Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Life Lessons

It's been a really long time, and a lot of changes have come about.  I'm no longer a Carolina Girl, and I'm no longer happily married.  But I digress...

Just wanted to get my thought for the day out.

***People come in to your life for a reason.  When you have learned what you are to learn from them, it is time for them to move on.  You must accept this and not be bitter or angry at their departure.*** 

I was looking back and remembering those who've come in to my life and those who've gone out of it and what I learned from them.  I've tried to condense what I learned from them into something less than a novel.

Over the years, from different people, I've learned...

~strength and courage.  I've learned that I can and should stand on my own and be an independent woman.

~the down side of trust.  The walls I've built are too high for anyone to climb and too thick for anyone to tear down.  I'm sure over time, those walls will deteriorate, but for now they are standing strong.

~that I should never take a single moment for granted.  If you get too comfortable, life has a funny way of pulling the rug right out from underneath you. 

~that I should never be afraid to tell someone what they mean to me.  I learned that the *really* hard way, and I'll never get that chance with one person in particular.  It took me years to even be able to go to that cemetery, and now all I can do is put flowers on a grave and talk to a piece of stone with a name carved in it.

~that some people come in to your life to test your breaking point.  Some will use you until they have used you up if you let them.  From them, I've learned how to say no.

~that I have to take care of me.  I've struggled with this one for so long because I felt like I was being selfish.  I still struggle with it every day.

~that forever does exist, but it's just not in the cards for some of us.  Noone wants to believe that maybe they're meant to fly solo, but for some of us, it seems to be the hand we're dealt.

~that you don't have to be a beauty queen or a genius for people to look up to and admire you. 

~that you deal with what comes your way, adjust, suck it up, and move on.  Good things are waiting ahead.  Over the span of a lifetime, it's taken such a small fraction of that time to learn that.

~that I should laugh every day and not get so bogged down in worry.  I wish I had learned that before the vertical wrinkle that rivals the depth of some glacial crag took up permanent residence front and center on my forehead.

I've learned a lot more, but these are a few that stand out to me today.

Monday, February 15, 2010

My Thanksgiving Blessing's Progress

On November 26, 2009, I was blessed with two very good reasons to be thankful. First and foremost, the prayer I've prayed for years was finally answered...my youngest daughter was finally coming home. I bought her ticket that day, and she stepped off a plane the next day. I thank the good Lord every day for bringing her home to me.

Second (and the reason for this post), we rescued a purebred Miniature Schnauzer. She was such a scruffy, abused, timid, untrained little mess, and I knew I had my work cut out for me. I've wanted a mini for so long, and this one needed me as much as I needed her.

Her coat was so matted that it took us over two hours to cut the mats out.

She knew no commands at all.

She cowered at a raised voice.

She'd spent the majority of her life in a crate that was too small for her, so she wasn't housebroken or leash-trained.

She chased Gracie.

She had some food aggression issues and ate way too fast.

She ate her own feces.

And worst of all, she had several large spots on her back where there was discolored or missing hair. Every professional in the animal care field agreed that it was a chemical burn...something had been poured or spilled on her.

My "clearance puppy", as Michelle called her, stole my heart.

Fast forward to today, February 15, 2010.

We've visited the vet a couple of times for an exam, a spay, and getting her where she needed to be health-wise.

We've gone for lots of walks and are still working on leash training.

We've worked on lots of commands and tricks. She knows at least a dozen now.

She has a basket full of toys and a nice big crate that she sleeps in only at night or when noone is home.

She and Gracie have become playmates, and she gets very upset if Gracie lets one of those drama-queen meows out.

She is not only house-broken, but she rings a bell I hung at the door when she needs to go out.

She LOVES to go for car rides, no matter how short or long they may be.

She has blossomed. She is no longer timid or food aggressive.

And the most outwardly noticeable change...we found a GREAT groomer. Kudos to "All Four Paws" in Beaufort, SC. She finally looks like a Miniature Schnauzer and those discolored spots on her coat are GONE.

Check out her before (November 26, 2009) and after (February 13, 2010)!

Monday, January 18, 2010

It made my day

One of my pet peeves is people taking up more than one parking spot.

The Hub and I spent the weekend in Florida, and on our way home yesterday we stopped at a rest area. As we pulled in, there was a pickup parked all kinds of stupid, taking up the 3 spots closest to the building. We parked in a nearby spot, and as we were getting out of the vehicle, a Florida Highway Patrol officer approached the moron's truck. He spoke loud enough that it was easy to hear his side of the conversation, which went like this...

"Sir, can you explain to me WHY you are parked this way? Do you have a good explanation for parking the way you did? You see these other vehicles and the way they're parked? Each of them are taking up ONE spot, and you're taking THREE. You need to move your vehicle and park the way you're supposed to. There's just no sense in parking like this. I'd hate to have to write you a ticket. Now, go on and park right."

Friday, October 16, 2009


The other day I noticed a spider web in front of one of my windows. When I went out to tear it down, I saw something that was so strange looking that I had to go grab my camera. How bizarre is this thing??

After watching it for a while, The Hub took care of it because we weren't sure what the heck this happy face, spikey little bastard was and whether it was poisonous or not.
I got online and googled images for "Happy face spider" and that freaked me out even more. Try it and look at the crazy damn creatures you get! Anyway, after several pages, I found out that it's called a crab spider.
Even though I know what it is now, I hope I never see another one. We have enough of a problem with Wolf spiders, brown widows, and other miscellaneous creepy crawlers spinning webs everywhere outside!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

The find of the century for me

I absolutely love antiques, and over the years I've acquired a few really nice pieces. One that I've wanted since I was 13 has eluded me all these years. When I'd actually find one, I couldn't afford it. That changed yesterday.

My friend Michelle (you can check out her work here at http://mdgdesignsjewelry.com/default.aspx), Breeze and I had our semi-weekly goof-off day and went to a couple of antique/thrift/consignment stores here in town. I walked into one of the rooms of the first store and there it sat. I gasped, looked at the price tag, and thought, "Someday I'll have one." The owner then told us that the merchandise on the floor was 50% off, and my wheels started to turn. When I asked if it was 50% off the original or the marked down price, I'd already decided that I COULD afford it either way. She said it belonged to a friend of hers, so she was sure it would be off the original price. She then walked away, and I continued to look at other things in the room, feeling myself drawn to this beauty. The store owner came back in and said that she had called her friend, and the friend was willing to sell it for 50% off the marked down price. My jaw dropped, and I immediately pulled the tag and told her I'd be buying it and taking it with me. Check it out!

A Singer treadle sewing machine! WITH ALL THE ATTACHMENTS!

When I got home last night, I did some research, looked up the first digit of the serial number, and found out that it was manufactured between 1908-1909. Upon closer inspection, I found that the bobbin is still threaded, but the thread is so old that it breaks if I pull too hard.
I am so excited that I finally got my treadle machine!!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Robbed by Alzheimer's

I love this picture. That's my maternal grandparents in 1942, soon after they married. She was 14, and he was 21. It was a different time then. He went off to WWII while she kept the home fires burning. They wrote letters (and she still has them). When she was 18, they welcomed their first child, a son, into the world. Over the next few years, they had two daughters and another son. They weren't wealthy, but they were rich in what was important. They were married for 53 years and only had eyes for each other. They were in love with each other as much after all those years as the day they wed. She lost him right after breakfast one day in 1995. She put up a brave front for several years, but in truth, a huge part of her died with him that morning.

She's waited for 14 years to be with him again. Every year, she has deteriorated more and more. Now, she is weak, frail, and bedridden, and Alzheimer's Disease has taken her mind. Some days she doesn't even recognize her own children, but she knows him. She doesn't know that he's gone anymore. She sees him and talks to him. She's so confused and tormented, and it rips my heart out.

I know the day isn't far away when she will join him again. While I will mourn the loss of one of the greatest women I've ever known and be sad for myself, I will be happy for her.

My beloved grandmother is the fifth victim in my family who has been claimed this thing. With all of the medical advances and research, Why do we not know what causes it? Why do we not have a cure? WHY is this disease still winning??

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Here we go again!

No, not actually "going" as in moving. We've begun chapter, oh what is it now, 432? of "Living in a construction zone". Having the house in chaos drives me nuts, but the payoff in the end is worth it.

First, the girls have switched rooms again. With Breeze going off to college, we opted to give Kat the bigger bedroom. So this is once again Breeze's room...remember the lilac walls with that black harlequin pattern on the accent wall? Yeah, that one. Carpet's gone, wood floors in. Walls repainted, new window, new baseboards, trim, etc. And this time, I chose all paint colors. I went back to Valspar's Shrimp Toast that I had originally used in the living room.

And now Kat's new room...

Here's a taste of what we started with when we bought the house.
Yeah, gross.

For a while it was like a dark cave, designed by a teenager.

Well, this is the same room now. I hadn't put the window treatments up when I snapped the pic.

And one last pic...
This is what I finally decided on for the living room. That huge wall unit is now gone, along the chair in the left side of the pic.

We now have ZERO carpet in this house. We've put down Pergo flooring in all 3 bedrooms. We've replaced all the windows, exterior dooors, and interior doors now. My craft room will be getting Pergo flooring this weekend also.
2+ years of work, and we're seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. The house is *almost* finished!