Tuesday, November 27, 2007

One day at a time.......

These last few weeks have been an interesting journey, good and not so good....tomorrow mama goes home to the retirement center where she lives. Is this a good thing......????? Of course it is....is it a bad thing???? It could be. She still isn't walking well with a walker and for at least the time being she will have to have round the clock care. Her mind is good, but her body is failing her. There is also the issue of $$$$$....having people around the clock is very expensive, not to mention her rent and other expenses. This can worry a litter of children! For some reason I feel like I can't worry about that today. Tomorrow my brother and i will go get her and take her home.....I'm not even sure how we will do that. She's really difficult to get in and out of cars and just to get around. I don't think I've been giving enough attention lately to staying in God's Word, but this scripture just popped out today.....Romans 8:25-27..."But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will."

That was it, God's will. I can't make mama better, or make her have enough money....all I can do is trust God and feel secure in the knowledge that His will will be done. I want mama to get better, I want her to get up and enjoy this winter of her life. I want to see walking down to bingo or to get her hair done. I want all that.....I can't make it happen. He can. If it is His will.....He never fails! I need to remind myself of this daily! Make that moment by moment!!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Wrapping up Thanksgiving!

Here's papa in the motor home with his buddies, Jack and Mikey! They keep a close watch on him as you can see.

We started out our adventure on Sunday morning before Thanksgiving. It takes two days to get to Russell's sister's home. We almost always make it to Commerce, GA and spend the night in the parking lot of the outlet center. We got a late start and got there after the stores closed, so no shopping that day.

We got to our destination and went for supper at Aunt Sue's....our youngest flew in Wednesday morning. He is the only one of our children who made it for Thanksgiving.

Yes, he's holding a beer, he's almost 22 now. Hard to believe, but he's very responsible and only drinks one or two.....that I know of, and that's all I want to know. :)

There was lots of cooking, Sue treated us every nite with a wonderful meal. She's really quite the gourmet cook.

Mother and daughter spent time together....

Sue and Johnny's boys were home from college to spend Thanksgiving with family.....

Johnny and Sarah after dinner sharing a moment.............

Russell and I sharing a moment with our babies..........

And then it was time to come back home.....full of food and fellowship. Everyone back to their everyday lives.

I'm thankful for:

God for giving us every good and perfect gift....especially our salvation.

My husband who is a new gift every day.

A safe trip especially for papa.

Time spent with family.

Knowing that other family members were celebrating Thanksgiving in different places.

That both my older boys called during the day.

That Claudia and Tommy had their own quiet day. Claudia was sick and couldn't come.

That mama was taken care of and spent the day with my sisters and brothers and her grandchildren and greatgrands.

That we live in America. I am forever an American. I believe in this country as it was formed by our forefathers.

For the faith of our fathers, living faith.

For friends.....some near and some far away!

I'm thankful!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Giving Thanks

We had a great time! I give thanks for this family.....Russell, his sister Sue and his parents. I just want to share a little of the trip in pictures first.....so here we are on our way snapping pictures out the windows of the beautiful leaves....

Well, so much for the pictures of trees, although there are trees in the background is you look really, really close, this is me.......proof that I do drive the motor home.....too bad there is no audio of Russell screaming in the background, "HOLD YOUR LANE! HOLD YOUR LANE!" I was doing the best I could!!!! That is a big old thing with my car behind.

More tomorrow, we got home this afternoon, praising God for a wonderful trip. Papa did so well....we were all secretly worried that he wouldn't....he went two days with no oxygen at all! That is a big thing and we all give thanks!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Wow, how time flies....

Well, we are in our home, sweet home away from home, parked in the parking lot of the outlet stores in GA......for the nite, we will be home tomorrow.....I'll have more to post then!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone....

We made it to NC! Russell's dad had a great trip and is doing so well here. We have that to be very thankful for! Our computer isn't doing that great up here and is sooooooo slooooowwwww.....I can hardly believe tomorrow is Thanksgiving.

I will have pictures later. But until then, may everyone have a wonderful Thanksgiving. I realize I have so much to be thankful for and each of you are part of that thanks!

Saturday, November 17, 2007


Dawn honored me by asking for my Chicken & Black Bean Enchilada recipe. So here it is!....

3/4 lb. skinless/boneless chicken breasts (I just use as much as I want to)
3 slices bacon
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup picante sauce
1 16 oz can black beans, undrained
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
1 t cumin
1/4 t salt
1/2 cup sliced green onions (once again I do not measure)
12 flour tortillas (I use the soft taco size)
1 1/2 cup monterey jack cheese
1 cup extra sharp cheddar

toppings: lettuce, tomato, sour cream

Marinate chicken breasts in fresh lime juice and fajita seasoning for at least an hour). Cut chicken into strips. Cook bacon, remove bacon and pour off all but 2 T drippings. Cook chicken and garlic. (you can also grill the chicken and freeze it so you'll be able to make them quickly)Stir in 1/4 C picante sauce, beans, red pepper, cumin & salt. Simmer until thickened. Stir in onions & bacon. Spoon 1/3 c mixture in tortilla and top with cheese, (I just add the cheese in the pan and let it melt) Roll, place in lightly greased 13X9 baking dish. Spoon the remaining picante sauce of enchiladas (I use enchilada sauce because I like that better) Top with remaining cheese and sharp cheddar cheese, bake at 350 15 minutes covered with aluminum foil.

Delicious! Enjoy!

Those last minute things.....

O.K. today as I was frantically packing the motor home to leave at o'dark thirty (as my daddy used to say).....my son and his two friends came to have their early Thanksgiving! That is so David. He's very ADHD, very ,very! But he's sweet....he's in the middle with the cat. I got out the enchiladas and fed them. They left. Friend Carol came and two of our precious surrogate daughters came to visit while they were in town for a baby shower. From left to right, Carol, Katie, Mary Grace and me.

My little sister is here this weekend staying with me and visiting with mama. Yes that's her the young looking ,skinny one. Yes, next to the chubby older sister. She dragged me out to walk this morning, then she came home and did crunches and I don't know what all else. She wears a size 2.

We are finally almost all packed to leave in the morning. We rode over and got Russell's parents stuff. NONE OF US TRAVEL LIGHT! No, you would think we were off to tour the country! We will be on the road for two days....so we ask prayer for traveling mercies. Especially while I'm driving the motor home, pulling our car behind! I can only drive two hours at a time because it totally wipes me out. I'm stressed to the max the entire time I'm driving.

So good Sunday to all....We will have our laptop so I'll try to keep up!!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Early Thanksgiving

We leave Sunday on our journey to North Carolina to have Thanksgiving with Russell's sister and family. We are praying that papa will be able to make the trip without any problems! Since I won't be here, tonight I'm having an early Thanksgiving with my son who lives in town. Only instead of turkey, we'll be having his favorite, enchiladas! I hope he isn't disappointed because I made them with a new recipe and they are a little different. The original recipe came from a friend of my sister Cathy that she got while living in Austin, TX...so you know that has to be good!!! The new one comes from my sister Debbie and she says they are even better....ooops, I didn't say that Cathy!!

Well, David didn't come, not that unusual, so my sister and my friend and my husband and I enjoyed the absolute best enchiladas I've ever put in my mouth!!! Well, except for the other sister's recipe. Not to brag just remember they weren't my recipe.

It's Friday!!! My favorite day of the week....oh, how I hope it isn't like last Friday nite!

So I'm finishing this post on Saturday morning. My little sister got me up and we walked 2 miles....then she did 200 crunches...no you didn't read that wrong. Sickening isn't it....of course she does wear a size 2 which is also very, very sick! She doesn't want to be like mama when she's 84.....so she's actually doing something about it. Anyway, I sure hope I lost 10 lbs on that walk cause I sure need to! :) Now I'm off to pack the motor home for our trip tomorrow! I know, I know, I haven't even started and have no clue what to take!!!!! Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Happy Birthday Lois!

When you have a big family, you have lots and lots of birthdays! We are always happy to celebrate another year of life. Lois has been married to my oldest brother for over 40 years....she's a saint let me tell you. They have 4 children and she is a decorator for Penney's. She's creative, calm, patient, loving.....and other stuff too. All our children wished she was their mother. And she sings! She's very, very gifted. So Happy Birthday SIL! I love you!

O.K. I realize the last few posts have been kind of downers, so I'm determined to be UP!!! Things are definitely going in the right directions with just little side trails which I will NOT talk about today. Mama is looking better than she has in a long time and working at her physical therapy so she can go home! Plus she's lost over 10 lbs. Can I be admitted??? I could stand a 10 lbs loss in the next 4 days!

So, now I'm off to make squash casserole to freeze for our trip to North Carolina for Thanksgiving.

Paraphrase of Psalm 61 2 & 3.....I called to the Lord as my heart grew faint; lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.

And He did!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Happy Birthday Papa

Today is Papa's 82nd birthday! The miraculous thing, and the great tribute to our mighty God, is that one year ago today he was diagnosed with lung cancer. The doctor's gave him a short time to live....That day in the motel room, we talked about the fact that God has our days numbered and when He is ready He will take us home, but no person doctor or otherwise, can know that time. So many prayers have gone up for him.....his oncologist finally admitted that prayer was what was working, as he was shaking his head.

Some ask the question, then why does God let some stay longer and take some even when both are being prayed for. Well, I guess I'd have to ask God that question. Deuteronomy 29:29 says this about that....."The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law." There are just some things we will not know...

So Happy Birthday Papa.....breathe easy today! We love you!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

He always provides....

God always steps in if we just trust that He will.....mama was transferred to a rehab facility today which is what we wanted so that she can get stable on her feet again....she was not happy about it and didn't want to go. But as the day wore on, her spirits improved! When you move from one hospital to another (I'm guessing), they take pictures probably to cover their butts. And speaking of butts, they were taking pictures while I was gone to get some of her clothes...when I got back she said did you know they took pictures of my butt...and that is the biggest butt I've ever seen! Of course I cracked up and folks, remember this, laughter is truly the best medicine. Plus it was nice to hear her sense of humor back.

Tonight is the first nite I've actually been home early since this all started. I've tried to be productive and get the wash done and some cooking.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Another day!

Thanks to all who commented with words of encouragement! I really appreciate knowing there are people who care enough to pray! That is what is keeping all of us together these days.

My sister, Cathy,(pictured above with mama) who lives in Pensacola came Saturday and stayed until late Sunday afternoon. We are all trying to do what we can and be with mama as much as we can. She had a small procedure this afternoon on her shoulder which we hope will make her better able to use her walker. The medicine confused her a little. Tomorrow she will be moved to a rehab center to get her strong enough to go home! We are all looking forward to that day!

Matt, the youngest, was home for the weekend and I hardly saw him. I told him I'd make it up to him next time!

I still haven't heard from my oldest, and I'm still just having to trust Him with that.

This is Monday, Tuesday will be a better day!

As my world turns....

I really don't know how people without the Lord live through days of crisis. These past few days have been a whirlwind of emotion, and may be for a while. Thursday nite I had a call from my son saying he was going to kill himself. Just as an aside, he is a veteran of the first Gulf War, since it is veteran's day. He didn't as far as I know...someone went to check on him and that's the last I've heard. I didn't sleep well that nite, but i didn't fall apart either. I just said "Lord, I know you are there and you are the only one who can save him from his destructive lifestyle." And I have to put my trust in Him, knowing that I can trust Him, even with my child's life.

Friday, I had that early dr. appt. then attended a luncheon....meant to rest in the afternoon but it just never happened. At 10 Friday nite, the retirement center my mother lives in called to say she had fallen and hit her head and what did I want them to do? ????? I jerked on some clothes, drove over to find her still on the floor. They were afraid to get her up because her blood pressure was sky high....I may have been foolish, but I had to get her up...so I got down, had her put her arms around my neck and we struggled up and sat her down. She had a huge lump on the back of her head and was dizzy and nauseated, so they called the paramedics and I called my brother and away we went to the emergency room.....I don't know if any of you have ever been to the E.R. on Friday nite late, but it is not a pretty place! Thankfully, the scan of her brain was o.k. and now they are running lots of tests. Her blood pressure continues to fluctuate and stay high. I'm just praying she will get steady on her feet so she can return home.

So after a couple of sleepless nites, I'm home to sleep! Tomorrow we will deal with tomorrow.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Beautiful Friday

I was up at dawn this morning to go to a 7 a.m. doctor's appt. Why oh why would I schedule a 7 a.m.??? Especially after I was up most of the night with phone calls from my son who was obviously impaired. Drama was rampant and I'm really not trying to make light of it, it is just that this has been going on for so long and it grows really weary. I just pray that all you prayer partners will add Paul to your prayer lists! One light note about all this, the phone rang several times during the nite and my husband slept blissfully through it all. This morning when he woke up and I was telling him about it, he said, and I slept through all that!? I said yes, and count your blessings!

But really by the time I got out of the dr. office, the sun was shining beautifully and it is chilly! In a little while I go to help my mil decorate for a ladies luncheon, so I'm doing that thing I do and wondering what to wear, and pasting my everything is o.k. in my world smile on my face so that I don't make everybody miserable.

I really do plan to enjoy the rest of the day! Thanks be to God who gives us peace that passes human understanding and helps us to stand in the storms!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

The Monarch....how do they know?

I hope you can see these.....Monarch butterflies were everywhere. Every year at this time, they begin their migration to Mexico...but they stop and lay their eggs on the milkweed and leave enough nourishment there for them to survive, then they take off to fly to Mexico.

How do they know when and where and how do their fragile wings take them to Mexico. Only the plan of the Almighty. That just can't be an accident. We so enjoyed watching them hang from the trees and when the wind blew they all flew up like a cloud of beautiful colors.

We were so blessed to be able to see them and watch as they just did what comes naturally to them. It really made our trip special.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

A little peek into our anniversary trip.....

These are a few of our beach pictures taken on our 12th honeymoon as we like to call it!!! I think this was our most relaxing trip.

When we got to the first R.V. park, Henderson Beach, we were excited to have a front row seat to the power boat time trials for a race that we assume was Saturday. It was exciting to see those really fast boats and the helicopters chasing them,filming I guess.

The weather could not have been more perfect! We put our shorts on and walked on the beach kicking ourselves because we hadn't brought bathing suits....although the next day the purple flags were flying, meaning there were dangerous "pests" in the water which could be jellyfish, red tide or a number of other things, so we wouldn't have been in the water anyway.

We spent a lot of time walking with our dogs and meeting all the other campers and their dogs. We rode bikes for miles and we ATE. Before we left I lost 4 lbs.....they're back! I didn't realize how chubby I was until I looked at a picture of the two of us we got our waitress to take one nite when we were out to eat. It wasn't too bad just looking at it on the camera, but when I put it on the computer I said "who is that fat girl you were with??" I'm seriously back on my sensible eating plan today!

That was just a little peek, more later....you know when you get home, you have to clean that sucker and unload and you know I always take about 4 times as much as I ever wear, just in case! :)

Sunday, November 4, 2007

If I ever.....

I think I've only done one meme since I've been blogging, but if I ever do the 100 things about myself, I'll just go ahead and get ahead and tell you all my pet peeve. I've lived in Florida all my life, specifically in Panama City, Florida, home of the world's most beautiful beaches, for all but 5 1/2 months of my life. For that short time I lived in Fairbanks, Alaska, and that's another story but I'm glad to be where I am! O.K. I digress...Husband and I were walking with the dogs and walked down to the boardwalk that leads to the beach. We stopped to get them a drink of water at the shower the sand off place...Since there was a man showering the sand off his feet and I being the friendly person I am, I asked him if he had been swimming in the Gulf. As he replied yes, his walkie talkie went off and he told the person on the other end that he was down at the ocean.....now, please....there is the Atlantic Ocean, the Pacific Ocean, the Indian Ocean, but this is the GULF OF MEXICO.... Gulf not ocean. I know a lot of people call it the ocean and I guess that's o.k.....but please know it is the Gulf...:) just a little bit of info that nobody asked for!

We're having a great day and this is our actual anniversary. Last nite, I asked my dear, forgetful husband if he remembered what we were doing 12 years ago and he said "on our way to our honeymoon?" I said sadly, "honey, we weren't married yet! We were at our rehearsal dinner!"

This morning, we got up and drove over to Another Broken Egg and had a fabulous breakfast. Russell said, we don't go to breakfast a lot do we? To which I replied, no, we're too lazy to get up and get ready that early! Glad we did today!

Friday, November 2, 2007

Just a little preview....

Words seem so important to me and I do not use the word awesome very often, but to walk on the beach in Destin on a November afternoon and look out at the gulf is so AWESOME! When I look at the gulf and realize that it's boundaries were set by our God and that it can go from slick calm to roaring chaos in a day, or even in an afternoon, when you know that you can't see other lands but that many people share these same waters, yes, now that is AWESOME. It is so beautiful here. I'm almost relaxed. DH didn't kill me over the credit card.....although I don't think I'll be shopping a lot while we're here....which is so hard with all the outlets! I could save a lot of money...oops, better not say that too loudly! We are taking the dogs for long walks and ourselves on long bicycle rides, and not sweating!!! A very good thing in Florida......this is our winter! I'm just mad that we didn't bring our bathing suits! We didn't think we'd need them, and the beach is so beautiful that I had to get in the water just a little in my shorts. That's just a little preview of our 12th honeymoon, pictures later......

Thursday, November 1, 2007

We're off!

Well, our bags are packed and we're ready to go.....the dogs are sticking close because they know something is up. We're hooking up my car and the bikes and when we stop to get baths and dress, we'll start off on our anniversary adventure!

I'll take pictures! Have a great rest of your week!!