Gone to the beach...

...see you in two weeks!

And here I sit...

I'm leaving early in the morning -- heading down to West Palm Beach for two weeks before reality sets in August 5th and I'm back to work. In preparation for my trip, I've been making a list of things to do. I'm a list maker. Making lists. Yep! That's one of my specialties. Making lists. Checking things off! But the problem is, I'm NOT checking things off!

You know how sometimes when you have so much to do, it's overwhelming and you sit not knowing where to start? That's me -- sitting here -- blogging, twittering, facebooking, and 'oh yeah, I wanted to look that up real quick' or 'shoot! I forgot to read that yesterday! let me catch up on her posts now!' or 'oops! There goes the dryer! I'll just turn it back on for about 15 more minutes to let the clothes fluff before I put them away!'

Sound familiar?

And then before I realize it, hours have slipped by and I've accomplished nothing! So, I'm off to finish the laundry, pack, run errands, and head to the chiropractor. But if in a little while you see me on facebook or twittering, or if I stop by and comment on your blog, shhhhhh! Pretend you didn't see me... and it will just be our little secret!

Busy Weekend...Busier week ahead!

This weekend Gary's daughter, Blaire, came in town with her husband, Jon, and 8 month old son, Carter. Yes, that makes Gary a "Paw-Paw" and me, well, I'm a "MeMe"...cause you know I'm too young to be a granny!!! We had a wonderful weekend just loving on that baby and watching every little expression on his face and oooooing and ahhhhhing over every little jibber-jabber he made with his voice! So precious! They actually live in Georgia about 10 minutes from my mom, but we don't get to see them often enough. So, we were thrilled when they agreed to pack up half their house and head south!

Click this link for photos...

These next few days are crazy busy for me. I have several Dr.'s appts (just check-ups/chiropractor, etc.), laundry to do, groceries to purchase, packing, driving... ahhhh! I'm tired already! I'll be headed to West Palm Beach on Wednesday for my last two weeks of summer before I have to report to school on the 5th of August.

Where did the summer go?! Not gonna think about that now...just holding on to the notion of an endless summer! Wouldn't that be nice?!

How 'bout you? Can you stand the heat or do you prefer the winter?

GROUT: Ghastly to Great!!!

Some of you that are my friends on Facebook or Twitter have been following my kitchen grout dilema! Hubby and I decided to tile the kitchen about 6 years ago--neither one of us having ever tiled anything before, were like the blind leading the blind in Home Depot. For some unknown reason I chose a light sand colored grout (like the sand in the Gulf). Over the years, it has become dingy and stained and no amount of products, by themselves, or mixed by my experimentation in my homemade chemistry lab (also known as the kitchen), would work!

But Wednesday evening, the Twitter gods shined down on me and my Grout Angel, also known as Antique Mommy, sent me a message about a product called "Grout Renew" an All-in one colorant and sealer. So yesterday I ran right out, well, actually drove, cause here in South Alabama it was about 97 degrees with what felt like a heat index of 110, and I wouldn't have made it further than the end of my street before passing out, ummm...where was I? Oh yeah, I drove over to Home Depot and picked me up some magic in a bottle!

I chose a color called "Sandstone"...uh-oh! Not the sand color again! No, this one is a darker taupe color, like the sand on the east coast of Florida. Also picked up some little spongey things on a stick to paint with (also recommended by Antique Mommy), came home and got to work!

Four hours later I was finished and looking over my kitchen floor with the smugness of a Grout Colorant Expert! Ok, well, that's a little bit of a stretch. But I was really pleased with the results! It probably wouldn't have taken that long except I went back over a few places once I got the hang of it! ('Before' and 'After' pictures below for your viewing enjoyment!)

It just goes to show, out there in Cyberland, not only are there great friends to be made, but a wealth of information waiting to be discovered!

A sampling of products I used in my desperation...
The floors "before"...you might think they don't look so bad, but...
closer up this is the nasty grout!
Drove over to my local Home Depot...
Excited about getting started with the "Grout Renew"!

Actually, it's the Dog Days of Summer!

I love animals. Really, I do! I have three cats and a dog! But I'm about ready to make my neighbor's dog disappear. We have leash laws here, but apparently the neighbors don't think it applies to them.

They just open up their front door and let their dog, Booger, [yes, you read correctly] run free outside anytime they are home. Booger likes to dig in my yard. Booger likes to poop on my driveway. Booger likes to pee all over our yard to "mark" it--which in turn, makes my puppy dig his heels in and refuse to leave the driveway--which in turn, forces us to walk across the street and down a few houses to an empty lot for him to do his "business".

Neighbors are nice people and hubby doesn't want to say anything to them about it because he's afraid it would make them mad. What??? I have no doubt they would say something to us if the 'poop' were on the other foot!

What would you do?

But wait, there's more. God smiled down on me this morning. While hubby was outside with our ever-so-precious puppy a few minutes ago, Mr. Neighbor asked Gary if they could give us a key to check on their dog while they are out of town the next 10 days.

Of course we will!

[Note: no animals were hurt during this posting!]

Whatever happened to the lazy days of summer?

One of the best things about my job working at a school is that I have the summer off. Well, really, not the whole summer, just the months of June and July. But even for that, I am grateful! By the way, do you remember the days when we would get out of school the first week of June and not go back until after Labor Day weekend?! Whatever happened to that schedule?

Anyway, I have not been able to sleep in one single day since I've been off. Most days I get up between 6 and 6:30 a.m. The latest I've slept in was 7:30 a.m. And I have not really been able to just "chill" and do absolutely nothing. The first two weeks I was out of school, I was cleaning the house like a mad woman--even scrubbing floors for hours with a toothbrush! Then I decided to organize the office and clean out drawers and old files and from there, I moved to the outside of the house! My poor hubby! I've had him cutting down trees, and he and I have worked like mexicans the past couple of days trimming bushes, weedeating, cutting limbs, edging, etc. {No offense to any of my mexican friends out there! I think y'all are the hardest working people I know!}

Today, I'm paying for it. I don't know if it's because I've been working out or from working in the yard, but I have sore muscles where I didn't even know I had muscles! But there's no rest for the weary! Gary's daughter and her husband and baby are coming in town for the weekend, so it's off to mop, dust, and get the guest room ready! Amazing how your perspective of a "clean house" changes when you know a baby will be crawling around!

I do plan to finish out the summer taking advantage of "lazy" though... I'll be vegging in West Palm Beach July 22nd - August 4th, then it's back to reality August 5th... what a wake-up call!

Missing my family...

It's been a long time since I've blogged. No good reason. No excuses.

But today, more than ever, I've realized how much I miss my "family". The friendships I made over the years through the blog were stronger bonds than I knew could be possible from strangers that became friends. When I was hurting, your tears fell right along with mine. When I was rejoicing over good news, your applause could be heard louder than anyone else's. When I needed prayer, you didn't ask questions, just went straight to the throne and lifted my name.

You've always been there for me. Cheering. Loving. Praying. Encouraging. And today, I was reminded how much I've missed you, and how much I need this circle of friends.

Thank you for being here...then and now.
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