"Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed."

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Sleet Days

We had some snow/sleet recently.  Actually one of our local meteorologists said, "In this recent storm, we saw about 2.5" of solid sleet accumulate in the Triad. If that were all snow, it would have been about 8.5"."  And it was pretty solid because I tried putting my fingers through it to see how much we got.  After the first dusty layer, it was so very hard.  I couldn't break it.   Anyway, we played with the kids some of the time.  I'll just post some pictures from a few different days.

But first, Andrew's bucket man. He says it helps add weight to the back of his truck.  Plus, it's cute. He used old gloves and old boots.  He removed the hat before driving.

Sophie found her bubble wand, and she would dip it in the sleet and eat it.

Zach tried to find deep enough snow to make an angel.

He had a snowball fight with Poppy and Tucky.

At our house, Zach slid down the front steps.  I posted a video on Facebook of this.  He didn't even need a sled or trash can lid! 

First he had to get dressed

He also had a snowball fight with the tree.

It's too bright

And then he rested.

Andrew's dad gathered a pile of snow for Zach.  We named it Mashed Potato Mountain.

Zach liked sliding down it, and also crashing off the side.

He wanted an igloo, and asked if he could help.

I took a picture of the sky while they worked on the igloo.

Andrew decided Zach could help by going inside to see if it needed more shoveling.  Zach thought it would be like an igloo he saw on Curious George.  He said it needed an air hole, and to be higher so he could walk around in it and play.

Later we decided to walk to the park. Well, Zach rode in the wagon...

We played awhile there.

That night we had a beautiful sunset.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Kay Sisters

I've shared photos of my grandmother before, but I never had one of her with her sisters.  One of Mema's sisters has been put on morphine and oxygen. She was ninety last July 4th so she is plenty ready to be reunited with her loved ones.  I would love to see the heavenly reunion when Edith sees her sisters, and mama, and beloved husband (and others of course...best of all Jesus!). 

One of my mom's cousins posted this on Facebook so I saved it, and wanted to post it here.

Friday, January 8, 2016

2015 Meme

1. What did you do in 2015 that you’d never done before?

hiked several new places (Max Patch, Roan Mountain, Sharp Top Mountain, McAfee Knob, Buffalo Mountain, etc.)
saw bears while driving on the Blue Ridge Parkway
visited the local Catholic church
saw an LDS baptism
visited Tybee Island
marched in Burlington's costume parade with Zach on the day before Halloween

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I didn't make any, but I did make one this year (see previous post)

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

4. Did anyone close to you die?


5. What countries did you visit?

6. What would you like to have in 2016 that you lacked in 2015?

Maybe visit a different state

7. What date from 2015 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

August 10; reasons I won't rehash since my goal this year is to not hold onto bitterness  :)

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

our hike at McAfee Knob

9. What was your biggest failure?


10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

I got the family sickness once again, but it was during the summer instead of near Christmas. 

11. What was the best thing you bought?


12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

Andrew's - he's most always a cheerful, helpful guy

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

mine at times; others at times

14. Where did most of your money go?

health insurance

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

traveling (except remember that I never get "really, really, really" excited about stuff)

16. What song(s) will always remind you of 2015?

The Old Rugged Cross, maybe

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:

i. Happier or sadder?

about the same

iii. Thinner of fatter?

probably fatter

v. richer or poorer?

about the same

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?


19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
staying home

20. How will you be spending Christmas?

It was very similar to last year except only Zach, Sophie, and Lorraine were missing*. Also, we didn't go see the lights on Marye Drive (several of us had gone before Christmas this year; some of us more than once) or go to Walgreens.  It was very mild after days of mild temperatures and rain, rain rain.  A few of us (me, Steph, Michael, Mama, Megan, Daniel) did slosh across Stephanie's yard and walked to Sheetz for free hot chocolate or coffee.  We made sure to see the full moon since it was the first full moon on Christmas in several years (like the last one was in the late 1970s or something like that.)  Thankfully it wasn't a rainy or cloudy evening so we actually saw it! 
We watched News 2's Christmas special with two Andy Griffith episodes: the one where they have Christmas at the courthouse/jail, and the kerosene cucumber one (when Aunt Bee makes pickles). 
Earlier in the day Andrew and I ate at his parents' house with his brother and his wife.
Andrew and I made plans to go to the beach the next day, and I made reservations the day before so we finished packing for our trip, too.

* We had our family meal/gift exchange the Saturday before Christmas since some folks would be out of town on the 25th.

21. deleted question

22. What was your favorite TV program?

NCIS or NCIS: LA  -- and I learned the other day that DiNozzo is not coming back to NCIS next season: booooo!

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

24. What was the best book you read?

This is always a tough one for me because how can I pick the best out of dozens of books?  Among my favorites were the memoir from Regina Calcaterra (what a horrible childhood!), and the Fairlawn funeral home series (seems weird, but I liked that trilogy - kind of easy reading, but also meaningful to me for some reason)

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?

I don't know, but I really enjoyed the free outdoor concerts in the area during the warmer months

26. What did you want and get?

a small table to put beside the couch; Andrew bought the one I showed him while we were walking near The Main Line in downtown Graham

27. What was your favorite film of this year?
  The Book Thief -- I think that was my only movie.

28. What did you do on your birthday?

watched Zach and Sophie some; went by to see Michael for my yearly birthday picture with him

29. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2015?

practical, comfortable

30. What kept you sane?
several short trips just to get away and enjoy nature; walking, walking, walking

31. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

*drawing a blank*

32. What political issue stirred you the most?


33. Who did you miss?  

Pop, Mema

34. Who was the best new person you met?

Karen Heiss in late July

35. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2015.

I am so thankful for books to keep me company because people just aren't always around - and really, I don't want them to be since I like being alone more than a lot of people do.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

'Twas December

We had a great December for the most part.  Weather-wise it was weird - much warmer, quite a bit of rain some days/weeks, but, thankfully, several nice, sunny days and evenings! 

I could highlight several other things from this month, but I focused more on Christmas stuff.

First we went to see the lighted Christmas trees which Zach grew to really enjoy once he figured out how those trees could sing, blink their eyes, and such. 

Andrew and I were tickled when he asked us "which one is the girl?" because a few solo parts were definitely sung by a feminine voice.  Here is a minute of Zach's favorite part of the Hallelujah song.  He especially likes the "lu!" part towards the end. 

We also took him to visit this light display in another part of Graham.

We stopped by the lighted Christmas tree on the municipal building's lawn.

Zach posed for a few pictures, but then he was ready to play tag!

I noticed these blooms while we were there.

One evening we went up to see the synthetic ice-skating rink which was in town for about three weeks.

Since some of the family travels for Christmas day to see the other sides of the families, we celebrated with everyone who could make it on the Saturday before Christmas (the 19th).

Here are a few pictures from that day:

The ones of us in town on the 25th met for supper and to hang out for a while.  News 2 aired an Andy Griffith Christmas special which we enjoyed.

One episode made a few folks crave pickles.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

50 Questions

I found this on Niki's blog, and did it because I'm a sucker for these things.  :)

1. What time did you get up this morning?
7:08 or thereabouts

2. How do you like your steak?

I'm not much of a steak fan. I like it pan-fried and thin.

3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema?

Spiderman or The Passion of the Christ ?? -- it's been a while

4. What is your favorite TV show?

5. If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?


6. What did you have for breakfast?
Aldi brand of frosted wheat squares

7. What is your favorite cuisine?
homey, southern stuff

8. What foods do you dislike?

radishes, sour German salads

9. Favorite Place to Eat?


10. Favorite dressing?


11.What kind of vehicle do you drive?
2001 Honda Accord

12. What are your favorite clothes?

my comfy ones

13. Where would you visit if you had the chance?

Europe; other places in the US

14. Cup 1/2 empty or 1/2 full?

both at times

15. Where would you want to retire?

Southport, Myrtle Beach, or the mountains, or ...

16. Favorite time of day?

mid morning

17. Where were you born?

Greenville, SC

18. What is your favorite sport to watch?

used to be college basketball, but I don't watch much any more

19. How many siblings?


20.Favorite pastime/hobby:

reading, walking

21. Who are you most curious about their responses to this?

I did it, Niki! :)  anyone

22. Bird watcher?


23. Are you a morning person or a night person?


24. Do you have any pets?


25. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share?


26. What did you want to be when you were little?


27. What is your best childhood memory?

playing with my cousins

28. Are you a cat or dog person?


29. Are you married?


30. Always wear your seat belt?


31. Been in a car accident?


32. Any pet peeves?

crooked blinds and rugs

33. Favorite Pizza Toppings?

onions, cheese, sometimes tomatoes or pineapple

34. Favorite Flower?

I love most of them

35. Favorite ice cream?

this summer I ate some good Hershey's chocolate that hit the spot after we hiked McAfee Knob, but I like various kinds; Breyer's mint chocolate chip is good

36. Favorite fast food restaurant?
Hmmm, Wendy's, I guess. No real favorite.

37. How many times did you fail your driver's test?


38. From whom did you get your last email?

my mom

39. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card?

we don't max our credit cards in this house; I can't think of anything I want that much

40. Do anything spontaneous lately?

41. Like your job?


42. Broccoli?


43. What was your favorite vacation?


44. Last person you went out to dinner with?


45. What are you listening to right now?

Andrew yawning behind me

46. What is your favorite color?

blue and red

47. How many tattoos do you have?


48. How many people will fill this out?

beats me

49. What time did you finish this quiz?
7:03 PM

50. Coffee Drinker?


Friday, January 1, 2016

New Year's Resolution

I think I want to make this my resolution for 2016...

Ephesians 4

29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.  (NIV)

or if you prefer the King James Version (the version I grew up with, and used for scripture memorization): 

29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.

30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.

31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:

32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.   (emphasis mine)


Beautiful words, really.