Wednesday, November 15, 2017

"I'll have the Hodgepodge with a side of Tennessee"

Here it is Wednesday again and y'all know what that means...'s Hodgepodge day!
Last week at this time I was getting my teacup exchange reveal post put together
and missed out on linking up to the hodgepodge.
I'm doing good to get one post out a week but it did feel kind of like something was missing!
I was also getting everything packed up for a little trip to see our Tennessee bunch.
We got on the road at o-dark-thirty on Thursday morning and arrived at our destination
by about 1:00 PM, Tennessee time.
It's always nice to gain that hour on our way but not so much for on the way back.
But, eight hours is eight hours, no matter how you slice it, right?
There was still a lot of beautiful color hanging on those Tennessee trees.
I don't know how many times I have shared photos of their beautiful long driveway,

but here it is again...

and again...

...and once more, just for good measure.
If you turn right at the fence post and go down few hundred yards,
our future driveway will be on your left.
And seeing the well with my very own eyes made it all a bit more real.

Here are a just a few of our future neighbors.
One morning as I was walking down the drive which overlooks the petting zoo, 
I aimed my camera to get a shot and then someone yelled "COME AND GET IT!"
...and they did.
But I guess I should really be getting on with the matter at hand...

She asks us the questions and we answer them on our blogs.
Here are this week's questions...

1. What takes you out of your comfort zone?
Speaking in front of a group of people...and I think I've mentioned this before. Give me song and I'll sing it but please don't ask me to speak!
2. Your least favorite spice?
Sometimes it's not the spice itself, but the amount of it. I am not a fan of too much sage, especially in fact, I don't use it at all when I make it.. Another least favorite would be anise because it reminds me of licorice and even though I know it's actually an herb and not a spice, a little bit of cilantro goes a long, long way.

3. What's a small change you'd like to make?

Just one?? Being able to give up bread....or sugar...or both!

4. Do you enjoy visiting historic homes? If so, of the homes you've visited which one was your favorite? What historic home near you is open to visitors? Have you been? Southern Living rounded up eleven of the best in the southern part of the US and they're as follows-

Monticello (Jefferson's home in Virginia), Nathaniel Russel House (Charleston SC), Swan House (Atlanta), Ernest Hemingway's home (Key West), The Biltmore (Vanderbilt home in Asheville NC), Mount Vernon (Washington's home in Virgina), San Francisco Plantation (Garyville, Louisiana), Windsor Ruins (Port Gibson Mississippi), Longue Vue House and Gardens (New Orleans), Whitehall (Palm Beach FL), and Pebble Hill Plantation (Thomasville GA)

Have you been to any on the list? Of the homes listed which would you most like to visit?

I do enjoy visiting historic homes. The first one that I remember visiting was The House of the Seven Gables in Salem, Massachusetts years ago when Jim and I were first married. I was amazed by how low the ceilings were and the doorways were tiny. People must have been quite small back in the 1600's. From the ones listed above, I have been to Mount Vernon and you'd think a girl who has been in NC for 25 years would have surely been to the Biltmore, wouldn't you? Well, if I have the opportunity before I leave this state, I certainly hope to be able to make it there.

5. What's something you think will be obsolete in ten years? Does that make you sad or glad?

Technology has already pretty much taken over the world and it actually scares me a little to think about what it will be like in ten years. Now here I sit, typing on a computer with my iPhone at my side as I write these words. I like my technology just as much as the next person, to an extent. I realize this seems a bit like a contradiction but I am not ready for a world where technology takes the place of human beings...over our brains (or human thoughts) when they are no longer required for us to go about our everyday lives. It saddens me to say that I'm afraid many things that we take for granted in our current day and time will be obsolete...many of them already are...and nothing about this makes me glad. Anyone got a time machine they aren't using??

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

So much to do, so little time. How is it possible that Thanksgiving is only a little over a week away? I have no turkey, I have no bread for stuffing, I have nothing that I need to make a feast. It looks like it's going to be a busy weekend!

 If you can stand it, (and even if you can't) here are a few more photos from our trip.

That gorgeous view from the back deck...

Olivia and her friend, Shiloh...

Parker, whittlin' on the back porch...

fuzzy things...
and oh yeah...did I happen to mention that view?
So now, if you're still with me, have a fabulous remainder of the week!

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Teacup & Mug Exchange Reveal

It's that time again...
...time for us to reveal all of our lovelies from...

Stephanie's Fall Teacup & Mug Exchange

This makes the fifth exchange that I have had the joy of participating in.
Each time I have eagerly awaited for Stephanie's email to arrive
 with the name of the lady that I was to send my package to.
I immediately click on their blog and do some snooping familiarize myself a little with who they are.

I was delighted to find out that I was to send my package to Dee at Traditional Simplicity.
I was unfamiliar with Dee but found out she has been blogging since 2006!
Wow...I don't even think I knew what a blog was back then!
It was fun getting to know a little about her on the sly and shopping for her teacup and other goodies.
This is what was in the box of goodies that I sent to Dee.

She favors soft pastel colors so I found this lovely teacup set with matching spoon...

...pretty tea party napkins and plates, a variety of gluten-free yummies, a 2018 datebook,
a couple of vintage doilies, some of her favorite mint teas
and a darling set of Pioneer Woman love bird salt & pepper shakers.

Now, on the other hand, I found out who was sending a package to me right away.
She even sent me an email, introducing herself and telling me to be expecting my surprise any day!
That delightful lady was none other than the sweet Lauren at Wonderfully Made.
Let me tell you, everything contained in my box of goodies had her special and unique flair,
with so many personal touches, right down to the packaging.
 I had to take photos during each step of the "unveiling" since it was so beautifully done!

There were three separate boxes inside the big box plus a darling hand made card...

...and this beautiful bookmark, also hand made.

What a treat it was to open each box, finding such lovely and unique items inside.

This box contained a wonderful array of loose teas.
 Printed on a label inside of the box lid was a description of each one...
including the ingredients, how long to steep them, and even the caffeine content!
Then there was this cutest bundle of...well...sticks of some kind and after I opened the plastic,
I still wasn't sure what they were but I had an idea...

...and that's when I got the brilliant idea to send Lauren an email and just flat out ask her!
We had a little chuckle over me not knowing and her forgetting to mention what they were.
I have to admit that I am still somewhat of a novice when it comes to tea-drinking.
Most of you probably know that they are straws filled with different flavored honey.
You just snip off the end and squeeze it into the tea.
I can't wait to try them!

On opening box #2, I found this beautiful silver spoon adorned with a vintage chandelier crystal...

...a lovely vintage linen hand towel
and a package of decadent buckeye chocolates.

These candies are also a favorite of Jim's and he didn't hesitate one little bit when I offered!

Being from Ohio with the buckeye as the state tree and the Ohio State Buckeyes a favorite team,

our families have made these yummy peanut butter-filled chocolates often.
In fact, every year at Christmastime, they were on Jim's wish list.

Talk about delicious!
So when I finally got to the last box, I unwrapped this exquisite and most elegant teacup.

I just love the soft pink roses, the gold edging and it's beautiful shape.

I feel so blessed to have received this delightful package.
Lauren most definitely is one talented lady...just look at her beautiful blog!

And what a precious heart for the Lord she has which is quite evident.
She and I have become Facebook friends as well.

But of course, none of this would be possible if it were not for our dear Stephanie.
It has to be a full time job for her with all that she puts into these exchanges.
Thank you once again, dear Stephanie for all you do to make these exchanges possible!

You are precious blessing from the Lord, my dear.

We will be traveling on Thursday to celebrate an early Thanksgiving with our Tennessee bunch.
I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!

Until next time....

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Falling Back on the Hodgepodge

Happy first day of November!

Daylight Savings Time ends this weekend and I always look forward to it...
...I know, most people think I'm nuts (and they just may be right).

When I leave to go home from work it's nearly dark
and when I go to work in the morning, the sun is blinding me!
So why do I like it?
First of all, I really like having that extra hour on Saturday evening.
We turn our clocks back after supper and it's just enough to trick my mind into thinking
that I am actually gaining an hour...I never use it for sleeping purposes.
You see, I seem to have this built-in alarm that doesn't allow me to slumber more,
just because the clock says I can.
Most weekday evenings I'm just ready to get home and stay there.
The thought of coming home, gettin' in my jammies and all cozied in on a cold evening
is just one of those simple pleasure I enjoy this time of year!

So let's get on with the Hodgepodge, shall we?

It's where Joyce asks the tough questions and we answer them on our blogs.
But you already knew that, didn't you?

1. What does/did Halloween look like at your house this year? Did you decorate? Pick pumpkins? Carve pumpkins? Expect trick or treaters? Wear a costume to a party or event? Make a costume? Feel glad you didn't have to come up with a costume? Cook a Halloween themed treat? Eat all the leftover candy?

It's actually Halloween night as I sit here writing this post and this is what it looks like: The house is quiet, Oscar is lying next to me on the couch while Tasha is asleep on the love seat. Jim is working (as usual), I didn't carve a pumpkin this year and we have had zero trick-or-treaters so far. I bought a bag of Reese's Cups just in case. Each year the number goes if last year was zero, we will have less than that this year. I do not decorate for Halloween and haven't since my kids were little. I will occasionally dress up (a little) but nothing too garish.

This was shortly after Jim and I were married at a party we attended. I'm the one in the deputy's case you didn't recognize me.

And this was last year at the PT clinic, shortly before election day. I was "Ms. Patriotic" and the bright blue eye shadow is about as scary as it gets! I remember how much more fun Halloween used to be when I was a kid...we usually made our costumes from some old clothes and anything we could find but I do remember when I had a Casper the Friendly Ghost costume...oh yeah, and Heckle and Jeckle, remember them? Actually, I dress my dogs up more than I dress up myself.

This year. no costume for me and no Halloween treats were made and few were eaten. They came passing out candy at work today and after eating a few pieces, I felt sick. I can't eat too much sugar these days and that's a GOOD thing!

2. What are you waiting for? Elaborate

I guess I could say that I am waiting on many things but as the world grows more and more chaotic, I find myself wondering and waiting for everything to settle down a bit. I don't have a lot of confidence that it will happen but we can still hope and pray. I'm afraid I might be waiting until Jesus returns.

3. Do you wish you were friendlier, braver, more creative, more athletic, or something else? Explain.

Sometimes, yes to all of the above but I don't spend a lot of time dwelling on it. There is always room for improvement and the "something else" would most definitely be SKINNIER...and that, my friends, needs NO explanation. 😕

4. When it comes time to paint are you a do-it-yourselfer or do you hire someone? What was the last paint job completed at your house? What room most needs painting now? How do you feel about wallpaper?

I have always been a do-it-yourselfer. The last paint project that I completely finished would be my kitchen cabinets. Here is a photo from my post about it.

I was going to paint the hallway BEFORE we got the new floors last winter but one thing led to another and I knew there would be more painting to be done later so I just stopped. You see, I need a deadline and now I have one...well, kinda. By putting the house on the market hopefully in the spring, all of my unfinished projects shall finally be complete. So after the hallway is finally finished, I will start painting all of the doors and baseboards. And anyone who knows me at all knows that I still love my wallpaper...not everywhere...just here and in the bathroom...

...the bedroom

...and inside of my hutches...

...and of course, my back splash in the kitchen which is textured wallpaper spray painted "tin".

5. What is one specific thing you felt gratitude for in the month of October?

I specifically am very thankful for the cooler temps that October brought (finally!) and as of the end of last week, water in the well in Tennessee! You just can't move forward without it.

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

It is now 9:00 PM on Halloween. Not. One. Trick-or-treater. It looks like I'll be needing to get rid if that bag of Reese's Cups. Any takers??

Enjoy the rest of your week!
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