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Friday, July 30, 2010

Happy Birthday Baby!

Today is my husband's birthday.
I'm SO THANKFUL he was born.

I'm so HONORED he picked me to live this life with.
Truly, I am.
This is what he does to me.
Calms me down and secures me.
Grounds me.
Actually, he does this to most people that know him.
He is peace.

He is BRAVELY leading the way as a Daddy.
He is doing his best and letting God do the rest.

He is a servant leader, unlike ANY I have ever witnessed.
Someday our children will know the treasure that is their Daddy....

He gives endlessly to those around him.
He is selfless.
*sounds like Someone Else I know*One day
when our wagon is empty
we will still be hand-in-hand.
Oh, I pray it so.
May our days be long with one another.
May he know the depth of our love toward him.
This toast was made to him several years ago at his birthday party,
but I say it again because it fits so well:


"Life is a storm, my young friend.
You will bask in the sunlight one moment,
be shattered on the rocks the next.
What makes you a man is what you do when that storm comes.
You must look into that storm and shout as you did in Rome.
Do your worst, for I will do mine!
Then the fates will know you as we know you:
as Albert Mondego, the man!"
~a quote from one of our favorite movies, "The Count of Monte Cristo"~

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Carriage House Renovations

It seems a pity to just post a couple pics and be on our way. MY HUSBAND WORKS SO HARD IT'S NOT EVEN FUNNY!!!! These pictures hardly do him justice!! He's doing his very best at this balancing act....and that's surely what it is. With spending time with his family, running his own business during BUSY SEASON, keeping our friendships strong and taking care of the property here, he's a busy man! Last year around this time is when we started. He ripped off that huge tin roof and had it recycled. One early morning around 4am my husband climbed up onto the roof and started ripping off 100 year old cedar shakes. With this machine from my brother-in-laws business, (Sam S. Smucker & Sons), a lot was done in one day!!! Thank you Marlin!
There atop the roof sits another brother-in-law, (or as Jake calls them the "out laws")!! Thanks Lin for your hard work on a hot Saturday!!
Marlin taking wheelbarrow loads of the cedar shakes to the pile.
My brother Mel, (a former roofer) stayed late into the night working by the moon to get the new roof on! Thank you Melvin, (that's him with the thumbs up)!!!
The beautiful new roof. In the first picture of this post you'll see the carriage house flanked by two massive evergreens. As you may remember my husband went ahead & cut them down, threw them into the pile o' cedar shakes and poured some lighter fluid around it and lit the match......all by himself. You can see the rest of the story here!!!!! *sorry if you're a regular reader and I'm talking about this AGAIN, it's just so darn funny!*
Some new landscaping was done around the side after the yard was all dug up to put new
water and sewer lines. That was quite the scene.....3 foot ditches weaving all over our yard!!
See that dirt area? That will be our new garage.
The sod cutter. It cuts up the good grass and so it can be properly rolled and removed then placed where it's needed. *You'll see a little boy in most of these pictures, Luke LOVES to "help" his Daddy. He'll spend hours by his side, I've never seen anything like it before!

Don't let those rolls deceive you. THEY ARE CRAZY HEAVY!! On another Saturday he got the jackhammer out and cracked the old floor to bits. I was in pain just watching him bounce around all day with that thing. HE'S A-M-A-Z-I-N-G and I'll be the first and last to say that again and again and again and again and.......
Then he took the mother of all saws and cut the concrete to prepare for the new foundation.
He breaks out these crazy tools all the time, I never know what will be next!!!!

precious excitement!!!!
During another Saturday our nephew Reuben came to help. This was a very sweet thing because it warms Mama's, (Annie) heart to see her son and grandson working on her behalf.
I can only imagine.
All her boys working hard to get the floor insulated. Prior to this day Jake had dug down one foot into the dirt foundation, leveled it out and placed 8 TON of stone in it. Eight Ton. Oh. my. word. On this particular day Jake & Reuben were placing plastic on top of the stone and then large sheets of insulation on top of that. Next will be the radiant flooring.
The radiant floors were put in next, (Mama always has cold feet....we thought this might help, plus it's a great efficient source of heat). You'll see the far wall has been knocked out so as to extend her living area.
Another "visitor" one early morning.
A boys dream come true!
Our Amish neighbor worked hard all day long to get the concrete looking just perfect.
A few weeks later Marlin & Mel graciously joined Jake in the pouring rain!
They removed those beautiful black doors and I mean that....they were distressed to perfection!
They will be re-purposed one way or another!
They framed up the front and side and got ready to cut the windows out. Teamwork!!!!
Luke, Tyler and Chase watching their Daddy's work hard!!
Now it's really starting to come together!!
The Man. My Man.
I think I'll treat those two windows as one, meaning there will be shutters on either side of the sets of windows. And can't you just see large flower boxes under the windows? I can!!
The view from her living room.
Her kitchen window to the left and the patio door to the right.
There are lots of windows all around, beautiful light.
Her entrance is to the far right.
It's going to be lovely once it's all finished.
Bless Jake's heart for honoring his Mother like this.
And to all of you who selflessly share your "day off" with us! THANK YOU!!!
I told her the other day that if she doesn't leave for 3 months once she's all moved in,
I wouldn't blame her. To FINALLY have a place to call HOME, there's no feeling like it.
Imagine being 72 and saying that!!
I pray she has many, many healthy & happy years here.
"It takes hands to build a house,
but only hearts can build a home."
~Author Unknown~

Thursday, July 22, 2010

My Kitchen

I have a thing for dishes.
I got it from my Mom.
I also have a thing for COLOR!!
I married a "vanilla" man who has so graciously embraced my rainbow self!
He says I bring the spice to his life!
That makes my heart smile.

I also have a thing for looking in peoples cupboards.
I know, it's sick, but I do it anyway.
Know why? Because it shows me a little bit more about who you are....
and just about every time it confirms something of your personality....
It doesn't mean less or more to WHO you are,
it's just a little glimpse.

I think our space speaks about who we are....
and I find it fascinating how someones personality spills over into the everyday things.
Take, for instance, your cups.
My sisters have cups that all look the same.
All beautifully lined up and orderly and matching and.....well,
calm, even, peaceful....just like them.
I on the other hand have loud, wild, crazy cups!

and bowls and plates.

Don't mind the Christmas pictures that are STILL hanging on the wall~
I like to have my friends near year round!!

welcome to my little kitchen.
Where I live life & eat leftover pb & j's.
*a little peek of the laundry room, freshly painted BRIGHT blue,
which my husband has now declared is his "favorite" room in the house!*
I'll give a little tour of that another day.

"Thank God for dirty dishes
They have a tale to tell
While others may go hungry
We're eating very well."

My corner cafe'
See that chandellier?
My beauty found at a garage sale for........don't hate me.......$5!!

WHO sells a flippin chandelier for $5??
Not Pottery Barn, that's for sure!!
In their most recent catalog they have this baby "for sale".....
@ $299 buckaroos!!
No thank you, I already have one!!!!!

in that order please.

the view from here.
"we make choices all day long that,
strung together,
culminate in the life we are living."
And lastly, my "entertainment cupboard."
The place where I keep all my goodies,
for when people come over and I want to make them feel *extra* special.
Did I mention that I have a thing for dishes, (that would include teacups)?
I would like to add to that list a thing for cloth napkins as well.

Tea is served.
Thanks for visiting today,
Come back again.....
"My Little Kitchen
God bless my little kitchen
I love its every nook
And bless me as I do my work
Wash pots and pans and cook.

And may the meals that I prepare
Be seasoned from above
With Thy great blessing
and Thy grace But most of all Thy love.

As we partake our earthly food
The table before us spread
We'll not forget to thank Thee,
Lord Who gives us daily bread.

So bless my little kitchen,
Lord And those who enter in
May they find naught but joy and peace
And happiness therein."