Saturday, December 14, 2013

Up in the air

Oh, y'all. I'm having a stressful moment. We're so up in the air right now. Boxes are packed all around me, making a little read-to-move igloo. And I just don't know what's going to happen. Wasn't I just in this waiting game a few months ago? Shouldn't I have learned to relax. Trust. Not stress out. Man, that's so hard.
Our rental place now has served it's purpose, and we're moving on by the end of the month. We just don't know WHERE for sure!
Our landlords here have been amazing. For crying out loud, she just brought over chocolate cupcakes, for Fred's birthday tomorrow! {{heart}} They are so.very.sweet.
But we've been dealing with a lot of problems with our place. And, despite their best attempts to remedy the situation, it's going to require some intensive work, due to water and mold damage. They have released us from our lease, and we're all packed up.
Now. The where.
Fred is working 40 minutes from here, and it would make a world of difference for him, if we can shorten that commute. We're working on getting a house that's only about 5 minutes from his route, but we won't find out until sometimes this next week if it's ours. The wait!!! Ahhh!
Did I mention that his birthday is tomorrow, and Christmas is 10 days away? And my home is in boxes. {deep breath} It's the uncertainty that pains me.
And, also, I miss my color! I was just over at Sara's Art House, oohing and aahing over the color and happiness. Oh-- I miss my packed-up color happiness, my craft supplies, my pom poms for little hands to play with, my bright dishes!
Pray for us? For a home soon. For answers and security. We love it here in the Rio Grande Valley. The people have been amazing to us. The weather is fantastic. We just need our place. :) Thank you!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

A Merry Little (early) Coastal Christmas

The kids and I are excited about Christmas on the coast, y'all!!
It's our new theme.

When we moved, we sold or gave away about half of what we owned. We simply didn't have room to bring it all. That included our Christmas tree and much of our d├ęcor. (Yes, that was hard.) I think there's still a box of stuff in my grandfather's garage, too....including our stockings. Need to get those!
Thankfully, we found adorable mini trees at the 99 cent store! And a large white tree at Goodwill for a whooping 10 bucks. We bought two packages of ornaments, also from the 99 cent store, and gathered the rest along the coast. Proof that you can decorate on a budget! ;)

Wanting to stick to our coastal theme, but not spend a fortune ordering a bazillion cards, we decided to make them. Time to get creative!
 This is what we came up with:
Seas and Greetings!
 Four little elves helped me draw, cut, and glue.
There you have it. Family-made and coastal themed!
The best part is that everyone could contribute.
(plus, glitter- and sequin-use, which is a given.)

Saturday, November 30, 2013

The great resurfacing

It's me!
I'm still alive...down here in TEXAS.
 Yep, we moved. We made it. And I promptly got busy unpacking, exploring our new area, getting to know the homeschool group. And forgot all about this here blog.
Oops. Sorry.
But, now that everyone is gone and thinks this online home has perished, I'm back!
Resurfacing, y'all. Even if there are no y'alls left.
I miss the writing, recording. I miss the inspiration that I feel when I start planning and showing.
Okay, so if this is for myself-- Hellloooooo ((echo echo))--
Here's what happened, in a nutshell~
Fred quit his job, we drove the almost-1K miles down to the tip of Texas, to a sweet rental house. We bought state park passes, started our every-few-days to the beach excursions, and settled into our Texas lives.
Fred got a great job here (although not a great schedule--eek) and I'm working on resuscitating my art, among other things.
Oh, and I made friends.
And went parasailing!

Yep, good stuff happenin' down on the tip of the US.
Perhaps the best thing, right now, is that it's nearly December (an hour left of November, in my time zone) and I'm okay with that.
This is huge.
Winter usually kills me.
But here, on the Gulf of Mexico, we're still wearing shorts.
I still have sunshine.
My windows were open today.
And my soul rejoices.
We left because I couldn't do another winter.
I thank God for making our move successful, providing for our needs along the way, and giving us peace about the unknown.
Now that I've run down the gist of the last few months, I can get to the artiness and daily living stuff on next posts.
I'm back!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

IF you could do anything....

I haven't updated in two months but, really, not a lot has changed. The house is on the market. Within 48 hours, we had an offer and accepted. From there, though, things fell apart. Our buyers couldn't get their financing and, like happens so often, the deal was off and our house went back on the market. Things are looking good, though, with multiple showings a week. I'm confident that it will sell quickly, and we'll be on our merry way.

This whole venture is out of our comfort zone. I mean, who has four kids and just up and moves across the country? (Okay, not clear across the country, but a good 900+ miles away, so it counts in my book.) So what started it all? One day I thought, "What would we do, if we could do anything? Where would we go?" followed shortly by, "....and why can't we?" So there you have it. We discussed, prayed, strategized, and starting making moment-by-moment choices that would lead us on that path. Because sometimes you just have to ask yourself, "where do we want to be in 5 years?" and make the necessary adjustments.
Otherwise, obviously, you will rarely get where you aim to be.

 Nothing will change in your life if you don't do something different from what you have been doing.
E. Perry Good
Sometimes it's the little things that we need to take control of, or alter. But occasionally those moments come along, when you are meant to just DO something big, something kinda crazy, to totally alter the course. Our lives here have been wonderful, with good friends and family surrounding us. It's just simply not where we're meant to be. And when you know, you just know. It is time.
I'm trying so hard to live purposefully now, while we're in limbo. Honestly, it feels like our life is on hold....hold ....hold....elevator music while we hold our breaths and wait for the new chapter to begin. I don't want to miss life as it happens NOW, though.

I want these moments remembered, captured, preserved. Sometimes-- probably most often-- the waiting is what reveals the most, and develops us. It's a game now, of bouncing our minds back to the present when preoccupation with the future threatens to take over, or worry rears its ugly head.

We've even had to remind the kids over and over, that now is where we are, and now is what will continue to be in the forefront of our minds. Like it or not, we all live in the now.

It's amazing watching kids work out their experiences through play. A friend of mine was just discussing this, in regard to her preschoolers playing "tornado" after the recent Oklahoma tornadoes, and threat of tornadoes here.

My kids, however, play "moving to Texas." I kid you not. My Littlest Guy will set up the dollhouse (naturally surrounded by dinosaurs, to stand guard) and the extra stuff is "put away because they're moving to Texas." Cracks.Me.Up.
Their talk and explanations often follow, "....when we move..." And, yes, we talk about it. We plan and hope and dream. We know the grass isn't greener, it's just "for us." We know there will be obstacles, and we talk about these, with each other, and with the kids. I just don't want it to consume us. Job change, house change, state change, even climate change. It's big for us. But we've gotta take it day-by-day.
The plan for our summer: Trust, Enjoy, eXpect great things, Act accordingly, and Savor the moment.


Sunday, April 7, 2013

Dreaming Big & Moving On

I've been absent from blogland for awhile and, if you don't keep up with me via facebook, you may not know why. So here it is:
We're planning to move.
We are working every waking moment to get this house flawlessly cleaned, painted, decluttered and staged, to be put on the market by the end of the month. Yeah. Swallow that down.
We're dreaming big, people. Texas big.
My great-aunt wrote and asked me why. Do we have family there? Does Fred have a job there? Friends? She's kind-hearted. Just curious.
But the answers are:
No, no, and no.
So why?
Because it's our dream. It always has been.
I've wanted to move farther south for about as long as I can remember.
I don't do winters well, friends.
I suffer from S.A.D. in a big way. ((For my well-meaning friends, let me assure you, it's not something you can turn off and on. I can't snap and feel okay. I can't think of those less fortunate and suddenly feel all warm inside because I have a home.))
Symptoms can be treated with special lights, medication, etc, but why treat the symptoms when you can help fix the problem?
Besides winter-onset-depression being an issue, our favorite activities are seasonal, and we only get to enjoy them about 6 months out of the year now. Moving to a climate that runs 20 degrees warmer in the winters is a HUGE incentive. Aaanndd, think about how much closer we'll be to the coast!! {sigh}
We've waited, guys. A very long time. I've been married almost 16 years. Lived in our first little starter home for 10 1/2 years. It's been a patient wait. We've been happy here. Maybe a little crowded, but happy. And, really, it never felt too crowded until it was too cold to go outside. We've waited and we've waited, because the time wasn't right.
Suddenly this year, it "felt" right. We knew. And then pieces started fitting together. It was as if they were magnetically drawn towards each other, just pulling and clicking into the right spots. Both of my parents started dating. My Papaw plans to move to NC when my aunt does. Suddenly these things that I was feeling responsibility for were taken care of (yes, I'm an Oldest Child.)
Then Fred said "yes." He's always hesitated before. It wasn't the right time. But now, although nervous about it, he is excited and on-board.
We started submitting applications and resumes, and got immediate responses, phone interviews. The jobs are there. Started looking around at homes. The costs are comparable. Suddenly it was no longer just a dream, but a plan. A PLAN.
Because, really....why not?
Why do people stay in jobs they hate? Or live where they'd rather not live?
Whatever the reasons, I'm not okay with that. I want to pursue my dreams. At the very least, I can say I did. I tried.
So, for the time being, everything but school and "house stuff" has been put on hold.
We are pursuing a dream.
We must walk consciously only part way toward our goal and then leap in the dark to our success.”

― Henry David Thoreau

“The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.”

― Michelangelo Buonarroti

“If you're bored with life, if you don't get up every morning with a burning desire to do things, you don't have enough goals.”

― Lou Holtz
“When defeat comes, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound, rebuild those plans, and set sail once more toward your coveted goal.”

― Napoleon Hill

“Patience is not passive waiting. Patience is active acceptance of the process required to attain your goals and dreams.”

― Ray Davis
These are a few of my inspiration quotes. Above all, I feel that this is God's plan for us, and He is directing us. I feel secure in that, and know that He is far more able than I am to work out the details.
Pray for us? Support us emotionally? Even if you don't fully understand why we'd uproot and move, we'd appreciate your love and support. We all walk different paths. I believe this is part of ours. :)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Words with Friends

A few months ago, one of my boys took an extra long time brushing his teeth.
After he was in bed, I found this in the bathroom:

Yep, his name spelled out, in hair thinga majigies, combs, tooth brushes.
Creative spirit!
He started something, y'all, and my friends and family joined in!
My dear friend Suzanne's hubby did this from his office, in Little Rock, AR:
And she responded with this one, from her home:
Then I found some Joy, while hiking.
It is usually where I find the most joy--
outside, with my kids, in the warmth and fresh air.

Another friend, Ann-Marie, sent this from her office in Rockford, Illinois:
(I totally thought that was toilet paper on her desk, at first glance!)
And, below....
behold, my dishes.

Oh, and another from Suzanne. Isn't this sweet? :D

Monday, March 25, 2013

Meet Thor

This is our newest family member, Thor Joseph Adler. He is a pyr/golden lab mix, 9-weeks old.
Quite a large baby! Isn't his yawing face just precious?
My little sis, Julie

He's such a good pup-- always comes right to me when I call him.
He stays next to me (on a leash) while I run and walk, too.

Awwwww, just presh, you have to admit.
I'm not a "dog person," but this little (big) guy stole my heart.
We puppy-sat him twice, and did a lot of reading before bringing him to our home.
He's like the Pied Piper-- neighborhood kids started coming out of the woodwork to give him some sugar.
Are you a dog or cat person? Have any experience with Pyrenees or golden labs? We're cat owners, so most of this is new to us. I can read and read, but experience speaks louder.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Pour Jons

This coffee shop isn't just any old coffee shop, folks!
Talk about combining great food and atmosphere!

She's so talented, friends. And she happens to be my Dad's girlfriend's daughter. (Mouthful, yes.)

Seeing as I have ZERO- ZIP- NADA musical talent, I greatly appreciate those who do.
Especially impressive to watch someone play guitar, harmonica, and sing.

Love Pour Jon's new vinyl shop, too! They even have the little 45s! And, believe it or not, I actually own a record player, and bought a few (including a record from the Rocky soundtrack, for my Man.)
Also. I want a brick wall like that in my home.

How fun are these two?! Makes me want to go dye my hair all mermaid-like!

And, of course, my sister, feigning a fall out the open two-story window. Niiiiice, Julie.

 If you live in my area, and haven't been to Pour Jons yet, you have to go!!
I highly recommend the French Toast Coffee. //drool

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Remember those volcanoes we sculpted, using our salt dough recipe?
A week later, they were dry and ready to paint!
We used acrylics to paint the inside red, the outside brown, and add grass around the base.

 I gave them creative license with their eruptions. Some of them had an all-out explosion on their hands, and others had rather inactive volcanoes.

Love how their personalities come out in their art.

 Progress, on some of their work:
We'll add more dimension to our dioramas next time, with pebbles and twigs, etc.