Wednesday, January 8, 2014

My Annual Post

Roaring River State Park, Missouri
I'm not really sure why I hang onto this blog. Obviously it's not a place I often visit, other than in my head.  I do sort of use it as a  timeline, or mile marker. The older I get, the harder it is for me to remember what I did, and when. Granted, I'm not logging much here, but what little I do, at least I know when it happened!

We were  thrilled to have our daughter, Nikki, home with us over the Christmas holidays.  Her husband is working out of the country, so she loaded up our two grand puppies, and  made the 12 hour trek  from Colorado to Texas to spend her two week break from school with us.

I loved having her here, but with  such a lengthy stay, I got used to having her around. It  made saying goodbye harder than usual.  I watched her that last morning, busying herself with packing her bags, loading her car, and getting the pups ready.  As she stood there applying her make-up in my bathroom, I went back in time. It's like I was seeing her at 9 or 10 years old.  I thought to myself, "This can't be right. She can't be packing and planning on driving away from us. She's only a child!".  I guess I still think of her as my baby, even though she's in her late 20's.  I try not to treat her as one, but I can't help that I still feel that way. Maybe it will change when she has children of her own?

This last year has brought about changes in our lives, but nothing too spectacular. New health challenges have cropped up for both Mr. Studley and I; nothing too serious, but leaving their mark on our day-to-day lives, nonetheless.  Plus, Studley has completely retired now. That means more of him at home, which I do love, but a serious dent in our monthly income, which I don't. God is good, though. He is our Provider. On paper, things often look bleak, and yet, provision often comes from the most unexpected sources.  We're faithful in our tithes and offerings, and we have learned over the years to trust in our God.  He has never failed us!

We spent a week camping on Table Rock Lake, in Missouri, last May.  May, for us here in northeast Texas, is already summer weather. We did check the forecast before we headed up to MO. I knew it would be 'cool' there that week, but we never anticipated the surprise winter storm that blew in SNOW. Neither of us packed clothing for freezing temps. We made a run to Walmart in nearby Cassville, only to discover that they'd sold out of winter wear. Fortunately, I found a zip-up hoodie of my son's in our closet, and Studley had brought a hoodie. I did find a pair of velour yoga pants at Walmart, in my size, and marked down to $2.  I got way more than $2 worth of wear out of those pants.  We survived, and after a few days, the nice weather returned, and we made a trip to nearby Roaring River State Park. That is only one of 100+ pics I took of that river. I fell in love with it. It seriously soothed my soul to stand and watch the never ending flow of blue-green water.  We also spent a week camping by a river in Arkansas in May (same one as last year), as well as two weeks there in the fall. The foliage was spectacular this year!  We love being there.

I am thrilled at the return of Downton Abbey, for season 4.  I have laid claim to the tv on Sunday nights, or at least to the dvr. I actually record it, then watch it later when I'm alone. Studley has this habit of walking into a room talking. It's a tad annoying to be watching the last 5 minutes of a show, usually a climatic scene, and have him walk in and, in his booming voice,  ask me  if we're out of popcorn, or some other inane question which COULD HAVE WAITED.  For the sake of peace in our midst, I've determined that dvr'ing now, and watching later, is the best way to go with a program that I really want to hear.
Icepocalypse 2013

The picture above is of our house in the recent Icepocalypse. It was bad, seriously bad. It had rained for three days prior to the subfreezing temps. All that water froze into a thick layer of ice on all the trees. The weight of the ice had trees snapping all over town. It was quite eerie lying in bed at night, listening to the snap, crackle, and popping of tree limbs, followed by the 'kabooms!' when they landed on our roof. We could hear this all so clearly, since there was no hum of the central heating to disturb us, seeing that we had NO POWER. At least ours was only out for 3 days. Many were without power for much longer.  We were cold, but not miserably so. I was still able to make it to facebook on my trusty iPhone, which I charged in the truck.  Sadly, we lost two very large trees. I keep thinking about all the birds and squirrels that took refuge in them.  It's so strange to look up and down our street and see so much sky, where before we saw trees. Many trees were lost as a result of the ice.  

Being dog people, we enjoyed having Nikki's pups here with her. Charlie, the small dog, was adopted from a rescue center (actually, both her dogs were) last summer. He & Macy became immediate friends, and love to play. Charlie's an adorable little dog, who loves nothing better than to lay in your lap. Unfortunately, he's bitten Nikki a couple of times; once when she picked him up to move him, and another time when she attempted to take something from his mouth that he wasn't supposed to have. She's a firm disciplinarian, who is very consistent in her training. I feel she'll manage to break him of this bad habit. I pray he doesn't seriously hurt her before it happens.  Any suggestions from anyone who's dealt with this?

I'll sign off with a picture of my two sweeties.
My grandpuppies, Macy (at top) & Charlie

Don’t bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need. This isn’t a cat-and-mouse, hide-and-seek game we’re in. If your child asks for bread, do you trick him with sawdust? If he asks for fish, do you scare him with a live snake on his plate? As bad as you are, you wouldn’t think of such a thing. You’re at least decent to your own children. So don’t you think the God who conceived you in love will be even better?
~Matthew 7:7-11 the Message Bible


magnoliasntea said...

Hellooooooo Ms. Renna!
When I checked my reader and noticed you had posted I got a cup of coffee and a slice of warm banana bread and sat down for a nice visit. And a good one it was, too. Never,ever read a dull post here.

I'm so glad you posted so we could catch up with you. And I'm so glad you had a nice long visit with your daughter. Children just have no idea what it's like for us parents to be left at home when they go off to have their own lives, the nerve. Our last pup's name was Charlie, a rat terrier. RIP Charlie. The Monks of Mesquite (or something like that) who wrote a great book on dog training say to put a non-submissive dog on it's back and hold it there until it submits so that it knows who's the boss. It worked for our daughter's two Jack Russell Terriers. (Terrors if not trained properly. ;)

That's some ice storm you had, so sorry about the trees. We managed to skate by this recent storm with just low temps and a small amount of ice.

About husbands retiring - I'm not sure it's that great of a thing for their wives. For pete's sake you go through years (happily at home all by yourself doing as you please then they retire and invade your space. My husband retired for three years, but he got another job recently for two reasons. 1. we needed more money 2. we needed some space *smiles*
It was great to hear from you!