Saturday, December 30, 2017

December Recap - Part 2

On my last recap post I stopped when I headed home from the Lakeland after a fun fill week of Christmas programs of both the girls

Adalyn's birthday party and day with her Aunt Tul



Wednesday, I drove home - unpacked, shared all the stuff I bought, and did laundry.  Thursday we headed up to Valdosta to pick up things for the Open House that we were having on Tuesday. 

Saturday I started preparing things that could be frozen or that would keep until Tuesday.  I also cleaned the house and porch and did another load of laundry.

Sunday was church and the Christmas Cantata.  It was an excellent production that we enjoyed very much.  Then we went over to the Dining Room for lunch, came home and watched some football as I tried to plan the rest of the week.

Monday was crunch time for the party - I spent most of the day in the kitchen making ,at of the homemade items that we served.  But we did make a quick trip into town to Publix for all the last minute things that I needed.

Tuesday was a very busy day - cooking, cleaning, getting ready, putting the finishing touches on the decorations all before people arrived early.  I didn't get the first picture of the party, but that's okay.  We had a wonderful time and I think all our guests had a wonderful time.  I was pleasantly surprised that a lot of the food was eaten so we didn't have a ton of left overs.  What was left Dan put on a couple of trays and took to the Maintenance Crew on Wednesday while I worked my shift at the store.

Thursday was doing some last minute straightening up and laundry before getting ready to head back to Lakeland.  

Friday was the President's Reception here.  It is a very nice affair with plenty of snacks and goodies for everyone.  The entire Village is invited - so there is quite a  crowd there.

Saturday Dan and I took it easy and watched football most of the day. Saturday evening we went down to our friends house for hot dogs on the fire pit and some time with their nephew's family visiting from Washington.  There were lots of laughs and some crazy antics but a good time was had by all.


  Then Sunday morning we were up fairly early, packed the suitcase, loaded all the gifts in the back of my car (along with the bar stools we were giving my daughter), grabbed Jessie and headed to Lakeland.  We were not in a hurry and decided to take the back roads to avoid all the traffic we figured would be on the Interstate.  

We arrived at Melissa's house around 2:30 - in time to help get the girls ready for Church at 4:00 after unloading all the gifts and putting them in Melissa and Justin's room.  Then Crystal, Emily and I went to Olive Garden and picked up the food Melissa had ordered.  Both sides of the family came to the house for Christmas Eve dinner - counting the kids there were 16 people there.  After dinner the girls opened their one present on Christmas Eve - which is Christmas PJ's and a Christmas movie (this year was Polar Express).  After their bath and putting their PJ's Dan and I headed down to our hotel room. 

Since Crystal and the girls dad were staying with Melissa there wasn't a place for Dan and I - so we had made reservations at the Holiday Inn Express.  We had to leave Jessie had the house with the kids because the hotel didn't accept dogs.

Sunday morning we were up early - ate a bite at the hotel then headed down to the kids.  When we arrived the babies were still asleep -


As we waited for Auntie Emmie to come the adults passed the time by drinking coffee and talking.  Finally it was time to wake the girls up and start the fun.


Lorelai sitting in her Aunt Tul's lap.



Both girls waking up.  Then they started on their stockings.  I won't bore you with the 200 plus photo's I took of the girls opening their presents - but I will show a picture of the girls in front of their haul (from their house).




After opening their presents at their house they went to Justin's parents house and had another marathon of presents.  While they were gone Dan and I went over to Dan's oldest daughter's house and had Christmas with his kids.  After visiting for a couple of hours we headed back to Melissa's and spent some time there before going back to the hotel for the night.

Tuesday morning we got the car loaded - went by Melissa's to pick up Jessie and tell everyone good-bye.  Crystal and her dad weren't leaving until Wednesday so were able to tell them bye also.  Once again we took the back roads as we figured the Interstate would be packed with travelers.  We got home with no trouble - unloaded the car, unpacked and got the laundry started.  We had stopped on the way home in Mayo and picked up a rack of ribs from Sonny C's and with some pork n' beans we had dinner.

Wednesday morning I had to work at the shop then Dan met me for lunch at the café.  My niece (my brother's oldest daughter who lives in Tallahassee) was supposed to come on Thursday to see my mom with her brother's ex-wife and the twin boys, however; Jenny called me while at work.  She was extremely upset and told me that her brother had committed suicide and they had just found him.  He lived up in Atlanta - so I have been waiting to get information of when the funeral will be.  I had to go to Mom's and tell her that Will had died (I didn't tell her that he committed suicide - I didn't figure she needed to have that as her last memory of her only grandson).  She took the news fairly well and I will let her know when the service will be held.  I don't think we will go up to Atlanta - she isn't up to a trip like that.  I guess we shall wait and see.

Yesterday we got all of Christmas taken down and MOST of it put away - there is still some things in the garage and for some reason we don't have enough crates for everything.  Don't know how that happened, but anyway, we will get it all put away sooner or later.

We are waiting now for Dan's niece from Michigan along with her husband to arrive for the night.  They will be headed down further south for the winter but wanted to stop and spend the night with us and visit.  

And that catches you all up.  Now, I still haven't shown pictures of the house decorated - so I'll close with a few pictures of the house.










Talk to you soon!

Hugs!
Carol


Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas!!!!





Dan, Jessie and I just wanted
to stop by and
wish every one
a
Very Merry Christmas!!!


Hugs!

Dan, Carol and Jessie



Friday, December 22, 2017

December Recap

December started out with Dan having a doctor's appointment here in the village - he had an excellent report on his blood work and he is doing much better since his little trip to the hospital last month.  Right after he returned home the lumber for the pergola was delivered. 

Did I tell you we sold the truck FINALLY?  No???  Well I guess it was just after Thanksgiving a man came up from outside Orlando and bought the truck - it was the same year as one his dad had had and he was really excited to get it.  In fact, he and Dan went straight into town and did all the paperwork so he had a tag and title when he left Live Oak.  Anyway, we are really glad that the truck went to someone who will "love it" the way it needs and it gave us all the money we needed to build the pergola!

Saturday I worked on finishing up the Christmas decorations and Sunday we went to church before heading over to the dining room for lunch.  I was still trying to get over the "virus" and tried to stay away from people even though I was told I wasn't contagious. 

Dan had dress rehearsal Monday and Tuesday night, but I didn't go down because we didn't think I needed to be in the cool night air.  So, I did not see any of the play this year.  

Wednesday morning I left for Lakeland - Lorelai had her first Christmas program at school on Wednesday night.  It was a really cute program and Lorelai did an awesome job.






Thursday turned cold (even cold down in Lakeland, but really cold at home and raining).  I went to a couple of stores - Kirklands, Kohl's, and Target) and picked up a few things for the house and some serving pieces for the Christmas Open House.  I talked to Dan Thursday afternoon as I received an email that the Christmas program had been cancelled for Thursday night due to the rain.  There was the Christmas Parade in Lakeland, but I just didn't feel like going - so it ended up with Justin taking the two girls and Melissa and I stayed home.

Friday I went to Hobby Lobby, but didn't find much - all their Christmas stuff had really been picked over and I really didn't find much other than some Christmas picks - so didn't spend but about $10.00.  The program at home was cancelled again due to the rain.

Friday night Crystal was flying in from Nashville for Adalyn's birthday party - she texted around 2 and said her flight was delayed by two hours - so the 9:30 PM arrival had been pushed back to 11:30.  There was supposed to be some bad weather coming in to the area Friday night - so Melissa rode with me to the airport in Tampa.  We went to the cell phone lot, so we didn't have to pay for parking and waited.  The bad weather hit right after we got into the lot and talk about rain and wind!  They closed the airport for about 1/2 an hour waiting for the front to pass.  Crystal said, after she finally landed and we picked her up, that they circled the airport for about 45 minutes waiting for the weather to clear.  Anyway, we finally got home a little after 1 in the morning, but we were all up fairly early.

Saturday was Adalyn's birthday party and Melissa had the party at Family Fun Center instead of at the house.






 After all the fun at the kids birthday party - we headed back to the house for a "family" party.  Justin's parents and sister's family came over and we had another "party".



Sunday was a quiet day with the girls playing with their Aunt Tul and with all of Addie's new toys.


Sunday night we all jumped in the car and went to Lakeland Festival of Lights at the Nazarene Church.  We went last year, but Crystal wasn't able to go.  It was fun, but Adalyn wouldn't go to any of the characters to have her picture taken nor would she sit on Santa's lap.  Lorelai loved all the different characters and wanted her picture taken with every single one.




A lot of fun, but soon it was time to head home as Lorelai had school on Monday.

Speaking of Monday - that was actually Adalyn's birthday and Crystal wanted to do something special with just Ada.  (Of course, I had to tag along since I had the car).  First we went to Chick-Fil-A for breakfast - Ada played in the playground until she was tired.  


After breakfast we headed to Picasso, which is a ceramic shop, where the three of us each painted a Christmas ornament.  Ada did really well on the first coat, but by the third coat she was pretty much over it.  BUT, it will be a great family ornament for the tree and a great reminder of her fourth birthday with her Aunt Tul and Nana.

Then it was off to Starbucks for some hot chocolate and cookies.


All good things must come to an end and after our visit to Starbucks we headed back to the house to get Crystal's luggage and Ada's other grandmother picked her up for a special treat.  Then Crystal and I headed back to the airport for her flight back to Nashville.  When I got home I pretty much crashed and slept really well.

Tuesday was Ada's program at her school. 










Her class sang "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" and they were so cute!

Wednesday morning it was time for Nana to head for home - so I told both the girls bye on Tuesday night and then got up bright and early Wednesday and headed back to Dowling Park.

Well, this has been a very picture heavy post and we are only half way through the month.  So, I think I'll close for now and do the last half of the month next week (Christmas decorations AFTER Christmas - how unique is that???)

Anyway, since Dan and I are leaving Sunday morning for Christmas down in Lakeland I just wanted to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas!  I'll see you the week between Christmas and New Year's!

Hugs to all!

Carol




Wednesday, November 29, 2017

What day is it????

That seems to be my mind set lately - there is so much going on that I have a hard time keeping track of the days.  Thank goodness I have a calendar that goes with me everywhere.  Well, let's see if I ca get everyone caught up with the happenings around here.

My last post I left you with our Pal Night trip into town to fill their Operation Christmas Child box.  I had a meeting with one of the Vice Presidents on Tuesday to discuss the refreshments that would be served at the Annual Membership Meeting the first week of November.  Wednesday I worked my shift at the store and came home to get ready for another pontoon boat ride that afternoon.  The ride was scheduled for 5 and we always go down about a half hour early to get everything set up and be there to greet everyone.  Well, at about 4:15 Dan looks at me and said "I don't think I can walk down to the boat."  To which I very calmly replied "WHAT?  WHY????"  He proceeds to tell me that he is having some 'tightness' in the chest.  WHAT?????  A quick call to the cardiologist (who said go to the ER) and another ever quicker call to a stand by captain of the pontoon boat and we were off to Lake City to the ER.  (Yes, there is a hospital in Live Oak, but it doesn't have a very good reputation and the hospital in Lake City specializes in heart issues.  Well, to make a long story somewhat short they decide to keep him overnight for observation.  There was no sign of a heart attack - but they wanted to monitor him for 24 hours.  It was close to 10 before I got home Wednesday night and then I was up bright and early to get to the hospital Thursday morning thinking they would release him that morning.  WRONG!  He was not released until almost 9 PM and once again it was after 10 before we made it back home.  He is feeling much better and we have started back to the fitness center, but it sure did put a scare into us!


We had plans for some friends to come and stay for the weekend to celebrate Neil's birthday, but due to Dan's little episode it was decided to postpone the visit until after the holidays.  We did go down to Neil and Carol's for lunch on Saturday and we were able to give Neil his card and wish him a happy birthday.

Dan was up to a pontoon boat trip on Sunday afternoon, after church.  It was a little chilly on the water, but it was a beautiful day.





Sunday evening we had rehearsal for the Christmas production called Bethlehem and Beyond.  Dan will be one of the Wise Men during the first act and a disciple during the second.  I am just helping out as a "director" since I will not be here when the production is being presented.

Monday the 30th a lady was suppose to come and look at some things my mom wanted to sell, but she had to reschedule due to the birth of a grandchild.

Tuesday was Halloween.  We probably had over 200 kids come for Trick or Treating between 6 and 7:30.  I ran out of candy and during a lull in the kids we quickly went into the house and turned off the outside light, which is a sign to the parents that we are no longer participating.  I think everyone on our street pretty much did the same and by 8 all the little ones were gone.

My daughter sent me some pictures of the girls all dressed for Halloween.



Wednesday, after my shift, we had to make another trip to Lake City for Dan to get a Holter Monitor and have an ISTAT blood test.

Thursday was an Executive Board Meeting..  This was the last before the big Annual Membership Meeting - remember where I said that I was glad that I had finished my term as Secretary.  Well, not so fast.  Seems like the lady who was suppose to take my place backed out and they couldn't find anyone else to do the job.  So, they asked me to continue for another year.  I couldn't leave them in a bind so, I will be Secretary for another year.

Friday morning we had our street breakfast at the café.  Then a quick trip to Lake City to return the Holter Monitor before coming home and doing another pontoon boat excursion.  Then we had a meeting with a nurse from Blue Cross/Blue Shield - part of their annual "wellness" visits.  Then another "moonlight" boat ride at 8 Friday evening.





Saturday, being the first Saturday of the month, meant it was Market Day.  We picked up some smoked ribs for dinner and then went to a garage sale at one of our neighbor's house that has recently sold.  We picked up a few items including a new coffee table for the living room and a beautiful carved chest for the family room.  I also picked up a few decorative items.  We spent the afternoon rearranging furniture in the family room to make room for our new purchases.  The only item of furniture that we can't find a place for is a small farm table that we have had since we lived in Lakeland before moving to North Carolina.  It will probably go in Dan work room for the time being until we decide if we want to sell it or donate it.

Sunday was church, another ride on the river, and then rehearsal Sunday evening.

Monday the lady came to look at the stuff at Mom's.  We ended up selling a lot of things, but not to that lady.  Another friend who has a booth in an Antique Mall bought the things from Mom at a much better price.  Mom is in a "getting rid of stuff" mood and even decided to donate a lot of things to the village - so after loading the van down with stuff we cleaned out a lot of the "junk" around her house.

Tuesday was another busy day with ANOTHER boat trip and the Annual Membership Meeting Tuesday evening.  We also squeezed in a trip to town to pick up some dog food, bird seed, and some items for Mom.

Wednesday was my shift at the store and then another trip on the river.  Thursday we had our fifth boat ride in a week followed by an Executive Board Meeting (the third membership meeting this month) and then another meeting with the maintenance guy on the boat.  I was suppose to meet with Dan and Steve - but the executive board meeting went for two and a half hours and I missed it.  (I have some strong misgivings about this board - but I'll give it a little bit before I make my feeling known)

Friday I got the house straightened, typed up all the minutes (Annual meeting and Thursday's), laundry, and then we headed into town to help decorate the float for Veteran's Day.



All decorated and ready for Saturday's parade.

Oh, I forgot!  Tuesday we also met with someone who will be doing the Pergola.  We decided that Dan is just not up to doing it all by himself, so we have hired someone to do the heavy work and Dan will help when he can.  Eric is scheduled to begin it on December 4th and says it will take him less than a week to get it built.

Saturday morning we got up early and instead of going into town for the parade we went to Shady Grove Baptist Church for their annual Fall Festival.  They fix all kinds of goodies for the community, all free of charge - from sausage and gravy to great northern beans to cornbread and "elephant ears".  They have cane grinding and corn meal grinding.  It is an interesting event and we have gone every year since we have been back.

Sunday was another rehearsal for the Christmas production - then Monday morning we were up early and headed to Jacksonville.  Why???  Well, a new IKEA store opened in Jacksonville the week before (we were suppose to go to the grand opening on Wednesday, but we had that Executive Board Meeting and the pontoon boat ride, so we waited until Monday).  Why were we going to IKEA, other than the fact that it's IKEA?  Well, it was decided that it was time to finish up the laundry room and finally install the cabinets and pantry.  I am so excited and I can't wait to show you how well it turned out - but there are a few little finishing touches that Dan wants to do before I show you.  He did have most of it done before Thanksgiving, but not before a second trip to Jacksonville (will explain that in another post).

Tuesday was a trip to Valdosta to the urologist with a quick stop in Sam's Club for the Thanksgiving ham and a few supplies.  Wednesday was my shift then the craziness started on Thursday - The day started with fasting labs for Dan, then mom had a eye appointment at 9:30 which drug on and on.  We finally had to stop and reschedule to finish up with all the testing because Mom was getting so frustrated and Dan had a doctor's appointment at the cardiologist in Lake City at 12:20.  Then we made that second trip to Jacksonville.

Friday was the Builder's Guild dinner here in the village and Saturday I headed down to Ocala to pick the girls up for the week.  Melissa and Justin came in on Wednesday and then Crystal and the girls dad came in on Thursday morning.  I fixed lunch and mom even came down for the meal.  We were actually sitting at the table and eating by 1:30 - not too shabby.  The kids stayed until Saturday before everyone heading back home leaving me with a virus - went to the doctor today and it is NOT the flu.


 My oldest daughter with the babies (who really aren't babies anymore - when did that happen??)

 My youngest daughter, her husband, and the girls.
 Dan and I - with me sick.


I have been working this week trying to get the house decorated for Christmas, but it is going really slow as I have absolutely no energy.  Hopefully, this thing will pass quickly and I'll get everything done that needs to be done.

Well, I think that has you all caught up - I actually started this two weeks ago, but with everything that's been going on I just hadn't had time to finish it up.

Anyway, hopefully, I'll be able to stay on top of things now.  That will be my goal for next year - we'll see how long that lasts.  Until next time!

Carol



Rainy, Dreary Days

Well, I don't know what the weather has been like where you live but here it has been warm, overcast, and rainy.  We are having temperat...