for an interview. I should know "soon" whether I am hired or not... and moving to Ohio.

Feel strange at HOPING to move. I will miss my kids and grandkids...but Ohio is a great place for them to come visit! IF I am hired and IF we do move.

Soooo... that has been this week. Be praying for us. Thanks!
Be blessed and thank you for reading.

 




Thursday, June 23, 2011

Think Geek

The twins have placed a couple of orders with Think Geek. They are, as the " highly caffeinated monkeys" who run Think Geek call it: 100% Awesomeified.
The Geekers have some fun in every bit of the job... their emails are funny, their packing slips are funny... even their packaging is funny!




This is the bag of air pillow cushioning
"Free Monkey Breath Enclosed"

The shipping carton
A duodecahedron "Rubics Cube" type puzzle

These are the instructions on the box of the Duodecahedron puzzle
The puzzle instructions are... puzzling.

The boys also ordered a "World's Hottest Pepper" growing kit... and hope to be the proud owners of burned off mouths in a few months.
If you are shopping for something fun for someone hard to buy for... check out Think Geek. They have paper catalogs available as well as their online store.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Summer is here already?

The boys had a good birthday, I believe.

Around the house, we have had a breakdown chain. The switch we replaced in our fridge has already went out again... and I lost the receipt! It was an online purchase, so I'd have trouble finding where I ordered it. Then the microwave started zapping out on me as I was melting butter. tom tried it, with the same results. But later, it acted fine with a cup of water. So it is probably on its last legs. Then, the dishwasher. It is refusing to drain. After bailing it out, I used a plastic aquarium tube to siphon the remaining water from it. I should call the landlord on that one, it IS his machine.

I will be trying to fly down to DFW this coming weekend, to see my son and the rest of the family I have there. It may be my last opportunity to see him for awhile... perhaps even years.

I would say I have been battling depression the last few days, but honestly, I don't think I've put up much of a fight. Dissolving into tears at the drop of a hat... sometimes even dropping the hat myself. The twins, my "babies" turning 15 hit me even harder than my eldest turning 30 a few years ago. I am accustomed to being happy- just by personality. "Pollyanna" or Suzy Sunshine, most of the time. Feeling like this just sucks.

So I guess I should just "suck it up" and get on with things.

Mr C is going through one of our periodic moving manias. Looking at Moving To Ohio from every angle. Getting stuff sorted through, minimized, packed up.
Yeah, decluttering is good. Minimizing is good.
The packing up stinks... since it will all eventually have to be unpacked.
I have even gone so far as to start a couple of job applications in Ohio.
But it still feels like a rut to me. High centered. Wheels spinning, spinning, spinning... and getting nowhere.

2011 is half over. I was looking at a work periodical this morning from February. It took me a moment to realize that February is MONTHS behind us. Not just a couple of weeks, as it seems. Yikes.

Well, since I am rambling on and on about nothing, I may as well shut up. Hope you have a very blessed day!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Tomorrow is the big day...

My "babies" will be 15! They are starting their party early... tonight at 7:00... watching bad "B" movies (mostly old monster/horror flicks). Movies with special effects so bad, the boys wake me up shrieking.... with laughter.

Their first birthday gifts are scheduled to arrive tomorrow from ThinkGeek.com, followed by a delivery from Amazon on Saturday. Grandma Rose got them gift certificates to ThinkGeek, so they are having a wonderful time browsing the site today, and will probably continue to drool look over the site between movies tonight.

Tomorrow I have to stop by the grocery store to get the ingredients for their birthday dinner. Their final decision was Chicken Fajita Alfredo for the dinner, and Lemon Meringue Pie for dessert.

My idea for a 'big' gift was shot down... I wanted to take them to LegoLand in Grapevine, and stop by to see Chris while I was down there. Mr. C had a different gift in mind, but said I can go see Chris before August... just not this weekend. (Being the twins birthday as well as Father's Day.) Dad suggests that perhaps Ben and Tommy would like to take their brothers to LegoLand, seeing as how you can't get in if you are over 18, unless accompanied by a kid!

Tomorrow stands to be a major work day for me, as the store broke an all time record in sales this week. Most of the stock to replenish will hit Friday. (Tomorrow). Then I get to cook supper AND clean the kitchen as it is our tradition that you get your birthday off from chores.. Better eat my Wheaties!

Have a blessed day, and Thank you for reading.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Gee, THANKS, Arkansas....

Said in the sarcasm font...
I will be removing the Amazon links in my blog in a few weeks. I got a notice from Amazon that bloggers (and others) from Arkansas will no longer be eligible to receive fees from sales generated through their blogs, due to new State regulations.

Any income generated is already subject to being taxed, as is almost any form of income. But the new regulations taxing interstate commerce via the internet has caused Amazon to opt out of advertising their wares through bloggers in this state. So  my bloggy links will be disabled soon... and I will then remove them.
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The boys chose their birthday gifts from their Dad and I today. I added a little to what each boy asked for- items I knew they wanted. And both were concerned they were asking for "too much". Both chose items totalling less than $20. Always concerned about what things cost! And seriously, boys... you are probably the only soon to be 15 year olds on the planet who want ice trays for your birthday.
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I have a pot of beans on cooking for supper, and just made some amazingly delicious cornbread.
I think the recipe is already on the cooking blog... if not, I will add it as soon as I can. The guys will have about a sliver each with their beans- leaving most of the pan for me. I'm pretty sure I will do some fried taters to go with the beans as well.

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May you have a blessed day.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Hocking Hills

Here is a link to the Ohio pictures taken while I was on vacation. I went in this afternoon and added titles to most of them.
I will be adding a video or two to the site also, you may have to click on the site header when you get there and look for the videos on the right hand side.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Didja Miss Me?

We are back from our Ohio trip. I didn't announce it on the blog or Facebook, since there was no one here to guard the casa. Even had a couple of blogs set to "auto-post" while I was gone. So, first up... Becky informs me that this was Her and Stephen's SIXTH wedding anniversary, not 5th. I stand corrected!

We had a great visit with family, and I even got to drive down to the southern part of the state and meet a long-time internet friend, Heather. She is the mother of seven girls. So far, none of our kids are matched up like Becky and Stephen were. Heather was really sweet, and a real person... not a troll nor axe murderer looking to stuff my body into a barrel in her woods. (My BIL suggested THAT charming scenario!)


As usual, we did a lot of hiking. Tom spent several day-trips at his brother's house, doing the small chores that his brother was neglecting in order to spend time with us after work. The boys went over with Tom a few times to fish, and to swim in the beautiful little lake across the road from his front yard.

On one of  their excursions over to BIL's, my MIL and I went to town ourselves. We visited a craft mall and a huge antique mall, as well as a Glass Factory Outlet. I got several "sandwich" plates, as this is the size plate almost everyone here reaches for rather than a "dinner" plate. Instead of picking a pattern... I chose all different plates. I have a nice variety to use for dishes on the food blog! It was a lot of fun for both of us.

Monday was the 13+ hour drive home. THAT wasn't all that fun. We made good time though, arriving just 13 hours and 5 minutes after leaving my MIL's house. It normally takes us 13 and a half hours, minimum. But we didn't take time out to "stop and eat"... instead having drive-thru McDonald's for breakfast, and a quick put together sandwich at a rest area while walking the dogs and having a potty break.

Tuesday I was right back to work, and actually ended up having a full day on the job, instead of three or 4 hours. Then there was grocery shopping, cooking supper, and starting endless loads of laundry. I didn't want to get out of bed this morning. I interrupted my walk after work today to have a nap!

For supper tonight, I plan on having the boys grill some chicken breast, and siding it with some Spinach and Mushroom Salad. (Maybe we will even grill the bacon for the salad... hmmm?)

I was just too tired to make it to the library today, so that is on tomorrow's agenda.

Have a blessed day, Thanks for reading!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Coming Soon...

On June 17th, my "babies" will be 15 years old! They have been telling me of birthday gift ideas for several weeks now. For the siblings and grandparents who might want ideas of what to get these two diverse younge men... they both agree that gift certificates to Think Geek would be awesome. I'm not 100% sure Think Geek has gift certificates... but they sure do have a lot of stuff the boys like! (I usually let them find what they like on Think Geek, then go and find it for less at Amazon! (And Amazon DOES have gift certificates!)

They have yet to describe for me what sort of birthday cakes (or pi!) they want this year.

In a few more days, grandkids Connor and Alana will be out of school for the summer. They are spending at least part of the summer with their Uncles. Uncle Becky will pick them up in Ft. Worth, and after they are bored with her, she takes them to Uncle Bill. At some point, they will come see CowGranny and Grumpaw. The fun of having Mom and Dad  both come from large families is that they can visit various family members all summer.

Well, that's all for today. Hope you have a blessed Memorial Day.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Becky and Stephen

Today is my daughter's and son-in-law's fifth anniversary. Congratulations, Becky and Stephen! They are still as happy and as in love as newlyweds.
Becky met Stephen online. It was all my fault, Mr C likes to say.
I was brand new to the internet, and had googled "twins". Researching the many thousands of interesting websites led me to iVillage, and their community boards. iVillage had more than boards on twins... they had "40-ish Parents", "Raising Kids in A Rural Area", and "Tons of Kids" boards. I made friends online... a remarkable thing for me. I have never been very good at making friends.

I got to know Nola from the Raising Kids in a Rural Area board. We would "talk" almost every day via instant messenger. More often than not, Nola and I had "parrots" on our shoulders. Becky standing behind me, and Stephen standing behind Nola. If Nola and I had to leave the computer, we encouraged Becky and Stephen to talk to one another... home schooled kids getting an opportunity to socialize.

One of Nola's lifelong friends moved to the area where I lived. Nola came to visit on a vacation, and we got to meet in person! Becky was gone the first time Nola came by, but the second time, Stephen and Becky finally got to meet in person. Soon, Stephen was making the five hour drive to visit us without his Mom!

They didn't rush things... they were friends for four or five years before they were old enough to even consider getting married.
Now, they have 2.3 children and are living a life blessed by God.
Happy Anniversary, Becky and Stephen!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Missed!

The storms hit last night, but the most violent parts missed us. I stayed up until 10:30 when it finally became apparent that the worst of it was going north and south of us. So I was sure not wanting to get up when the alarm went off at 5.

My Mom is in Russellville- actually on a mountain top north of there at night- but her husband is home in a suburb of Ft Worth. He had hail larger than golf balls last night, as tornadoes ripped through Tarrant County. My eldest son is in residence in an exclusive high rise in downtown Ft. Worth. I saw three storms tracking one right after the other showing "hook echoes" pass right through downtown Ft Worth, and I was really in a bit of a panic. Another son is a few miles south of Chickasha, Oklahoma, where a tornado touched down. Thankfully, all my family is safe.

I did get tickled at the Weather Channel fellow trying to pronounce some of the affected towns in Oklahoma. He has obviously never heard the song "Okie from Muskogee"... as he pronounced it Musk-oh-jee. (Mus-koe-gee, with a hard G sound). And Chickasha is Chick-uh-shay. Sam still has fits over Ouachita... "HOW do you get wash-it-awe from THAT?"

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Well, time to get hopping here. I had an allergy-pill-induced nap earlier. Slept right through Mr C being home for lunch. Now trying to shake off the sleepies and get with the program... I have a lot to do!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Weather or Not

We are 50 miles from Joplin, as the road meanders... somewhat less as the crow flies.
Our weather this afternoon is calling for a "perfect storm" condition. Hot moist gulf air will meet a cold front, just to our west, sometime after 6 this evening. The weather guessers are saying to batten down the hatches.

The boys are doing their library volunteering at the moment. I am just cruising the net and catching up.

I'm trying to decide what to fix for supper this evening... whatever I fix will have to go with the roasted veggies! Since I have to stop by the store for milk on the way home, I may pick up some brats or something.

I know I had something to blog about when I sat down here, but it all fled my mind the minute I pulled the blog page up!
Hope you have a blessed afternoon. Hug someone you love!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Lavender Rose


I changed the blog header to a picture of my lavender rose. They are a bit beat up due to all the storms we have had. Still, for being marked down clearance plants... I am thrilled at their appearance just one year later.
The second picture here is of my miniature rose bush I have had for years. It has now been planted in the ground for a year. (Before, I kept it as a potted house plant.)
I just realized I don't have a picture of my big crimson red roses... the other discounted bush from last year. It is full of huge blooms.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Friday!

Work went by pretty quickly this morning. I was home before 10, and started right in on my treadmilling. I was dragging before the first mile was up... so at 1.1 miles, I turned off the machine and headed to my bedroom, where the bed attacked and forced me to lay down. About an hour later, I was awakened by a thunderclap that sounded like it was right outside my window.

I got up and brought my shoes out to the front room, and was putting them on when Mr C got home for his lunch. I had a bite of lunch, then got back on the treadmill. I just can't seem to get with the program today... I am still yawning.

I had Sam cart my weeds outside to the front steps and yard, where they are getting nicely watered by the rain. The boys both remarked at how naked the house looks with all my plants outside. I figure I will leave them out until tomorrow sometime. We will clean once I am home from work tomorrow. Barring unforeseen amounts of freight, I have to really stretch out my work to get in two hours on a Saturday.

This morning, wouldn't you know... there were THREE police cars in the parking lot out front. Where were they yesterday when I thought I needed them? Before the new McDonald's opened up cat-a-corner from us, there were usually two cops chatting in the parking lot in front of the store several times a week. Since Mickey D's has opened, I seldom see them any more. Not that they spend all their time at McDonald's... just stating what I have observed.

I hope Mom gets a chance to come back up this weekend. If not, oh well. We sure had a nice visit last time she was here.
Have a blessed day, Thanks for reading.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The response time to the "Panic Button" at work is about three to five minutes...

You might wonder how I know this.
I tried it out this morning!
That's how I know.

As you may be aware, I get to work pretty early. I had been there for about an hour this morning, and was already to the point of stocking the shelves out front with new freight, when I thought I heard someone walking across the roof of the store.

A few seconds later, I was SURE I heard another someone walking across the roof of the store. They were doing something to the air conditioning vents! Since it was a quarter to seven in the morning, I really wondered if these men on the roof had a legitimate purpose in being up there messing with our AC units. (I had heard on the radio just yesterday about the increased amount of thefts of commercial sized units going on in Tulsa and surrounding areas.)

I thought I ought to call the police and have them look into just why these guys were on the rooftop. If they were legitimate- hey, my bad! But if they were up there swiping our AC units, and I just assumed they had a legitimate purpose up there... now that would be pretty unexcusable.

I didn't rush right over and push the "panic button". First off, I thought I would try the local police station. Since it wasn't an emergency, I just looked up and dialed their regular phone number. I got a busy signal. So I tried again after a few seconds. Still busy! After a third time of reaching a busy signal, I walked to the front of the store and pushed our silent alarm panic button. Then, I tried the police again. Still busy!
Next I dialed my boss's cell phone. He didn't answer either... but he happened to be just arriving in the parking lot about then.

I told him about calling the police and pushing the alarm... and about that moment the alarm company called us back. Boss talked to them and explained why I had called, and that it was OK... it was just the roofers there to fix the leaky roof!

I'm going to be teased about this forever.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Time's fun when you're having flies...

Or something like that. I can't say that the annual fly invasion is all that much fun. Just try getting into or out of the house without a few of these pests inviting themselves in. Mr C spends 15 minutes or so every morning and evening killing them. When the outdoor temperature drops, the flies land on the ceiling inside, and that's when he gets them.

The allergies haven't flared up so bad today. (Thank you Lord!) Mr C is out getting some garden plants. Here it is past the middle of May, and we are still dipping into the 30's at night. BRRR! This morning was our weekly grocery run. Charcoal and Boy Scout Juice have become staples on the list. We cook out pretty much all year around, but more so in the summer. Tonight, I plan to make Tacos. (I had planned to plan on cooking out burgers on the grill, but forgot wht I planned until I thawed the burger for Tacos. No, I can't just use it for burgers, we have pre-formed frozen burgers to use up for that, and the big clump of hamburger meat isn't enough for burgers.) (Maybe I ought to write my menu plans down so I don't forget them, huh?)

Tacos are NOT one of Mr C's favorites... but he is the minority. He objects to the "greasy corn tortillas"... so I usually warm him up a flour tortilla for his. Tomorrow night I will use up the extra grilled chicken from last night and the extra corn tortillas from tonight to make a chicken casserole.

Thanks for reading. Hope you are having a very blessed day! Hug someone you love!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Ahhhhh-choooo!

The sun was shining bright this morning, reflecting into my bedroom as if the lights were on in the boys rooms. I eventually decided I wasn't getting back to sleep, so I got up. It was 6:35.
This really was sleeping in, by more than an hour and a half. The boys trailed out of their rooms before my tea was even made.

I got my tread milling done. The boys played some video games, as they knew I planned for today to be a house cleaning day. We got started. Cleaning up "hot spots" where clutter collects. Putting things back where they belong. Vacuuming, dusting, sweeping.... stirring up dust. Tom moved the stove and the fridge, and cleaned beneath and behind both. Then he took the stove apart and really cleaned it well.

I started sneezing in there somewhere. By the time we were working on the stove, my nose was dripping like a faucet. Kleenex wasn't helping- I was using a paper towel every 10 minutes. Eventually, I took one allergy pill. In an hour, I decided to use the heavy duty dope- Advil sinus. By the time it began having any effect at all, I had a sinus headache and my eyes are packed for vacation... heavy bags! The sinus dope knocked me out for an hour or so.

I could sure tell when it wore off... the nose faucet began again. I switched from paper towels to wash cloths. I took more dope. I can tell when its four hours has expired for sure. I am thinking this may be pollen as well as dust. Miserable!
Well, that's all my complaining for now. I hope you have a great and wonderful day!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Oh boy!

My last child to call me on mother's day was my #5 child, Tommy. It was after 10 at night, so we didn't talk long. Tommy mentioned he had been up for well over 24 hours, but it was his night off. He also mentioned his boss had tried to call him.
The next morning, I got another call from Tommy. His boss had asked Tommy to come in to work. So, instead of telling the boss no... Tommy headed the 40 miles in to work.
He made it 39.5 miles. Fell asleep at the wheel. Did a barrel roll in his truck. Tommy says barrel rolls are not all they are cracked up to be in the video games.
He is OK. His truck is not.
Blogger is not allowing me to upload pictures right now, but you can see the truck on Becky's blog.
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It has been a fairly quiet week on the home front. More rain, grass growing.
The roses I got last year on clearance at WalMart are going to beat the band. The red ones are just gorgeous. The second bush, which we thought last year might be white or light pink, has actually turned out to be a very pale lavender. 
The Tree has been out on the porch a couple of weeks now... I set it out too soon! Who knew May 1st was too early? We had a hard frost on the 3rd, so Tree is rather sad looking. I know it will recover... this is Tree! Tree survived the twins as toddlers. (They once plucked every last leaf off it.) I need to get Tree transported to my friend Laurie, who has a house with double height ceilings. Or else cut Tree waaaay back. It is getting too tall even for the porch, which has a good foot over our ceilings.
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Have a blessed day. Thanks for reading.