Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Are you currently making plans of any kind? What kind? What emotions are associated with the planning process? Tell us about one plan you had to cancel due to the current situation which shall remain nameless. Ha!

Plans lately revolve around the swiftly approaching wedding. The emotions associated with it are a mix of excitement, anticipation, and how in the world do we have a child old enough to get married?!

We had to cancel some travel plans, but we are hopeful they will be able to be rescheduled for a later date when things are hopefully back to normal.

2. Last time you saw stars, either literally or figuratively?

I'm not sure when the last time was I saw actual stars. We've had a lot of cloudy weather, and on the nights when the weather was favorable to see stars it was still light out late enough that we went to bed before the stars came out.

3. Blueberries yay or nay? Blueberry pie, blueberry muffins, blueberry yogurt, blueberries by the handful...what's your pleasure?

I love blueberries. My favorites would be by the handful, then in pie and muffins. I don't care for them in yogurt. Actually it's the yogurt part that gets me. I ate an astounding amount of yogurt when I was pregnant with Kenneth, and ever since that when ever yogurt is presented to me my stomach twists and churns and is all "Don't go feeding me that stuff, girl!"

4. Swim against the tide, swimming upstream, in the swim, sink or swim, makes your head swim...choose one of the 'swim' idioms listed and tell us how/why you relate?

Makes my head swim ... I am feeling pulled in so many different directions with things that I should be, or could be doing that it's making my head feel all wonky.

5. Sum up your June in a single sentence.

June was a mix of major highs, and low lows, and everything in-between.

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

Exactly five weeks after being told she has cancer, my sweet mother-in-law passed away. Her funeral though sad - of-course, was also such a celebration of her life. She had touched the lives and hearts of many, and hearing all the memories was more joyful than sad.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Adventures of Mask Wearing

     Noting the state of the refrigerator and pantry, I knew I had to venture out to restock both. I got what I could at Aldi before heading to Walmart for the rest.

     I dutifully donned my mask before entering the store, and grasping my slightly crumpled grocery list I rallied forth to complete my mission in as little time as possible.

     Nearing the end of my list I noticed I had missed something and would have to turn around and march to the back of the store to get it. "Oh!" I said to myself when I saw it. Big mistake. Opening my mouth like that, and inhaling on the 'oh' sucked a minuscule piece of lint from my mask right into the back of my throat where it clung stubbornly.

     Immediately I had an intense need to cough to get rid of it.

     As everyone knows coughing is frowned upon in today's world. I tried to suppress it, but the need was so great that I barked out a violent cough while carefully avoiding looking at any of the other customers.

     One cough didn't do the trick, but I wasn't about to cough more. I abandoned all other items on my list and made a beeline for the checkout. Tears were streaming from my eyes. They didn't roll down my cheeks though. The mask conveniently soaked them all up for me.

     Never have I ever checked out at such speed before. I paid and then fled to the safety of my vehicle where I coughed in peace and dislodged that piece of lint.

     Hopefully they'll let me back in next time I need to go shopping.

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Saturday marks the first official day of summer! Whoohoo! Your favorite thing about the season?

I don't know that I have a single favorite thing. Instead I have an assortment of things that make summer sweet. I love having the windows open, and hearing the sweet rich tones of the wind chimes on the front porch. I love not having to bundle up to go outside, or having to deal with all the extra clothes. I really, really like all the fresh fruits and vegetables.

2. Love it!, labor of love, not for love or money, no love lost, love handles, love does, love-hate relationship, misery loves company, tough love, love will find a way...pick one and tell us how it applies to your life right now.

Love will find a way ... Kenneth and his lovely fiancee are getting married soon. With the world seeming to be turned upside down and inside out they have had to make many changes to their original plans for the wedding. They've risen to meet the challenges with grace and a quiet confidence.

3. What's one thing currently causing you to seethe? One thing currently making you smile?

I'm not sure anyone actually wants to hear about what is making me seethe, so I'll keep it short. Seeing someone take advantage of a bad situation to make themselves appear important, while causing suffering in their wake ...  deep breaths, Mary Ann, deep breaths.

One thing that is making me smile currently is seeing Steven reading. In every spare minute he has he will be curled up somewhere with a book. On a blanket under our maple tree with our cat snuggled up next to him, curled up in the corner of the couch, on the floor under the school table, riding in our vehicle, everywhere and anywhere its books, books, and more books. I love it!

4. Of the following to-dos found on a summer checklist (here) which three would definitely make your personal list of summer want-to-dos?

roast marshmallows over a fire, go berry or peach picking, dangle your feet off the end of a dock, sit on a porch swing, watch the sunset from a beach, nap in a hammock, go barefoot in the grass, collect seashells, play tennis, go fishing, build a sandcastle, catch fireflies, eat a soft serve ice cream cone, make a pitcher of Sangria, swim in a lake, stargaze, ride a bike, paddle a canoe or kayak, make a summer road trip, throw a frisbee

Do you make an actual list?

You would think with all the lists I make I would have a summer list, but I don't this year.

The three items on the list I will be doing this summer are: going barefoot in the grass, eating a soft serve ice cream cone, and going berry and peach picking. We are already making plans to get a lot of peaches this summer. I'm hoping to can and freeze at least eight bushels of them.

5. Thursday is National Splurge Day. What might you splurge on in order to celebrate?

My splurge of choice would be office or art supplies. I won't be splurging on Thursday though. I'll probably wait for that until I go back to school shopping.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

Somehow LV's mother is still hanging on. We went out to Ohio over the weekend to see her again. She is such an inspiration. Even with all her suffering she is in a constant state of thankfulness and cheer.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

The Mystery of ...

... the creepy light bulb.


     The children had already made their way upstairs to bed, while LV and I enjoyed a few minutes catching up on the happenings of each other's day before we retired for the night.
      Before heading to bed I checked the laundry room and just as I came to the end of the hallway before turning into the laundry room the light turned on. There was no one there!!
     Things like that aren't supposed to happen, especially not in our little farm house.
      I tried to remain calm and walked back to the living room where LV was still relaxing on the couch. He looked up as I entered and immediately saw there was something amiss by the expression on my face.
       "I'm just a little freaked," I admitted and proceeded to tell him what had happened.
        He very sweetly, didn't laugh at my paranoia. Instead he took my hand and together we walked down the hall to the laundry room with the light shining brightly at us.
         Just as we got to the end of the hallway, it flickered off. In the next instant I tore my hand from his clasp and flew back to the living room. I'm not in great shape at all, in fact most days the very thought of exercise is exercise enough for me. You'd never have guessed that though as I dashed down the hallway at a speed rivaling that of an Olympic sprinter.
        LV stayed there quite unruffled and discovered the light bulb had not been screwed into the socket tightly enough and somehow the weight of someone walking on our creaky old floor had messed with its connection.
        I'm happy to report that the mystery of the creepy light bulb was easily solved, and there is nothing weird going on in our home. And I'm once again moving at normal, ladylike speeds throughout the house.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

The Month of May

    Looking back at the month of May this morning, and feeling that even though it was a busy month for us there was nothing all that monumental for most of it. Or maybe it's because of one huge thing that it's making everything else look insignificant. More about that later.

   Honeycombs was Steven and my favorite game to play during the month of May. This was the closest we ever got to not having any gaps between matching tiles. He thought it deserved a picture as proof that we were getting better at it.


     Everyone needs a Sharon to cry and pray over you when life knocks you down. 
     This little bird flew into the living room window and knocked itself out. Sharon dashed outside and picked it up. Holding its silent little body in her hands the tears flowed as she prayed that God would heal it.
     After a few minutes it started showing signs of life, and soon sat on her hands where it remained for half an hour before flying away.


     Steven and I made a batch of dandelion jelly. We waited for a beautiful sunny day when the dandelion blossoms opened and went outside to gather a bowlful of the prettiest blossoms.
     It took patience and not minding that our fingers turned yellow to carefully remove all the tiny petals, being careful to avoid any green bits.
     We steeped them for several hours before draining the liquid and using it to cook up the jelly.
     It turned out to be absolutely delicious. Some thought it tastes almost like honey, while the honey dislikers of the family disagreed. We all agreed that it was worth the effort to make and should become an annual springtime event.
     A dandelion jelly making day once a year doesn't sound bad to me.


     Weather permitting, we enjoyed getting out of the house on the weekends. Walking over I-68 on the little bridge at Sidling Hill was a big hit with Steven. He would have happily spent quite a bit of time walking back and forth.


      Things are finally beginning to look like summer may be on its way. Seeing the cows enjoy chewing their cud while relaxing in front of the waterfall is one of my favorite scenes.


~~~~~

     My driver's license had expired during the quarantine. I renewed it online, but I couldn't go get my new card until the DMV opened again. 
    Going to the DMV has never been on my list of favorite activities, but this time was the worst.
    I arrived early and joined the line that was snaking its way out across the parking lot in a weird 'S' shaped pattern all while maintaining the required distance between our fellow humans. Everyone stood there in grim silence behind their masks, listening to the noise of the traffic on the turnpike. 
     Some clipboard clutching man from the inner workings of the DMV would approach the first person in the line and then they'd disappear inside the building while the rest of the line moved up, still maintaining its odd serpentine pattern.
    When it was finally my turn the clipboard clutching man asked my name and then some health related questions to make sure I hadn't coughed or sneezed in the past 24 hours. He coughed as he checked the little boxes on his clipboard and then I was ushered inside and told how to conduct myself while there.
    Clipboard guy coughed again, and went outside to screen the next person.
    I hurried through the photo process, not caring too much how it turned out. Just get me out of here was my only thought.
    I was relieved to be done, and make my exit to the sound of clipboard guy coughing yet again as he checked the health status of the next person in line

~~~~~
     One of our weekend ramblings into nature took us to Cooper's Rock. I never tire of the views from the top!


     Hollow trees are such interesting things. Hoping to maybe see an animal nest inside we peered in, only to find some hikers have been using it as a trash can! It was disappointing!


     Also disappointing is seeing the amount of graffiti on top of Dan's Mountain. The view from the top, across the valley to the distant mountains was spectacular. And if you squinted your eyes just right you could almost imagine the graffiti covered rocks looked like Grandma's crazy patch quilt inviting you to enjoy a picnic.




     The 'huge' thing I referenced in the beginning of this post was the news of LV's Mom having cancer. She is fading alarmingly fast. We got to spend time at their house this past weekend. It was sad, emotional, and yet so sweet. She is eagerly anticipating getting to meet her beloved Saviour face to face soon. We pray she doesn't have to suffer long.