Friday, October 27, 2006

One man's trash is another man's treasure!

After a few cancellations of having a yard sale with some of my girlfriends, my good friend Moriah would not allow me to back out of the latest suggested date! She can attest that I called her about six times/hour on one day, and I tried to convince her that the 20% chance of rain was just too high! Well, thank the Lord that she's a tough cookie...she did not back down, and we did have our yard sale! After a bitterly cold start, I actually got a sunburn along with a very successful yard sale story! Woohoo! Our newspaper ad said that the sale was from 8-2, but we had customers for a steady 11 hours...from 7-6! We had customers' stopping by the house before the sun came up and asking if they could shop before we finished setting up! We are so thankful to be rid of some things that were clutter to us but a blessing to another!
Again, woohoo!

Trying to get back into the "normal" swing of things!

As wonderful as it is to be back at home, it's even more exhilarating to think of the possibility of getting back into a regular routine (dare I use the word "schedule"?), but then again...that was my plan not God's!

The girls were super excited about starting their new PE classes on the second day that we were back in town. Thankfully, we managed to make it there and then even a few errands to get stocked back up with groceries, etc. Then that evening, I think of my favorite line from a movie, "And the sky opened up, and God said, 'I hate you, Alfalfa!'" I became very ill! I can only assume that it was a result of our complete exhaustion, lack of sleep, taking care of others' not feeling well, as well as missing a couple of vitamins! So after a week of the girls' running the house themselves, Eric's coming home every day at lunchtime, and some wonderful meals prepared by a few friends, Momma's back in full swing!

On the road again!

So after a week of being back at home and trying to get caught up on rest, school and housework, it was time for us to return to Louisiana with the guys to load up the moving trucks. So Mom and Dad flew up there from Florida, and Aunt Jan and Uncle Eddie flew there from Nashville, so that we wouldn't have but the trucks and our car to drive back home. So we began to get ready to return to Louisiana, and wouldn't you know soon as we finish packing up our things for the trip, Annie and Tressie began to show the same symptoms that Macy had earlier in the week! Our dear doctor was expecting our call for this, so he placed them also on antibiotics (surprisingly, it was their first antibiotic in their life!). And after much anxiety of not knowing what to do, Eric decided that we would go ahead and travel on to Louisiana and just keep the girls away from anyone until they had been on their antibiotic for at least 24 hours.

So we left later the next day on Wednesday and traveled into the night and just stayed at a hotel there in Shreveport! You know it was late at night when we arrived when I was talking on my cell phone with my sister to tell her good morning (she's in Europe and six hours ahead of us!), and we went inside to rest for a few hours before getting up to head over to Alal's house to begin loading up the moving trucks.

So the next morning, knowing that the girls and I were in the way, we dropped off Eric and then drove over to visit with my good girlfriend Rachel G. and to allow the girls to play with her kids! So after spending most of the day with them, we returned to Alal's house to find everyone working hard...very hard...especially Eric, who I found neatly packing everything into the back of a HUGE moving truck...and he didn't seem too tired after not having had much sleep the night before! Evidently, everyone kept making sure that he was drinking lots of they kept taking him cold bottles of Mountain Dew, and he was good to go! (And I'm afraid that sweet Pawpaw took a liking to the taste of mountain Dew as well! Oops!) And sweet Aunt Jan had electric cords running out the mail slot to a fan in the back of the truck, so Eric just kept on working like a work-horse! Later that evening...knowing that everyone needed a break, everyone quickly cleaned up, and we all had a really nice time laughing and eating dinner back at The Real Pickle. So that evening, when we returned to the house it was obvious that there was so much more work left to be done... so we decided that everyone would get back to work for a couple of more hours. Eric and I set up the girls in a corner (now I didn't say that they actually stayed in that corner) to watch a movie on his laptop, and we continued taking boxes and furniture into the driveway to determine which moving truck the items would go onto! If there were ever anything that Aunt Jan and I wished to bring back to TN, we would just ask Eric and Uncle Eddie, "Do you think this will fit?" And they'd very assuredly and manly say, "Of course it will!" And Pawpaw kind of just kept walking around in a fog, wondering from where everyone was getting all of their optimism...we were all thinking it wouldn't all fit; however, with great optimism and persuasion, we were all amazed at what we were getting to fit into those trucks! We worked for quite some time, and then Eric and the girls and I headed back to the hotel to get a few more hours of sleep.

The next morning, we grabbed a quick breakfast at the hotel, packed up the van, and headed back to continue packing. Of course, our plan had been to leave Shreveport early Friday morning to drive back as far as Chattanooga/Sewanee; however, there was still just too much to do!

So after another long day of loading up the trucks on Friday, Mom and the girls and I went ahead and said our goodbyes to Pawpaw and began driving back as far as Ruston to have some time to visit with Mamaw. It was nice to just have to "walk away" and not be one of the last ones to leave; however, it was still difficult.

We did enjoy our visit with Mamaw, and to see her healthy and back at her nursing home, for the previous week she had been hospitalized. She enjoyed having the girls push her around the nursing home in her wheel chair, and we were able to pass out a few goodie-bags to some of her friends at the nursing home. The girls and I had brought some "Chattanooga favorites" for her to share with her friends. Then the guys and Aunt Jan called and said that they were finished packing and were driving on toward us. So we went outside and sat on the porch while we waited for the trucks to make it as far as Ruston. And after a while, Eric and Dad pulled up in the first moving truck and got out to give Mamaw a quick hug hello and a kiss goodbye for us to get back on the road. So Mom, the girls and I traveled on in the van, and Eric and Dad in the "FL" moving truck, and Aunt Jan and Uncle Eddie in the "TN" moving truck. And with our radios and nicknames, we traveled on as far as Monroe where we stopped for dinner at a Cracker Barrel...yes, that's not too far down the road, and we weren't traveling very fast! And we had to arrange where and when we would pull those trucks off of the interstate! Uncle Eddie and Eric just said that they had to laugh every time a yellow school bus passed them! We had a quick dinner at Cracker Barrel and got back onto the road. Once Eric and Dad found us a "hotel," we pulled off of the interstate in Vicksburg to rest for the night. Thankfully, we had pre-arranged packing/unloading the luggage, and we were able to easily roll out of the cars and into the beds at the hotel (with Annie and Tressie already peacefully sleeping.) Macy slept in Mimi and Pawpaw's room; Annie slept with Eric and I; and Tressie ended up in Uncle Eddie and Aunt Jan's room...for a while! She later awoke and wanted to get up and have a party while they were going to sleep, so she came on to our room and watched Animal Planet to who knows when...and what did she learn? We'll never know, for we were asleep!

The next morning, we all joined each other downstairs for breakfast and then once again got on the road headed for TN and FL, after quite a few laughs and our parking lot photo shoots! So Mom and Dad got into their truck for FL; Eric and Eddie got in the truck for TN; and Jan got in the car with the girls and I. After saying farewell to Mimi and Pawpaw, we drove on as far as Birmingham where we all had a wonderful time having lunch with K-ren (who gave us her hysterical opinion on everything!). Then back on the road again!

Once we neared the bottom of mountain, we stopped for gas/diesel and made our plan of were we going to get that truck up the mountain with the least amount of hassle. Well, my husband chose the most difficult route, so with lumps in our throat Jan and I followed the truck up the steepest road that goes up the mountain. And now that we know that there are WAY MORE curves coming up that direction, thank the Lord we made it to our street! And as we drove down our road (by now it was dark!) we noticed many cars lining our road and men hanging out by them. Thinking our neighbors were having a party, we slowly drove past them and recognized them as wonderful men from our church! They were there waiting for help us unload the truck! So in less than an hour, they had unloaded what had taken us two days to load! We were so thankful for their help, for I know that we were physically spent! What an honor to be in a church that truly operates as a church family! We felt so loved by their acts of kindness, and it allowed Uncle Eddie and Aunt Jan to stop and catch their breath before heading on toward Sewanee. So after they convinced us that they weren't going to unpack anything up at their house that evening, we showed them off on their way. And trust me...we all slept very soundly that evening...back at home in our own beds!
The next day we attended morning worship, kidnapped Brody from the kennel, called and made sure that Aunt Jan and Uncle Eddie were still alive, and prepared to begin the next week!

A week at home!

Well, it was SO good to be home, but sadly we had brought home a sweet, sick little Macy. After a few days of her not recovering, we called the doctor, and he definitely wanted to see her....he had to put her on an antibiotic for strep throat, and after a few days she did begin to feel better!

October 1st came, and we celebrate Annie's 5 1/2 birthday...I can't believe it! (Most of you know that we celebrate 1/2 birthdays....two of our three children have December birthdays, so we just celebrate them all!) So for her special day, my sweet sister had arranged for her to have a horse-back riding lesson. So the girls and I picked up our sweet friend Miss Craig and then met Daddy downtown, and he drove us up to Cleveland to the horse stables. What a fun time we all had! The owner had such a loving, sweet horse name Prince to use to teach Annie (and the other girls) so many new things! At the end of the visit, she actually had Annie riding the horse and even controlling him on her own. Annie seems to be a natural rider!

Then for a fun dinner, we all went to a restaurant that we had never been to...Texas appropriate it was for us to eat there after leaving the stables! The girls had each earned a gift certificate to eat there from the library's summer reading program, and the table next to us gave us a free certificate for an appetizer, so we hit it big! Annie and her cowboy boots were quite the hit, and the hostess of the restaurant even had her sit up on a huge horse saddle to hear the entire restaurant shout a big, "Yeehaw!" for her 1/2 birthday! I'm not sure what was more fun... seeing Miss Craig having such a good time in an atmosphere like that or seeing Annie having the time of her life! She was so cute, and I'm sure that it's something that she won't forget!