Monday, June 29, 2009

Healing and Moving Forward

It's been 7 months since the loss of my brother and although I miss him more than words can express, I have felt a small sense of healing taking place. We still have his property, house, boat, and so on and we plan to keep that for now.

My parents have been diligent in keeping up the massive amounts of yard work that needs to be done. He lived in a rural area on quite a bit of acreage and his house was surrounded by a few small bodies of water. It is really a beautiful area out there. I would actually contemplate building my forever house on that land one day. My mom and dad always seem to do this labor intensive work during the week day mornings and I told them that I would be glad to help out if they would save it for the weekends (when I had some free time).

I felt the bomb beginning to drop when my father said, "Welllllllll....what I REALLY need is......" I felt that ache in the pit of my stomach, but was more than willing to do whatever that request was going to be. He asked if I would be willing to go inside of the house and pack up my brother's things. Gulp. Yes. It really does need to be done and I would be more than honored to be able to quietly go through things and reflect on the happy memories of the past.

I am ready.

In the days ahead, I will begin making plans to do this with a small bit of joy in my heart. The past has been a very difficult adjustment for my family. We have had prayers galore and have felt and needed every single one of those.

Time is the healer of all things. It doesn't mean that you ever forget. It just means that you are allowed to move on to a new normal. Not better. Just new.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

It Ain't Hell, But We Can See It From Here

This will be brief today. It will be a classic case of "a picture is worth a thousand words."

Yes, this the leader of the wonderful state of South Carolina in which I live. Although I am proud to be a native of the precious and sacred place that I call "home," I am NOT so proud to have our Governor Mark Sanford stand up in front of the nation and tell us that he has been preoccupied with something other than the well-being of our failing economy on a local and national level. What is this world coming to?

Yes, he is human. We all make mistakes. No one is perfect. Enough said.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

John and Kate = Hate

I don't consider myself obsessed with John and Kate and their little tribe of cute kiddies, but I do, for whatever reason, find them interesting. Maybe it is due to the earlier episodes where they portrayed this family to have the majority of their life in line and managed to run their household like nothing short of a troop of army men.

I waited all week to view the "new" episode where John and Kate would announce their decision to be or not to be. In the back of my mind, I remembered my younger days where my grandmother would sit, watching The Young and The Restless and dared anyone to move or speak during that hour of soaps. On this night, I laid the ground rules for "NO TALKING" because I wanted to be sure that my nose was glued to the TV Monday night and I didn't want to miss a thing. My life is so exciting - wink, wink.

Right before the episode aired, I posted on Facebook, "I hope John and Kate don't throw in the towel." I had a few great comments from friends and I looked down below and saw that my friend, Pete, posted, "I don't know why anyone would watch John and Kate because it is ridiculously stupid." Boy, I felt a little kick in the teeth on that one! He had a truck load of other men that agreed with him totally! (dummy's).

The funniest comment that I did receive was that from my friend, Beth. She said that she didn't hear a single word John said because she was hypnotized from the two earring he had shining in BOTH ears! Was that new? Did he just get those? I can't imagine ME not noticing "bling" from a mile away!!

In the end, John and Kate did announce to "dissolve" their marriage. I am not so sure why I was so crazy about watching this show because I actually walked away feeling a little depressed about it. Sigh.

Why is it that we allow ourselves to be absorbed into someone else's problems? Is it because, for a brief moment, we can take the focus off of ourselves and rest assured that no one has a picture perfect is because we don't have enough drama of our own to deal with?

By the way, those oldest girls have turned into little brats, anyway. I don't think I'll be watching much anymore.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Open Mouth, Insert Foot

A Chatty Cathy, I am. And sometimes, that is NOT a good thing. I never know a stranger and try, for the most part, to make everyone feel like a long lost friend. Over- social, some might say.

We decided to join the pool again this year and much to my dismay, my neighbor decided to do the same. Yep, that's correct. I am referring to the neighbor that I blogged about (with photo's attached) and her lack of yard maintenance.

We unpacked our stuff at the pool on Saturday, and in she comes with her children tagging behind. It was less than crowded because I think all of the TRUE sun-worshippers had wimped out on me due to the massive heat index's sweeping across the south. I had no choice but to acknowledge her presence. We sort of pal'd around for a few hours and she never once made mention of me mowing the side area of her lawn. She ignored it like it never even took place!! I must say that I think it was out of embarrassment that she chose to be tight lipped.

We talked about random things and I told her a story of a blog that I recently started to follow about a woman who was in a crisis in her life, etc.... and out she blurted, "You have a blog? What is the name because I blog, too?" I felt my heart skip a beat! All I could think of was her reading my blog and recognizing the pictures of her jungle-like yard posted all over the internet. My only recourse was to tell a little white like and give her a made up name and pray that this subject never rears it's ugly head again!

Now, my advise to myself: Self: As Madea would say it, "put the shut to the up and SHUT UP!"

That's what I get for hanging out with someone that I really don't like, anyway!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Concerned Consumer

The new fad in sunscreen comes in an aerosol can. I have 2 concerns with this product. First, it's effectiveness is in question due mainly in part to what I have witnessed with my own two eyes over the last year or so. After our vacation to the beach, I noticed that very few people were using the good ole' fashioned lotion sunscreen. I also noticed that I saw lots more kids who were lit up like fireworks on the 4th of July from intense sunburns. OUCH!! My heart sank for these poor children who probably had the majority of their vacation ruined because they had to live in pain for days on end. I saw loads of parents spraying their children down with this fairly new product and by the end of the day (I know this because I spent ALL DAY at the pool and noticed the rapid progression of a shade of scarlet coming to life) 1/2 of these folks were glowing!

My second concern is that you really are not getting a lot of "bang for your buck" when you purchase these products. I decided to try it out and bought a double pack at WalMart for $10.99 and after one day, the can was empty and my 11 year old was pink around the edges. And, yes, I did follow directions. They promote this stuff by saying that it gives a more even coverage. I disagree. What I saw was the majority of spray flying into the wind and on my neighbor sitting beside me in her beach chair as she got a mouth full.

Now, my initial concerns were shared with several of my co-workers and I had 3 of them tell me that they were unsuccessful in using this product and several family members got rather pink after being in the sun for a minimal amount of time. I also asked around to parents at the softball field and they shared the same thoughts.

So, with that being said, I decided to post something on the Trip Advisor Forum under the Myrtle Beach, SC section and was floored at the amount of folks that disagreed with me. How can this be that the majority ruled in disappointment from personal acquaintances and ALL others online (with the exception of ONE person) thought that this was the best invention since electricity??

Am I missing something here?

Sorry, I am not having a whole lot of faith in this product based on my own experience.

Convenience does not always rule. Not in this case, anyway.

Questions? Comments? Complaints?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Taking Matters Into My Own Hands

I don't live in a neighborhood with a vulturing homeowners association breathing down my neck constantly, but in a case like this, I long to have someone who can "formally" tell my neighbors that living like Fred Sanford is not acceptable.

There are 4 people living in this house= 1 mom, 1 dad, 1 -11 year old, and 1 -7 year old. Typical all-American family one would think. Dad works and mom stays at home and home schools the two children. They must spend all of their time occupying the kids because she surly don't spend it taking care of their lawn.

Last year, we had this same problem. Their constant excuse for letting their grass get calf high was that the lawn mower was broken. Umm...the last time I checked, our town Wal Mart was fully functioning and push mowers did not require you to refinance your home.

Moving forward, I peered through their wooden privacy fence several weeks ago and I was horrified to see that the grass was so high, they would probably need a bush hog to cut it! I am kidding you not. They acutally had some weeds that were turning into small trees!!

In my mind, I agreed to give them one more week to get the grass cut that bordered my property or I would take matters into my own hands and cut it myself while manicuring my own lawn. Yesterday was D-day and I had become fed up! We took one deep breath and mowed it all down. They were both gone during the day and arrived before dusk so it was clearly visible that change had taken place in their absence. I half way expected a visitor last night but not a peep was heard. Maybe this will embarrass the so-called man of the house over there to clean his yard up!

Here is a little evidence to share:

Notice how the paint around the door frame has peeled off?

Friday, June 5, 2009

Move Over Candles!

Scentsy. The hottest new thing in candles. I am always on the look out for the newest diva products. Although I am no Tupperware lady and have no desire to start an at-home business, I must say that if I had to pick something to endorse, this would be it! I love this stuff!

This is a wick less system that uses a small 25-watt bulb to melt the wax slowly with no flames or soot. What I like about these folks is the simplicity of their products. You can easily choose from the two types of warms they offer.

The Deluxe Scentsy Warmer comes in lots of designs to fit the decor of your larger room.

And the Scentsy Plug-In Warmers are great for small spaces such as a bathroom, guest bedroom or kitchen area.

The scents that they offer are rather appealing! Skinny Dippin', White Tea & Cactus, Pineapple Paradise, Sangria, Sticky Cinnamon Bun, French Kiss, Wasabi Ginger, and Enchanted Mist are just to name a few.
If you try these, I guarantee they don't disappoint!

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