Thursday, July 31, 2008

Crazy days of summer...

I know I haven't been blogging. I am busy emotionally and physically. My mind is full of lots of things and none of those things seem to be making it to my blog. I have physically been working on things for school and organizing the house. I think we will start back to school after next week and I have high hopes of being super organized. I am not going to promise I will post more about that, but I would like to. Timmy has been home this week and I have been just absorbing that he is home and will be leaving very soon. There is more to write on that, of course. I haven't been snapping lots of pictures either. I don't know why. Savannah took these pictures of Sebastian. It is amazing what boredom can do to a 9 year old girl. Sebastian was only too happy to let her mess with him. My goofy boy. If your are an avid blog reader of mine - you may remember she did this awhile back look here. She took him over to show her cousins and Aunt Crystal. Then Aunt Crystal asked Savannah if her mom knew what she had done. I assured Crystal that I didn't think it would warp him too much. I guess we will have to wait and see when he is a teenager if he has flair for crazy hair.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A new normal?

I have had a busy week. On Monday we had a extremely busy girl scout meeting. On Tuesday, I spent a large portion of the day unpacking toys and games. I - yes - ME - I cut shelves using a circular saw. We bought big wardrobe closets months ago, but they needed more shelves. Wednesday, Tim and I met with a lawyer about this lawsuit and then I did laundry, made bread, etc. Today I went shopping for groceries and some school stuff. I have been busy. At times, my mind has floated to how Timmy is in Florida. I miss him on and off, but in the way that I think he will be back soon. Then it HITS ME HEAD ON... he will be back for just a week and then he will move out. Sure, he will come to visit from time to time and maybe he will move back for a short while till he decides what is next after 4 years in the Army. The reality is that he is moving out. With all the business of the week, I can manage to put it out of my mind as it pops in from time to time. On Tuesday, when I went to get a big box of games out of the closet, I found his baby blanket. It was just sitting there waiting for me to see it. Oh, my heart! I held it in my hands and I could almost feel him sitting in my lap holding his blankie. Where does the time go? Why don't they tell you at the hospital that the hard part isn't getting them to sleep through the night? The hard part is letting them go. Tonight, Tim, Savannah, Sebastian and I sat down to eat dinner. I was tired and Tim was tired. Dinner was not a fancy affair. It was Sam's rotisserie chicken, watermelon and potato chips. I told them to pretend the potato chips were mashed potatoes with gravy. As I said the words mashed potatoes - my mind went immediately to Timmy. He loves mashed potatoes. We have eaten lots of meals without Timmy here. He has worked evenings on and off for a long time. The thing is that I would save leftovers for him to have later. I looked at the chicken and realized he wouldn't be here for leftovers. He wasn't here to listen to my bad joke about mashed potatoes. Again, my heart hurt. I realized that THIS was our NEW NORMAL. The new time in our lives where Timmy is not just at work and will be here tonight or tomorrow. I have heard and read stories about letting your kids leave the nest. I had no idea how hard it would be. I am so thankful that I still have young kids to sit at my dinner table. I don't think anyone wants to see me in 15 or 16 years when Sebastian leaves. I don't know how long it will take to get used to our new normal. Part of me doesn't want to get used to it. I want to say NO - NO WAY! I AM NOT READY! I know it doesn't work that way though. I hope he knows how much I love him and how much I will miss him. I will think of him every time I make mashed potatoes or chicken parmisan. So many times throughout my busy day, I will think of him and wonder where he is and what he is doing. I will miss my sweet boy.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The basement...

As some of you may remember, when we purchased this house - it was MANY COLORS. Keith and his crew painted the entire upstairs and Timmy's bedroom in a day. We didn't do much with the basement because it needed work. It was this SCREAMING RED color. I hated it. My family hated it. The problem was that it needed work. Things like putting casing on the windows, patching drywall, adding a ledge around the border, and crown moulding. Tim is working in the 100 plus degree heat these days. He is tired on the weekend and who can blame him? Sometimes I like to think I have gained wisdom as I have aged. One of the things I have learned is that it is not good for a marriage or relationship to constantly have a long TO DO list for your spouse. We bought our other house in 1999. The house was in okay condition. A few things needed quick attention, but really it was completely fine to accept. I went into overdrive on how I wanted this room to be or that room to be. Tim was on board for a lot of it, but sometimes he would have liked to have done no house projects. It took a toll on us. We finished that house to put it up for sale. The projects were DONE and then we MOVED OUT. When Tim saw how much work this house had, he felt just ill. I kept telling him there was no hurry to get it all done. He really did work to get the upstairs pretty much done along with all that painting his brother, sister and crew did. I kept thinking about that basement and all the work that needed to be done. I decided to go ahead and paint. All those things are not done, but the color change made it so much more inviting. I hung up curtains and put up blinds - you just don't know the windows aren't finished under there. We still need crown moulding, trim and a ledge in parts, but it is so much better. We don't hate to watch tv down there anymore. I have no idea when he will get to those projects and I really don't care. I just want to enjoy our movie space as best as we can without the stress. Amazing what one can figure out as they grow up!

I am not sure the picture shows how SCREAMING RED it was!
It is like a pale blue-green. I think very beachy.

He is starting to think about what he will put in the big fishtank.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

It's OFFICIAL - Tim II has joined the ARMY...

This is the letter I sent to family - well two emails combined because I forgot something in the first one.

Hey y'all. Tim II (I really can't keep calling him Timmy now can I?) joined the Army, yesterday. He actually went to MEPS on Monday afternoon. He spent the night in a hotel and was taken to the facility around 5am on Tuesday. I waited and waited all day for a call. Nothing. Around 9:30pm - he called and said he was still waiting to go into negotiations. Around 12:30 AM on Wednesday MORNING - he called to say that he didn't decide on anything. He told them he needed to see more options and that he was not going to sign away 4 years of his life after sitting there for 19 hours. They sent him back to the hotel and told him to come back in the morning. He went back on Wednesday morning and started negotiations again. He said they would not offer him anything in the medical field like he wanted. They only had one medical field option and that was Food Inspector. He didn't care for that. He did finally find one job that he thought he might enjoy. It isn't something like Xray tech that he will have a skill after he gets out, but it is something he would like to learn and will get him through. The official title is Click here: > Careers & Jobs > Field Artillery Automated Tactical Data System Specialist (13D) . He did really good negotiating for his best interest. He got a $40,000 bonus and $63,000 for college money. That is about as good as it gets! Now for the news that makes his mom's heart sink. He has to go to Fort Sill Oklahoma on August 4th (my dad's birthday). Wow! I was thinking this whole time that he would do boot camp at one of the close places. There are several around where we live. Fort Sill is 17 hours and 8 minutes away. Yes, I checked as quickly as I could. He will do 9 weeks of Basic Training and then 7 weeks of AIT there in Oklahoma. He doesn't know where he would go after that. He is going to be here in SC for a couple of days and then he is going back to Florida for a week or so. I wanted to thank you all for your prayers and hanging in there with me. Now, I need to you hang in there with me some more. I will keep you all updated to where he is and what he is doing. Keep him in your prayers and pray that I don't fall apart when he leaves. Also, can you pray for Savannah - she is trying hard to be brave that he is leaving, but I know she is going to have a hard time! Thanks everyone!

P.S. I forgot to say how PROUD we are of him and the decision he made. He worked so hard to get here. He lost something like 60lbs and studied to get a good score on his ASVAB test. We are pleased with all that he has done!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


I was looking for a picture of my sister-in-law, Karen. I couldn't find one that I hadn't already posted on my blog somewhere. The past 2 weeks has been unbearably stressful for me and my family. I couldn't blog because it was all I could do just to stay sane. My wonderful sister-in-law - Karen - made some brownies on Friday night. I know that sounds really simple. Brownies with a Symphony Bar added in the batter. AMAZING! She invited me over to have some. Remember that I try to find the blessings in everyday? This was a blessing! I am far from seeing all the problems worked out. My sister is still in the hospital and hopefully coming home soon. Tim II is still with the military trying to hammer out a deal. So far, they aren't giving him near what he wants. He was there, yesterday, from 5am to 12:30am. That was a long day. My lawsuit is still in limbo. My renters don't seem to be doing the work to buy the house. I don't have a whole lot of money or time to get up to Illinois to visit with my wonderful friends, Sebastian is still not potty trained. These are still all problems on my list. BUT... Karen made AMAZING brownies. She let me come over TWICE to eat brownies this past weekend. The second time, I ended up crying while I sat there. What a blessing to have a brownie and a shoulder to cry on. The week hasn't been as bad as it could have been, so I am finding God's grace.

Friday, July 04, 2008

A butterfly garden...

A quick update on my downer post - things are fixed by any means, but I think I have an idea of our next step on several things. I appreciate the kind words and emails! Right now, we are in a hotel in Georgia - on our way to Florida. We have a busy weekend planned and will be back in South Carolina on Monday. I didn't like knowing my last post was not a happy one, so I needed to add something. A little while back, Savannah and her Girl Scout troop planted a butterfly garden at a nursing home. They did this to earn their bronze award. The girls worked really hard planning and learning about a butterfly garden. Then they had to put their muscle into it. There is CLAY dirt in South Carolina. It was not fun digging it up. In the end, I think they did a great job and was really proud of them!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

I could use some prayer...

My blog is supposed to be my happy place, so I will try to keep this short and sweet. There are three issues that I am struggling with. I have, for the most part, been able to keep my spirits up through all the things of the last year. Two weeks ago we were served with a lawsuit from our lake association. Our house is sorta on a lake - if you consider the swampy part of our backyard the lake. It is a really, really long story and I just don't want to fill my blog with it. The short of it is that we feel that we didn't actually join the association and are not responsible for any fees they are trying to charge us. They say we are not given an option of membership. I met with a very nice lawyer today and he said we may be stuck. I am holding out hope that there is something that can be done. They are asking for $3500 and honestly, that is a whole lot of money for us right now. I could use prayers that this will be resolved. The other thing, is our tenants didn't get approved for their loan. I don't really know all the details, but I really need some prayers that they will do the work to get a loan approval. So many things depend on us selling this house. I am also working on some health issues with Sebastian and potty training. It turns out that it isn't really all about him being stubborn. He may actually have a physical reason for not getting this. I am doing the best I can to figure my little boy out. Tonight I am just tired. When I spoke to the nice lawyer today, he asked me a few questions about things from the last year. I found myself thinking about and talking about some of the things. In my head and some in my words went like this - I got served with a lien last summer. I couldn't pay the lien and two house payments, then my husband broke his collar bone and was off work for a month. The holidays were next. Two days after Christmas, my husband had a job and we had to move in two weeks. We rented our house and moved my whole family including my mom and sister. A week and a half after our move, Savannah crushed her ankle and spent 4 days in the hospital. She comes home with a full leg cast for a month. Meanwhile we are trying to find a home for my mom and sister. We get them a place and have to do a whole move again. Then, my son crashed into a deer going 70 mph and wrecks his car. Next, Savannah has to have another surgery. We have to travel to Florida and then to Virginia. Finally, I am served with a lawsuit. Whew! That is just the last 9 months or so. The lawyer asks me what brought me to South Carolina. I tell him that is a long story. I simply say that I was laid off from my job and felt like I should move to be by my late sister-in-law's kids. When I think of all this, I realize that I probably am entitled to feel down right now. I just don't like feeling down. I feel like there has been a definite plan for our lives. I just am having a hard time having faith at the moment.