Tuesday, August 28, 2007
In the valley of the shadow of
grad school.
Yes, we are lingering there tonight. . .
The travels have brought us to it.
This next year is going to be a "killer," but there is a beautiful light at the end! Troy has several big things like a grad recital and opera not to mention life, studies and teaching in general. The boys have greatly enjoyed all the "Daddy Moments" they had this summer.

Heading off to swim at the university's pool.

Daddy and Ethan ready for a Father/Son night out together.

Helping Daddy with yard work.

"Just plain playing."

(I was amused with this idea the boys had - they incorporated all of their dinosaurs with the train set. It must be where Jurassic Park met the Island of Sodor. :-)
Yes, we'll miss the extra time, but, as I said, there is a beautiful light that we can see.

  posted at 11:15 PM  

54 lights
54 whopping lights! (Maybe 55. It actually is a bit complicated to count traffic lights as you are driving, trying to pay attention to the road and be a mother at the same time.)
And now you are curious as to when I encounter them??? Our drive to church. Yup! All 54 of them - no "ifs," "ands" or driving around them! (Take that back. Sometimes I cut off one of them at the corner of 29 and 14. Never mind what I said in the previous post about being a law abiding citizen! I'd rather be at church on time! Besides, I have to do that to get around all the people who are not turning right and should be sitting in the other lane, but that is another post! :-)
Back to the lights. . .The actual drive is between 27-28 miles which isn't bad - until you take the lights into consideration. Did I mention all 54 of them?! Sigh. . .Not a good prospect when you are pregnant and prone to car sickness! I have sometimes left for church an hour early and still pulled in late due to red lights!
Now I will leave the subject of other drivers alone. . . You know how they seem to be lurking in every lane and driving miles under the speed limit! Grrrrr. Sometimes I arrive at church feeling like I need to have a personal prayer meeting to rid the frustration of the drive. And those lights!!!! Did I mention there are 54 of them?! :-)
I told Troy I am making up for all the years my dad was a pastor, and I lived 30 seconds from the church.
So, how long is your drive?

  posted at 10:47 AM  

Monday, August 27, 2007
In Defense of Myself

Meanwhile back at the barnyard. . . oops, I mean, subdivision, I think I need to make something perfectly clear - - -
I do not dislike roosters. I appreciate the wonderful contributions they have made to the world in general and to my culinary habits in particular. :-)
There is just a - - -

certain rooster (Ahem)

whom I would rather not know exists. The reasons for this are:

1. He makes an unfathomable amount of noise in this neighborhood - enough noise that the houses across the street do not appreciate his presence. I try to respect my neighbors by not doing offensive things or producing obnoxious noises. Not so with the rooster owners, but I will not go into details!

2. As far as I know, it is unlawful for this rooster to be living where it is, and I do believe we should be law-abiding citizens. Were I living in the country, I would have no excuse to complain about the nuisance.

So, never fear, dear readers, I am not trying to eliminate the population of roosters.

I rest my case. :-)

  posted at 2:33 PM  

Thursday, August 23, 2007
And lo, he trespasseth,
and may soon meet his demise. For it is ungodly that roosters leave their original city of refuge and seek solace under a neighbor's tree - especially neighbors that are lethal with garden hoses. For also in that yard an enemy lurketh and lieth in wait for its prey. (Taken from the Proverbs of Martha Chapter 4).
The enemy being none other than. . .
Specky - the other neighbor's cat. The "he" that "trespasseth" is none other than Mr. Rooster Dude! Yes, Troy found him "loose" and strutting by our tree. Unfortunately he saw Specky first as she was slinking across the street. He was shooing her away before he saw the rooster. Bummer!!!!! That could have been a sight to see. I think that even I would have run outside in my pj's just so I could be a spectator at the Rooster Rodeo.
In the end, she did not get the rooster. . . Sigh. . . That rooster is so annoying.

  posted at 11:53 AM  

Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Dixie Chain Saw Gang
Imagine this ~ ~ The Castle family is officially on their way to a Georgia vacation. They are breezing their way through the beautiful countryside when "out of the blue" a man is trying to flag them down. My first reaction was, "He is sitting in a running vehicle, and I do not want to stop out here in the middle of the nowhere to find out what a complete stranger wants." It wasn't my goal to become a Reader's Digest story that evening!
In case he was legit, we slowed our pace and heightened our senses a bit, and it wasn't long before ~ ~ we had the privilege of stopping behind a line of red tail lights. Bummer! Come on, People! Don't you know we are on vacation and don't want to find our lodging in the dark?! Hmmm. What is the hangup?! A wreck? Bridge out? Snake crossing the highway?
None of the above. It was a good old tree that had just taken a tumble right across the road. Come on, Tree! Couldn't you have fallen the other way?!
So, what do you do in the boonies when this happens? #1 There is no signal, so cell phones are a joke! #2 Wait for the Dept of Transportation to remove it? Ummmm. No, thanks. (That could take a year.)

Thankfully Charlie the Chain Saw Carrier came to the rescue! It was hilarious, but it is what I love about rural America. It is where everyone is your friend and neighbor, and some people carry chain saws in their vehicles. :-) I am pretty useless I guess. If you were in a pinch I might be able to give you a lawn chair, a few napkins from the glove compartment and maybe a salt packet or two. I don't even have a flashlight in my vehicle, let alone a chain saw! In no time it was out of the way, and life went on as planned. Georgie, here we come. Thanks, Charlie. It is people like you that keep America running!

  posted at 10:11 PM  

Friday, August 17, 2007
I probably shouldn't have,
but I did!
It was too big of a temptation. . .
And now you wish to know the deed? :-)
Well, it wasn't the kindest thing I have ever done (or the meanest), and Troy said it might even be against the law. (Nervous chuckle inserted here.) It all happened when (Cough. Cough.) "Mr Rooster Dude" came waltzing around the side of "his" house, and I, armed with a garden hose, was within twenty feet of him. (Throat clearing inserted here.)
You guessed it - I was getting even for the days when he crows once a minute for ungodly periods of time. I (Ahem) do not think the neighbors noticed. (I was hoping they were too busy unloading the trunk of their new car.) This was a "once in a Southern lifetime" happening that I could not pass, and I gave in. . . Sigh. . . I suppose I should be ashamed, but, alas, there is no shame. Just a wonderfully funny mental picture of seeing how fast a rooster can actually run when squirted with a hose! :-) (Snickering at the keyboard.)

  posted at 11:04 PM  

Wednesday, August 15, 2007
Reluctlantly coming back down ~
from this secluded spot in the mountains of Georgia.
It was delightful to be tucked away from the world
and spend days getting refreshed!
Could anyone ever tire of such a view?!

And who couldn't relax with a bed such as this

and a morning devotional spot like this?!

Being with some of the people you love the most,
spending hours of uninterrupted family time,
surrounded by God's fingertips. . .
Time almost stops,
and one can begin to wonder
if there is any evil in the world!

And then we had to come home, and reality struck the moment I walked through my front door. Sigh. . .I am ready to go back!

  posted at 9:14 AM  

Friday, August 10, 2007
Remedies you'll need!

My brother-in-law, Tracy, sent these brilliant home remedies, and I just had to pass on the wisdom! :-)

When choking on an ice cube, simply pour a cup of boiling water down your throat. Presto! The blockage will remove itself instantly.

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold as you chop.

A mouse trap placed on the top of your alarm clock will prevent you from hitting the snooze button and falling back to sleep.

You only need two things in life - WD 40 and duct tape. If it doesn't move and should, use WD 40. If it does move and shouldn't, use duct tape.

  posted at 10:27 AM  

Wednesday, August 08, 2007
Cyber Awards Night
"Ahem." (Throat clearing time.) "Ladies and gentlemen, it is with sincere gratitude and a queasy stomach that I wish to thank each of you for attending the Nausea Awareness Awards Night. All of you have made a big contribution to me during the last few months of my life, and I appreciate this. To those of you receiving an award, please come to the platform and accept this fine container of goop and bouquet of dead flowers. May you always keep them as a reminder of the misery with which you helped me overcome."
"The first person to be honored this evening is none other than my wonderful husband, Troy." (Clapping, clapping) "His biggest reward tonight is a rather un-nauseated wife!
Thank you, Troy, for always being so understanding and never expecting anything but whining from me during the first twenty weeks of this pregnancy. You were so caring and willing to pick up more of my load. I do not recall you complaining about this new dilemma that was thrown at you."
"You never griped when the kitchen looked like this, and you had to get a search and rescue team to find clean items."
"You never moaned when the laundry room resembled a rummage sale. You willingly dug through the piles to find your clean clothes.

Thanks for making my sneezausea easier to handle."

"The evening wouldn't be complete without mentioning two special boys who suddenly lost their fun-loving, energetic, hard working mama to some gal who spent most of her time in a horizontal position moaning about her belly and head.

The younger was. . .pretty good, although he took advantage of the situation at times. He regained his good standing by putting on puppet shows and other forms of entertainment for his mommy. (The shows were usually in 'French' and had to be interpreted.) Ethan was very sweet about telling me that he was sorry I was sick.

I couldn't have asked for a better seven year old! He jumped right "up to the plate" and tirelessly helped with chores and watched his little brother. Yes, he was so watchful he would even report each time Ethan burped with his mouth open! :-) Seth would watch Ethan in the morning so I could sleep in, make breakfast for both of them, take care of snacks, keep Ethan entertained and help with lots of household chores! I never worried about Ethan with a good big brother like Seth. You are awesome, Buddy." "My dear friend and neighbor, Kim. Where do I start? Having been through some very rough pregnancies herself, Kim was a wonderful ear in which to whine. She understood every bout of nausea! She also offered babysitting services and brought me food on occasion. Thanks, Kim, you are a godsend."
"And we must mention Angie! Doesn't she just look like a fun person?! Being a nurse, she was very faithful with the 'Have you found a doctor question?.' Angie was also thoughtful with phone calls to check and see how I was faring. What a sweet gal. I will always be indebted to the one who introduced me to true nausea medicine that actually works! Thanks for everything, Angie."
"Last of all I would like to mention my dear Mother who due to distance could not be here tonight. She endured every anti-nausea rant I had to spout, the numerous "why do I have to be nauseated?' lines, the tears, the frustrations, the helplessness. . . She is a patient woman. "

"To my cyber friends and family who visited 'the castle' - thanks for all the kind words and prayers. Your comments always helped to cheer me and were a bright spot in a very nauseated world."

"Thank you again for attending! I appreciate your time. Help yourselves to the refreshments provided in the back. Since my appetite is at stake, I chose the menu. Please enjoy the peanut butter crackers, dill pickles, cookie dough, cheese slices and strawberries. Have a pleasant night!"

  posted at 10:55 PM  

Tuesday, August 07, 2007
The sum
plus this
and this
even this
and can't forget this ~
equals lots of fun!

  posted at 10:18 PM  

Monday, August 06, 2007
A "Fishy" Tale
Our blue fish, named "Red" by Seth, has taken her last swim. She had been "sick" for weeks. At least I guess she was "sick." Red wouldn't eat for months, and one day I do believe I saw her have a nervous breakdown. (If fish have such things.) No kidding! :-) I strolled into the room where her bowl was located and found a very interesting sight! She was tearing around the water in break neck speed circles, and half of her body (the top half) was out of the water! Rather. . .intriguing. I was wishing I had my camera but couldn't tear my eyes away long enough to run for the equipment.
Red was never the same after that, but we did not have the heart to "dispose" of her. After all, she has been with us at least four years. A good many of my blogger friends have also taken a turn keeping her. Can't even remember all the ones who "fish sat" for us ~ Charlotte F, Julie A, Nancy L, and I think Marianne B had her once.
I hope I am not considered heartless after not attending her "flushing" ceremony. I let the men in this house take care of that job.

  posted at 9:32 AM  

Friday, August 03, 2007
As I type, he crows!
Before you judge the harshness of my words, let me explain. . . I am not speaking of anyone in this household! It is with "loving" reference to "Mr. Rooster Dude" (as I call him) that lives next door.
Yes, you read that correctly. He lives next door.
Let me give you a little background ~
Here is the view that will greet you as you step out our front door.
And the back. Lovely view of the distant trees. A wonderful spot to sit and enjoy morning devotions. (As he crows, of course!)
Even the side view can be nice. It's just the other side of the fence where the grass is not greener! It is where
Mr. Rooster Dude lives! Now maybe you like the sound of them, but I do not - especially in a subdivision. Months back these folks actually had an entire flock of hens until someone other than us got tired of the noise. Let me tell you, there's nothing like feeling your neighbors have a 4H Fair going on in their backyard! It became wonderfully quiet when the fowl were hauled to another destination!
Alas, they have been replaced with Mr. Rooster Dude!! Now, having never grown up on a farm I am a bit lacking in rooster knowledge. Am I the only one that thought these creatures only crowed in the morning? You know, the good old wake up,"Cock a doodle doo!?" Well, this one doesn't quit there!! He has a snooze button that causes him to repeat that call every eight minutes or so. Grrr. He also has a leash so he can strut around that yard in all of his splendor and glory.
Thankfully we sleep with noisemakers, or his disappearance would be sooner. I have also blasted Bach and Beethoven a few times just so we would have enjoyable background noise.
My last hope is that he is gone before we try to get rid of this house. I am not sure that Mr. Rooster Dude would be a great selling point with potential buyers.
(Pardon the grainy photo of the bird. I had the camera at zoom max and was trying to nonchalantly snap the picture so the neighbors would not know I was doing it! :-)

  posted at 8:56 PM  

Wednesday, August 01, 2007
Caution: Brain cells at work
The day has arrived! August 1, 2007 marked the beginning of another school year for us. Seth has entered the Second Grade, and Ethan is doing a bit of Preschool work. It seems early, but Seth ended school around May 4th. I told him that I wanted to get many days accomplished before the baby was born. He was so excited to start!

My little scholars studying away. . . I love watching them work and learn! These are some of those moments I will always treasure.
Poor Ethan. . . He seemed a bit lost when he was finished and suddenly had to entertain himself without his brother. Those two usually play for hours together, so it will be an adjustment for him.

  posted at 11:56 AM  

queen of the castle

Martha C

To all my family and friends, this blog was commenced as a way to keep you informed during my frequent communication lapses. Enjoy reading of our life in this far, far away land called "the South."

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