Monday, May 28, 2012

Treasure Hunting in My Own Backyard

There may be a move for me in the near future.  Today I began to measure my furniture to see what might fit in the prospective "lil" house and what I might have to part with.  Two things I'm pretty sure are not going to fit are cedar chests, one that belonged to my parents and one that belonged to my daughters paternal great grandmother.  Today I began to go through my parents to see if there is anything I could part with and maybe combine the contents of the two.  I remember when I took this chest I did not go through everything.  At the time, it was just too hard, too bittersweet.  I knew there were several family Bibles.  Today I found one for my mother, my father which originally belonged to my maternal grandfather, my maternal grandmother, my maternal great grandfather and one VERY old tiny very brittle little New Testament.  No idea who it might belong to but I'm sure it's family.  I also found my tiny white New Testament with my name in gold on the front.  My mom's is full of things that were special to are very special to me.  I also found both my parents Baylor diploma's and the programs and invitations to their graduations.  Wow!  There were numerous paper clippings including weddings of others, my sister's and mine, a photo and article of me winning the trick pet contest in 1964 and a third place ribbon for another year; a horse show trophy from 1969, articles events and photos of both my parents through the years, of college, the Navy and others.  I found my  baby book, the little pink sign that was on my bassinet in the hospital, and numerous cards, drawings, from those early years.  Two of my parents marriage books, one made by my mom, the other by my grandmother.  My mother was a keeper obviously.  I am my mother's daughter.  
However, the true treasure of the hunt was part of my mother's trousseau, the white satin nightgown and robe from her wedding night.  It was folded up inside a box, very wrinkled.  As I took it out and held it up I could see how tiny it was.  I imagined my mom, tiny too, wearing it on her wedding night to my father.  As the tears rolled from my eyes, I know and remember how true and deep their love was for each other.  They were committed to each other to the end of their lives, and beyond.  I do not know what is in store for me down the road, however, I am prayerful that my daughter and her husband will know the true life long loving God-filled relationship like my parents had.  
You know how I love treasure hunting.  What treasures to find right in my own backyard.

Then the man said, “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.

Encourage One Another

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Way Out West

I have learned to love riding my horse way out here in West Texas.  I remember in the beginning, I complained about there not being a tree in sight, unless is was a scrub mesquite bush.  What I saw at that time was just red dirt, nothing green and nothing pretty.
Since then though, the fact that there are no trees has been a huge blessing.  I can see the skyscrapers downtown in one direction and as far as I can see the other direction.  There is nothing to block the way.  And I can see a LONG way in all directions.  It's refreshing. It's the wide open spaces.  And I like it!  You don't see the same things as back home like deer and hogs and cotton tails.  On a West Texas ride you might see poisonless snakes, soaring hawks, pokey turtles, slithering lizards, scampering quail, jack rabbits, butterflies and prairie dogs.  You'll hear the the sound of a train whistle in the far distance and the roar of a jet plane somewhere overhead.  Everything seems far off.  You'll smell the sweat of your horse and the sweetness of sunflowers.  You'll see fields of blowing wheat or snow white cotton.  And the sunsets are beyond description.  Being able to see for miles leaves the whole sky in view.  Those I will probably miss most.

It will be different going back home and riding the roads in the trees.  It'll be greener and more humid.  I'll most likely be hearing the buzz of mosquitoes in my ears.  There'll be more gravel, more pump jacks, and more traffic in the once quiet solitude where I use to ride.
I guess I'll get use to it, like I got use to this.  I guess I'll love it, like I learned to love this.  I guess as long as I've got a pony to ride and a trail to follow I'll remain a cowgirl at heart, no matter where I am.

Encourage One Another

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Virtual Designing

Life is not about "things" I know.  I've had my lesson in that when my sister and I were told we could have nothing of our dad's from his second wife, not even any personal things.  I got a couple of flannel shirts which I cherish and that's about it.  I still like to look at them though, they just don't mean as much.  As I get older, purging "things" gets easier.  So here's my new idea.

I've been steady reading my new favorite book of design "I Brake for Yard Sales and Flea Markets, Thrift Shops, Auctions and an Occasional Dumpster"  by Lara Spencer.  I'm learning a lot and I love love love the idea of designing rooms or homes around reusing other peoples furniture, art work, etc.  In lieu of my current situation, hoping and planning to move in the very near future and not wanting to buy really one more thing, I had an idea.  Since I love "saleing" I'll go, but I'll virtual buy treasures....I'll photograph them and walk away not purchasing them and create a design with them later.  I'll start a file with these items in it and go from there.  Actually I don't even have to "end up" with the item, someone else can be buying it...I just get a photo.  So that's what I did today.  I found some great items at some great prices that had I been able to, and had a truck, I would have purchased.  I also hope to maybe have some sort of shop where I find and buy these fabulous things and then resell them.
Below are the finds of the day.  All the prices are the ones quoted with no negotiation since I did not plan to buy them.
 Not sure but I think the set was oak.  It was heavy and well made and the price was a steal at just $50.  It had a few marks but could most likely be cleaned up or painted. This would look great in a breakfast nook or small kitchen. I loved this set and hated leaving it behind.

The next 4 pieces were all at the same home.  Very eclectic.

 This mirror was probably made of a plaster of some sort as it was VERY heavy.  The mirror was sitting below it and these gold sconce type things went with it too.  I could see this piece above a fireplace in gold.  The gold makes it a bit more formal.  However, it could be painted, white perhaps, which would make it somewhat more casual.  it might also look great above a couple of club chairs.  I'm not sure I would mount those other pieces, they were just sort of weird.  The price of all three pieces was $40.
 This pair of Egyptian art pieces were very different.  They would make a great accent wall piece.  I'd think about painting the frames to kick their flair up a notch or to be the color you're adding to each room.  I did not see a price on these, but I would just based on the rest of what they had that they would have been about $10 for the set.
 This peacock was just too fun.  A gal had it in her hand and put it in her "pile" as I was arriving.  I just loved it.  A fabulous accent piece for a seating area in a den or family room.  The colors, gold, teal, green, peacock blue were brighter than the photo.  This piece was $10.  It was probably from the 60s.  The leather boots were great as well, in pretty good shape with great stitching up the top.
 These boots were similar but a little more worn.  The only price I saw on shoes was $4 and these would have been a tremendous buy.  Buying boots that are in good shape for a good price in almost any size is a must.  Everybody wants a pair of cowboy boots.
 This table looked to me like it had "good bones".  While looking underneath I saw no "designer" name, in fact it said "made in china".  It was very sturdy however, and with just a little cleaning up and polishing it would be nice just as it is.  It's price was $30.  It could also be painted, however, it would cover up the inlaid design that was on top.  I liked the little shelf on the bottom for placement of something special.
OK, this door was so cool and had it not been so tall, 6'8", I would have taken it home.  The glass was beveled and a price sticker of $35 from Lowe's was on the back but their price was $3!!!  I would have had to put on my creative mind to come up with just the right spot or idea for it.

So I guess I'll start my file/pile of photos and see if this really pans out or is just a whim for today.  I've got other photos of stuff I've bought or liked so I'll add them in too as most of them were found the same way.  I already have two estate sale notices for this week so we'll see if I make time to go.  With this new idea I can go the first day and see and possibly photograph anything I like since I'm not going to buy it.  The first day is always the highest day so I usually don't go.  Maybe I'll change me tactic.  I'll let you know how it goes.

Encourage One Another

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother Knows Best

Paul wrote, “I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.”
- 2 Timothy 1:5 (NIV)

(I love this photo.  My parents at our last family vacation together at South Padre Island Summer 2002)

I wish my mother was here for me to tell her how much I love her.  I wish she was here for me to tell her how much I appreciate all she did for me.  I wish I could tell her thanks for all the things she did that I never thanked her.  I wish she were here so I could thank her for always praying for me, for my husband and for my daughter, her grandchild.  I could count on her for that, but I don't think I ever thanked her.  I wish she were here so I could thank her for my faith.  Without her, and her sharing her faith with me, her love of God and Jesus and what that meant, I may not have had it.  Without her living her faith, I may not have seen it.  She shared that with others.  Without her unconditional love I may not still be here.  She was a role model of goodness, kindness, caring, sharing, loving, and friendship.  She never spoke an unkind word to anyone or about anyone.  She was a good friend to others.  She believed in the goodness of the world.  She took care of us no matter what the cost.  She suffered much pain in her life and yet she moved through it in order to love and take care of the ones she loved.  I wish she were here for me to tell her how much I appreciate that.  I wish she were here now for me to tell her how much I appreciate all she taught me about cooking and sewing.  I wish she were here for me to tell her how much I appreciate her hands making my wedding dress, helping me pick out the fabric, the pattern, and then taking the time to create it just the way I wanted it.  She and my grandmother sewed it together with loving hands; with loving hands they sewed on the trim and hemmed the hem.  When I put it on, it was beautiful.  I was beautiful and they had sewed it with love, just for me.  I wish they were here so I could thank them.

(Wedding dress)

I wish my mom were here so I could thank her for every time she tucked me in at night, every meal she cooked when I was growing up, every time she drove me to school, every time she took me shopping for school clothes, every time she cooked hamburgers and took them to horse shows, every time she cheered as I rounded a barrel, every time she gave up something so I could have something, for every sacrifice she made, for every time she called me on the phone, or didn't give me advice I didn't ask for, and every time she supported and loved me no matter what, unconditionally.  I wish she were here so I could thank her for teaching me how to love my child unconditionally.  Without feeling it, I don't know that I could ever have done it.  What a great gift.

(Sharing at Disney World)
(Her wedding day)

I wish she were here so I could thank her for taking care of me when I was sick, for coming to help me when Jolie was born.  I wish she were here so I could thank her for every card and note she sent with articles or things she thought I'd like to see or read about.

(Note from mom)

Mom, thanks for looking down on me from heaven and for being there when I get there.  Mom, I wish you were here so I could thank you for all the things I forgot or didn't thank you for.  I cherish who you were.  I admire who you were.  I wish you were here so I could thank you for the times you prayed for me for things I didn't know I needed.  I wish you were here so I could take you out to dinner today or cook dinner for you, give you a corsage and be with you in church.  I wish you were here so I could hold your hand today and tell you I love you and how much I appreciate you.

(Our last Mothers Day 2002 in Elgin)

I wish I had been more appreciative when you was here.  I wish I were more like you.

Mom, I love you for all the things you gave me, for all the things you did for me, for all the things that still live in my heart, and for all the memories you created in love.
Happy Mother's Day mom!

Exodus 20:12

New International Version (NIV)
12 “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

"Saleing" 101... Number 1 "You Snooze You Lose"

No literally don't even walk away without your hands on something you want at a sale or it may be gone.  The first lesson in "saleing" is if you want it, pick it up and make an offer or pay for it.  I knew this, I just didn't follow the rule.  This morning I saw this western lamp that was pretty cool.  Not the coolest ever, but cool.  I made an offer on it and they refused.  It was very early in the morning so they weren't ready to make any deals.  I really didn't think through what it would have cost new until I walked out to the car.  There was only one lady still there who to me did not look at all like she would be interested in anything western.  I got the money from my wallet and walked around the corner saying "I changed my mind I"ll take the lamp".  They said, "this lady just bought it"....thus, you snooze you lose.  So while I was a bit disappointed, like I said it wasn't the greatest thing ever, however, it would have worked in what I hope to be a more western/country feel in my next abode.  Lesson learned!

Encourage One Another

Thursday, May 10, 2012

We Are On High Alert

Me and Ikey that is, until the thunder and lightening stop.  My little pup is petrified of thunder.  I'm not talking a little scared, head under the pillow scared.  I'm talking out of his little mind and heart scared.  He sits up in the bed facing the window from the moment he hears the first little rumble in the far away distance til the last rain drop falls.  He can hear it miles away and he anticipates that lightening strike like a hammer hitting a nail.  Last night he had so much anxiety he was panting furiously.  There is nothing I can do for him.  There is no way to soothe him or settle him down.  He's just beside himself and on top of me.  He sits on my chest like a sphinx.  He will eventually lie down but he never takes his eyes off the window.  If he is very very still I can fall back to sleep, albeit I cannot turn or roll over for chance of stirring him.  Eventually I will wake up and find him curled up and asleep too after all chance of something terrible happening is gone.  Poor little guy.  Thankfully for him where we live there are very few thunderstorms...not near enough in my opinion and in the needs of the land.  But as far as Ikey is thunderstorm is too many.

Monday, May 7, 2012

An Almost Perfect Riding Day

I don't really know what would be classified as a "perfect" riding day...but today was pretty close.  The sky was overcast, giving a rest from the hot beaming sun Midland has chosen to dish out early this year.  It was a tad bit on the breezy side...just this side of windy, but nothing to blow my cap off.  No dust was blowing, that's the main thing when the wind blows.  The temperature was 75 degrees.  Seriously between 1:30 and 3:30 pm, the temperature was 75 degrees.  I took a photo of the bank sign on my way home to prove it.

My horse was quiet and easy going, cooperative and pleasant.  Although I love riding almost any horse, I like riding mine best.  I know him better, his little quirks and jitters.  There might be some surprises, but very few.   I guess a friend to ride with might have added a little fun and bit of a social side, however, I'm so use to riding alone that that really doesn't matter much.  I listened to a little country music via "Pandora" for part of the ride and then just listened to life around me the rest of the way.  The country side in west texas can be a little lacking from south central Texas where I use to ride.  South Texas is filled with lots of trees and wildlife, cattle, creeks and ponds.  However, you can't see very far for the trees as they say.  I have gotten use to the openness of west Texas and being able to literally see for miles.  I like that.  So all in all, I'd say it was a perfect day for riding.  My pony would probably say so too.  He got a little bath and then a bucket of grain and some alfalfa.  What better way to end a day than a cool bath and a full tummy.

Thank you God for the blessing of my horse and my ability to ride!

Encourage one another!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

House Shopping...To Rent or Buy..follow the yellow brick road.

Have you ever been house shopping?  If not, don't.  It's time consuming and frustrating.  It's also a bit mind boggling.  Most of the houses we looked at have been on the market for a little while.  Most of them were dirty, literally dirty.  It was unbelievable that folks were charging as much money as they were and they had not even been in these houses obviously in months.  There were some that I knew would need some work.  I never imagined I would be looking at houses that folks just neglected and don't care about.  When my house was on the market, there was not a dirty dish, dust on the TV or a bed unmade.  There was pride in the fact that my house was nice and clean and ready for someone to view.  I wanted folks who saw it to appreciate the fact that it was well taken care of.  Who wants to buy a house that is unkept, unless you want a project.  I'm not looking for a project when the houses I'm looking at are my top dollar purchasing price.
Needless to say, house shopping was a bust.
I'm reconsidering renting over buying.  I looked at several rental houses but most were way out of my price range.  None of them seemed right anyway.  I had no feelings about them...I just felt nothing about them.  Then I saw an adorable rental I'm hoping the owners will consider me for.  There would be things to work out, but I can see me in that house.  I could see me making a home there.  It's an older house, in the country, with a front porch, a tin roof (I can hear the rain falling) and big oak trees.  It's got big windows and the owner said there is always a breeze blowing through there.  It has a beautiful view.  I always loved living in the country.  In my life, I've done so three to four times.  It's so peaceful and quiet.  This house has been taken down to the studs and redone.  If I had done it myself I might have done a few things different, however, what they did do was great.  I can see my old family furniture and my "treasure hunting finds" inside this house.  I can see my ivy baskets hanging from the porch, my urns with geraniums or jew leading up the steps and pretty things in the flower beds.  I can see the two white rockers I have that rocked on our old front porch for who knows how many years, rocking here on this porch.  I can see my grandson playing in the yard and a swing hanging from the tree.  So time will tell.  We'll see if they call.  If they don't, I'll keep looking.

So my prayers to God, about the when and the where He is paving the way for me to go, continue.  I pray He keeps my eyes and ears open and clear.  I hope He speaks loud and that His path is lined with yellow bricks so I'll know which way to follow.

Encourage One Another