Home Again

A Look At Our Week 

Our first week back together was quite short lol! My mother had minor foot surgery to remove hardware from when she broke her foot about 2 or 3 years ago. I left on Tuesday evening to be there for her surgery on Wednesday and stay through the week to help with her recovery. She is recovering well, much better and quicker than expected! Not a surprise with her, she is determined!

We had decided Mom would try to teach me how to crochet while I was staying with her. That didn’t work out too well. I quickly learned that she definitely knows how to crochet, but is not able to tell someone else how to do it! I decided to stick to my YouTube videos and ask her questions when needed. We enjoyed our time together!

House Hunting Scene

We are still investigating and researching the land that neighbors our rental house. There are a few unanswered questions as far as exact acreage and property lines. I believe after my guy has finished this investigating he could be a real surveyor! The land is not perfect. It is not everything we have ever dreamed of. It is “in a bowl” as my guy says, a valley with everything raised up around you. We prefer being on the top of that valley but we will see where this investigation leads us!

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Hiking Adventures

I got my feet on the A.T. this week! We finally found time to go to Grayson Highlands State Park and hike with the wild ponies. It was a cloudy and foggy day so the views were not so great, but the ponies were outstanding! We also saw wild longhorn steer along our way.

On the way back from our hike, we met 2 couples that had stopped on the trail. They warned us that there was an animal blocking the trail ahead. You could see their fear. My guy explained that we had seen the longhorn on our way up the trail in about this same location. These hikers didn’t budge. The woman stated that whatever this animal was had “honked” at them?? The man had a small child strapped to his back, so my chivalrous guy volunteered to take the lead and investigate. I followed confidently behind him. Now, had it been a bear I’m not sure what we would have done! But it was the longhorn as we suspected, actually 2 of them this time. We could hear the man hiking down the trail behind us beating himself up all the way down the trail. “I stopped our hike for a cow. I was terrified of a cow. A cow.” It was funny.

I was able to keep up my walking routine during my stay at Mom’s and even enjoyed one evening walk with my sister. Although I’m not real sure about this power walk thing she does, it was nice to have the time to walk with her. I enjoyed wandering around on my own through the neighborhood as well and figuring out how to get back to Mom’s.

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Traveling Times

We are waiting for my son’s work schedule to plan our last moving trip to Danville for this upcoming week. The weather is not cooperating with our moving! Expected record highs this week! Oh well, we will start early and hopefully get it done quickly.

I had planned on going back to my Mom’s this week to help as well, but we have decided that help is not needed. She’s a tough one! So we will stay around here this week and might actually finally have our first full week of being here together.

My son has returned from his Graduation cruise with his godparents. I haven’t gotten the full report of his trip yet, but the parts I have heard about sound like it was a huge success with lots of fun times and new friends made.

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We have a fun overnight trip planned for today! We are going to Floyd, VA to listen to a band we enjoy that is playing there. Floyd is an awesome little town with live music playing on every street corner! I love it there.

What’s For Dinner?

Our diet’s have been going well recently. My guy dropped several pounds while he was alone this week. I apparently found those pounds he lost! My Mom attempted to quit smoking after her surgery, so I provided her with a bucket of hard candies & gum to help. That stuff is addictive and hard to pass on!

I had an awesome dinner of sweet and sour chicken over rice waiting for my guy when he returned home from his 2 weeks away at drum corps. And homemade pizzas and no bake chocolate peanut butter cookies (one of his faves) as well. I was able to use my new kitchen scarf my Mom had made for me and I loved it! having towels handy throughout the cooking and cleaning process was most helpful!

My niece had seen a picture I posted months ago of stuffed peppers I had made for dinner. She has requested that I make them for her ever since. I finally had the opportunity this week during Mom’s recovery. They were a big hit with the family!

Sappy Selfies

Here’s one from the A.T.! Time to get ready for Floyd! Have a great week! xoxoxo

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Hiking 101

A Look at Our Week 

Warning!!!! I’ve been by myself for a complete week with minimal human interaction, so I’ve got lots to talk about! Long post ahead!

I’ve survived my solo week! I may have had full conversations with the animals around here, and maybe even myself, but none the less I’ve survived! I cannot wait for my guy to come home tomorrow! Two weeks is a long time! I’ve second guessed our decision about me not going with him this time more than once this week and even checked into plane tickets at one time. But I have enjoyed my time and been very productive and he has been so busy and so beat by the end of the day that we would have had very little time together if I was there. I have filled my time by working on Cutler’s scrapbooks. I have completed 2010. (Don’t judge me, yes, I am a little behind but I will get it all done!) One benefit to being behind on scrapbooking is you realize which moments should really be treasured and spotlighted. Seeing all the pictures with my Dad and Cutler’s Granny has been an emotional trip down memory lane!

I have also been working again! I met my goal of earnings for the week and did lots of interesting jobs! And made some dollars along the way! I have focused on my diet and exercise this week and walked everyday! My diet has been good as well. I have lost a couple of pounds, not quite where I want to be but I feel like I’m back in control and heading in the right direction.

House Hunting Scene

The only news in this area is that one door is about to be closed. We have one more trip to make to Danville to finish emptying out my apartment and then we will be done there. As I left the apartment the other week and looked around at how clean and empty it is, I thought back to that first day there 5 1/2 years ago. I walked through that door with a mix of emotions. I was nervous and scared but excited, this was the first time I had ever lived by myself in my 39 years. It was very scary territory and full of changes but I was ready for it.

I am quite proud of the transformation that was made during those 5 1/2 years. Within the walls of that little 2 bedroom apartment I was able to finally find myself. Finally discover what things I enjoyed and what made me happy. See, I’m a people pleaser by nature. I live to make others happy. And that’s okay as long as you don’t lose sight of what makes you happy in the process. And I definitely had done that. I was once compared to a character in a movie who did not know how she liked her eggs cooked, she just always ordered them the same as whoever she was with. That was so me! For so long I did what others wanted me to do, or what others felt was the best for me. In the end I was incapable of making a decision for myself on my own.

Now, I won’t go into all the details of those 5 1/2 years of self discovery, but the person that is leaving that apartment is completely different from the one who moved in. I like to think those changes are for the better. I’m sure some would disagree. I’m sure there are some that would say I am still doing the same thing now and being who someone else thinks I should be or wants me to be. Only I know the truth though. I know how I feel and how I feel this is the first time I’ve ever been able to freely express my desires. I have no fear or worry of judgement. Yes, I do things that I have never done before. Some of the things I would never consider doing on my own. But to me that’s part of a relationship, sharing your desires and passions. I enjoy sharing a classical concert with my guy and seeing his passion for the music that I might not understand come out. My enjoyment comes through him. And it goes both ways! When I suggest going to a pop concert or Shakespeare in the Park, those are not things he would actively seek out, but he enjoys the time spent with me and my excitement.

I am a much stronger, more confident person now than I ever was before. I’ve learned many, many lessons along the way that I reflect back on often. I’ve learned to keep my circle small, that it’s quality that matters not so much quantity. And I’ve learned to push down all the negatives and always seek out the positives in situations. It can be hard to do at times, our world can be such a Debbie Downer at times, but focusing on those negatives only allows them to fester and grow. I choose happiness on a daily basis and love my life for it! With the encouragement and love of my guy I have finally learned to love myself. Oh, I as for my eggs, I like them in an omelet with cheese, peppers and onions. 🙂

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Hiking Adventures

As I said earlier, I walked everyday this week! Most of my walks were done on a riverwalk type trail here in town. It is a 2 mile trail round trip. I normally do about 3 miles in an hour, so I add a walk around the park onto this trail to take it up to 3 miles. I even increased it to 3 1/2 miles by the end of the week. The park is quaint, full of geese, and always full of some type of activity. It’s like those parks you see on T.V. or in movies where all the townspeople always gather and bring covered dishes. You know, one of those parks I’ve always wanted to live near!

 

One morning I did drive down to another trail that my guy and I have done before. It has more hills than the other trail does and I felt ready for the challenge. And it really wasn’t one! Yay! I’m getting back into it!

 

And then we come to today. This morning I woke up in a funk! Big time! I had made a weight loss goal for myself to meet by tomorrow. I had also challenged myself that if I met this goal by today I would deserve a treat. Well, of course I didn’t make it by today so I wallowed … No I wallered in my self-pity for a few minutes. Laying in bed with sore and aching legs from all of my walking this week and not the loss I was hoping for. The thought of getting back on the trail again this morning was just not there for me. Finally, I pushed all those negative feelings aside and decide that yes I would walk today. One minor setback was not worth losing my streak over. I decided to challenge myself even further by finding a real hiking trail to do today. I found one that was nearby and marked as “Easy”, just my style! I jumped out of bed and got ready with a little spring in my step. When I texted my guy to tell him I was going on a trail, I thought he might try to discourage me from going at it alone, but he was very encouraging and excited for me. I sent him the trail I had found and he said he thought we had done that one before. Well, that dampened my mood for just a second, but I was still excited to be going on my first real solo hike here.

I get to the trailhead with no problem. As soon as I step out of the car and realize I have no phone service I wonder if I will be able to find my way back home without GPS. But off I go, my pack on my back with my waters and my apple, I’m ready to see a waterfall. Now, my guy was right, we have hiked this trail before. I remember that the trail that leads to the fall is on the opposite side of the road from the parking lot so off I go! Now, most people were heading up the trail in the parking lot, but I felt super smart and informed and prepared that I knew where the falls were! The signage and instruction at this trailhead are very minimal.

 

I find my trailhead across the street and up I go. Up all those cement steps, ugh. I’m super confident though, I know it’s a popular trail that is bound to be clearly marked so I have no fears or hesitations as I journey my way up. Now, imagine my surprise when I end up right back where I started and I had not seen any water much less a waterfall. I begin to doubt my confidence and figure I may as well go across the street and see if all the people on that trail are seeing my waterfall. Up more stairs I go. I’m still feeling good. I’m convinced I’m going to find this waterfall if it kills me today. I climb all the way to the top of this trail and go across the big stone bridge that crosses the road. I can see the water. That’s a plus. But still no waterfall. This trail has several areas where you can go multiple directions. While deciding which ways to go, I remembered on the trail across the street that I had came to a fork in the road there as well and wonder if the falls were the other way. I had figured that all roads would lead to the same place, but maybe I was mistaken.

 

I make my way back down the trail and go back to my original trailhead. I look up that staircase and ask myself if I really want to do this again. But I am determined to find that waterfall. I hike it back up those stairs and end up back at the fork in the road. Last time I went left, this time I was going to try right. While standing there I thought to myself that a sign posted here sure would be nice, you know one saying Falls to the Right. Then I remember something. See, when I hike with my guy, he always navigates. I may be in front but he is telling me go left, go right etc. He talks to me along the way and tries to teach me things and answers all my questions. Apparently, I should listen more closely to him. Instead of looking for a sign, I start seeking out my blazes instead. I know my trail is a blue blaze trail. Now, in my defense, there was no blaze at the fork in the trail, but I did find one once I started down the trail to the right.

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I very quickly made it to the falls and I do think it was much heavier this time than the last time we hiked this trail. We have had lots of rain recently. I relished in my moment of reaching my desired destination, finally. I took my moment and enjoyed my apple while watching and listening to the falls. I have learned that there is just something about being out in the middle of nature that calms your spirit just a bit. I needed that today.

 

Animal Fun

This pasture was full of activity this week! I did not have to travel to find adventure, I kept seeming to find them in my own backyard. I am completely amazed and in awe of all the wildlife. And this is so unlike me, I’ve never been a real outdoorsy type person or anything like that, but to be able to watch these animals in their natural habitat is amazing! I love it!

We have a family of groundhogs that come out in the yard early in the morning or at dusk and play. I’ve seen 3 little babies and a big mama. There are also 2 bunnies that come out and play. I had to laugh the other night as I watched one bunny just run around and around in circles through the backyard. I am keeping my bird feeders full, and have plenty of beautiful birds to look at all day long. And a teeny tiny chipmunk who enjoys their seeds as well.

 

And then there’s the cows. I had major cow drama one evening and worried myself to death over these 24 cows! There is a garage/barn in their pasture that their owner keeps their grain in. The cows are not supposed to be able to go inside this barn. Well, one afternoon I was giving Smokey his daily carrot treat and I saw a cow walk out of the door to this barn. Then another walked out, then another, it was like a clown car. I counted 15 cows that walked out of the door. I wasn’t sure how they got in there, and was trying to do a head count to make sure that they were all out. Counting cows is as difficult as counting kids!

Later that evening I went back out to check on things again. I could hear the cows in the barn again. I wasn’t sure if they could get to their grain, but figured that would be what kept causing them to go in there. So I’m imagining these cows just eating grain til they explode or something. I was also worried that they’d get hurt on something in the barn or would get stuck in there and not be able to get back out. Now, I said I’m not an outdoorsy girl, I’m taking baby steps here. My mom suggested I go in the barn and pat them on the butt to get them out and then nail the door shut. I wasn’t ready for steps that big just yet. Instead I texted our landlord and asked her to let her grandson know what was going on. While I waited for a reply, I knocked on the walls of the barn attempting to scare the cows out. They didn’t budge. I would go inside and come right back out to see if they were still there.

I finally sat down to my dinner at 8:00. I couldn’t eat inside, I instead chose to eat on the back deck so that I could do a head count as the cows heading up the pasture. I was never convinced that all the cows were accounted for when I finally went inside. The cow guy came the next day to check on them and let me know they couldn’t hurt anything in the barn. He did fix the door so they couldn’t get back in again. He laughed when I told him how worried I had been about them.

 

I really thought moving to the country was going to take me away from drama! But I guess I’ll take my cow drama over the alternative!

Sappy Solo Selfies

 

Thanks for reading my ramblings! My guy comes home tomorrow!!!! We made it! Have a great week!!! XOXO

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun!

A Look at Our Week

My first week without my guy went by rather quickly. Lots of activity to keep my mind busy and to keep my emotions in check. It’s always hard when he leaves every summer. It’s a huge culture shock for me. I go from being his main priority to dropping way down on the list rather quickly as 100 other people jump ahead of me. He’s busy and he’s focused on his work, so I plan projects to keep myself busy as well. He left on Sunday after all of our graduation festivities had ended and I came back to Mountain City. It’s been a great trial run seeing how I handle myself here all alone. So far so good.

I have been filling my time by reading some of my new books and working on my scrapbooks again! I will admit I am 8 years behind on Cutler’s books and I am okay with that! I will catch up! Once I complete his books I will start on my traveling books!

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House Hunting Scene

Not too much news to report here! I have just learned today that the neighboring land to the house we are renting is now for sale. It is a portion of this families farm that was willed to the brother’s wife. The price is a little out of range, but we are in love with this area. And I wouldn’t have to say good-bye to my cows and horse! 

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Hiking Adventures

I am getting back on track with my diet and exercise. I am always able to focus a little better whenever my guy is away. Tempting nights out are not quite as tempting when you are solo! While I was in Danville I visited the Riverwalk Trail for one last walk before I leave for good. Always so much pretty scenery to look at on the trail.

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I have found a new trail I like in Mountain City. The Goose Creek Trail. It is only 2 miles long, and I usually do about 3 miles. So, I take a lap or two around the park after completing the trail to add to my time and distance. I have walked everyday this week! My groove is coming back!

Traveling Times

I went back to Danville on Tuesday to run errands with Cutler and help prepare for his cruise he is taking with his godparents. We had “big boy” errands to run. Opening a savings account, titling his car in his name, changing his address, writing thank you notes and car maintenance. He also had to take a trip to Greensboro, N.C. for a trip to the  Apple store for a phone issue he was having. I attempted to convince him to let me take him but he was set on going on his own. Just another sign that he is indeed growing up on me.

While he was away I worked on taking more items from the apartment to storage and cleaning our apartment. We have one more trip to take to get the last few loads that are going to storage or to my son’s house and then we will be done with our Danville dwelling. We have until July 1st to be out of the apartment, so we have another Danville trip on the calendar once my guy gets home. I came back to Mountain City on Wednesday and prepared for my sister and nieces who were coming to visit for the weekend.

I do not have daughters, but my nieces are close enough to it for me. I love these two as if they were my own. I am so proud of the young women they are becoming! My sister and I had planned a trip to an event in a nearby town, Land of Oz. Now, Wizard of Oz is my absolute, all time favorite movie and I passed that on to my oldest niece. When she was younger she believed she actually was Dorothy Gale and would tell everyone that. The trip was a surprise for her 20th birthday and the girls had no idea they were coming to my house. Just a surprise girl’s trip is all they were told. And they were funny! They didn’t know what to pack, and were too excited to sleep on the 3 hour trip. I got a message from the youngest niece when they were about 30 min away with a video of the scenery. She said, “Where in the world am I?” I was thrilled that they were still excited when they realized they were coming here! There only disappointment was that there was no pool at this hotel.

These city girls loved the cows and horse and loved feeding the horse, Smokey carrots. He is finally getting used to me and will now come up to the fence anytime I go outside! I’m going to have to start growing carrots soon!

On Friday we were off on another surprise trip.  They kept reading signs trying to figure out where they may be going. It was too cute to hear my soon to be 20 year old niece squeal with delight when she saw the first Land of Oz sign! Our day at the park was wonderful and everything we expected! My oldest niece was chosen to be Glinda the Good Witch in the show and did an awesome job! It was a fun day in OZ! I am already planning my next trip!

What’s For Dinner? 

Ummm … frozen dinners for one?!? I miss cooking! But cooking for one is never fun! I am using this time to focus on my diet and get myself back on track. I did stop on the way home on Wednesday at one of my favorite restaurants, Jason’s Deli. They have a fabulous salad bar!

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Sappy Selfies

Here are a few selfies from our Girl’s Weekend! Had such a great time with my girls! Y’all come back soon! ❤

 

Have a great week! XOXO

An ending & A beginning

A Look at Our Week 

It’s been a whirlwind, emotional roller coaster kind of week full of celebrations! Our 3 year plan has always been to get through my son’s graduation and then we would move out of Danville. This week my son graduated and our move will be complete in the next few weeks! Cutler has decided to stay in Danville with his Dad for now. He will continue working and hopefully decide on his path very soon.

Oh how I hate when the big red bag gets pulled out from the back of the closet. This big red bag only means one thing! It’s time for summer tour to begin, which means my guy will be leaving! We both left Danville on Sunday and went our separate ways, me back to Mountain City and him to Indiana for move ins. This is always his longest trip for the summer. Two weeks this time! Now I normally do go with him for at least one of those weeks, and it seems funny that this year with no job to report to, we have decided for me to stay home! But we have been so incredibly busy recently! I have more on my calendar for this upcoming week with another trip back to Danville and I am really looking forward to having nothing to do next week! We have left it with if we miss each other too much we can always work out a spur of the moment trip, so we shall see!

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The House Hunting Scene

We went out to look at one lot of land this week. It was a 40 acre lot and was in a nice location. Our only issue was with the layout of the land. All of the roadside land was basically straight down a cliff, so working out a driveway and making a path to the house would have been incredibly difficult. My mom asked me this weekend if I thought we’d ever find a place. I had to laugh. I’m sure to some we must appear to be the pickiest home buyer/land buyers ever. We are very cautious and know exactly what we want and we will know it once we find it. And we are patient enough to wait it out! My biggest fear is jumping on something and then the next month something becoming available that will make us regret our decision. So we continue waiting and looking!

Hiking Adventures

On one of our only days in Mountain City this week, we decided to head to the Laurel Falls trail. It had rained for several days prior and my guy was excited to see the falls after several good rainfalls. I am all about being prepared these days so I try to learn how long and what kind of trail we will be doing beforehand. My guy looked through his map and described a 1.7 mile hike to the falls and back, so 3.4 miles total trip. “We will go down a staircase and practically be there.” Sounds great! I decided to wear my new rain boots for this hike. It ended up being a very good decision! The trail was very muddy in some places and lots of deep puddles.

And long … The trail was very long! We went right down that staircase no problem, but no falls in sight just yet. So we continued walking along the trail. And walking and walking and climbing and climbing. During one of my rest stops I expressed my concern that we were going uphill. (I can hike on flat ground for days, the hills are killer though.) I imagined a hike to the falls being mainly downhill on the way there. He assumed we would be hiking up to the top of the falls and then going down once we got there. During another rest stop (There are usually many when going uphill.) we met a group of young hikers coming down. We were at a fork in the trail so my guy asked which route we should take to get to the falls. They looked at me, laying on my rock, face red, guzzling my water, panting and said, “Oh definitely this way, the other way is really muddy and you don’t want to have to go up the stairs we came down. Go up this way and then back down this way too.” Awesome! Great advice. Off we went.

This part of the trail was really tough! Lots of stairs and up hills. But at least I can hear the falls now. There is a steep rock staircase that we must go down to see the falls. Of course I slip and fall on these stairs and immediately state “I’m okay.” so that my guy will stop beating himself up for bringing me on this hike. He normally likes to take me on hikes that he is very familiar with. He likes knowing exactly how difficult it will be and I like knowing how much longer we have. When he doesn’t have this knowledge he worries about me to the extreme. I enjoy our hikes. I always love the end result, whatever the pretty things are I get to see along the way and how great and accomplished I feel when I complete it. During the hike (especially uphill) I may appear to be hating it, but it’s all part of the process and I know I just have to keep challenging and pushing myself to get that awesome feeling at the end.

So finally, we make it to the falls. Well worth the walk! They were beautiful and fully loaded from the rain. After getting our pics and enjoying the view for awhile I state that I’m not going back up the stairs I just came down. We decide to ignore the young hikers advice and go on the lower trail. I got this. We pass another group of young hikers on our way and we both notice they kind of smirk as we walk by. We quickly learned why. Ahead on the trail we see a rock wall with a narrow rock path bordering the water. With the water being so high the trail is even more difficult. My first worry is that my rain boots will be slippery on the rocks. My guy tucks his cell phone into a safe pocket. He checks in to make sure I’m still okay with this path to which I decide scaling a rock wall is much better than climbing up stairs again. So off we go, and it was no problem at all to get across!

Now by this time, my rain boots and all the rocks I’m walking on have done a number on my feet. And I’m feeling horribly out of shape (which I am but it still felt bad to realize it). We finally make it back to the trailhead and the car. I declare ice cream is in order. Well, of course we are in the middle of nowhere USA and there is no ice cream parlor to be found. After several miles and towns we do come across a little country store that’s opened. I’m way too tired to venture out so my guy goes in. And stays forever! When he finally comes out 20 minutes later, he’s with the cashier and says “Good-bye Connie!” as he gets back in the car. He not only knows her name but where she lives as well. I love the South!

Once we make it back home my guy studies the trail maps a little harder and learns we actually hiked a little over 5 miles instead of 3.4. Whew! Now I feel so much better about how beat I am! At least it was from a 5 miler and not a 3 miler!

Traveling Times

On Tuesday my youngest niece graduated from high school. We traveled to Oliver Springs to take part of the festivities. She attends a small high school and had a graduating class of about 66. She will be attending the community college in the fall and then transfer to a four year college to major in Nursing. We are so proud of our beautiful girl!

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Thursday another trip to Danville was on the calendar! It was time to prepare for my baby boy’s high school graduation! His school is much larger with a graduating class of over 200. My family came to town to help celebrate his special day! His graduation was on Friday night, but unfortunately we were only allowed 6 tickets to the ceremony. My mom and I went, Cutler’s dad and his sister and Cutler’s godparents.

The ceremony was sad in my opinion. This class had lost 2 students this year. One had just passed away the Monday before graduation. Their seats were marked with their caps and gowns and flowers. I watched her closest friends faces as their names were called to walk across the stage. They smiled for the camera as they shook hands and took their diplomas, but then as they walked down the other side of the stage and back to their seats, you could see the sadness creeping back onto their faces. So sad for this group of young people. My son knew this girl but was not a close friend, but several of his close friends were very close with her. At the beginning of the week when we learned the news I was only thinking about exam scores, final grades and graduation requirements. It forced me to stop in my tracks and just be grateful and thankful that I had my son here with me. Numbers and expectations didn’t seem to matter quite as much after that news came out. I’m happy that these kids were able to push past their broken hearts and enjoy their special moment!

And then it really happened, they really did indeed call out my boy’s name to graduate! And we followed all the rules and they actually gave him his diploma! What a challenge it is getting a boy that hated school to graduation! But we made it! Now it was time to celebrate! We had a party for Cutler & my niece on Saturday night and it was wonderful! So happy my family was able to be here! We were all here except for my brother-in-law who was home dog-sitting.

What’s For Dinner? 

LOL! We weren’t home long enough for many dinners! But I did manage to try out a new recipe for a homemade taco meat in the crockpot. It was definitely a winner with my guy! And easy as can be! ❤

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Sappy Selfies

Here are a couple from our FIVE mile hike! ❤ #14DaysTilWeAreTogetherAgain

Have a great week! XOXO

Busy Bees

Look At Our Week:

Another busy week is over and done! We have joked all week about just how busy we have been since my retirement. We often find ourselves discovering just how little time we have had. We have a list of things to do that we just can’t seem to find the time for. No end in sight just yet but hopefully soon! I look forward to doing nothing at some point!

The highlight of the week was celebrating my sons 18th birthday. I’ve always been told how quickly your children grow up and I’ve often warned parents of this, but it truly does happen so quickly! I can remember his younger years so clearly and it seems as if they just took place yesterday.

The House Hunting Scene

It was a quiet week as far as new houses and land is concerned! We do have one lot we are planning to check out tomorrow, but nothing very promising yet. I have found a new theme song for our house hunt! Our position throughout this move has been that we are in no hurry, we have a wonderful place to live until we find exactly what we are looking for so we are set to wait it out and should never feel pressured to settle for less than exactly what we want. We will live in this house for the rest of our lives so it best be a good one! Here is the link to my song, I find myself playing it when the hunt starts getting me down!

While we were in Danville we did pack up two more loads from the apartment and should be completely done there by mid June.

Hiking Adventures

I did it! I took my guy on the trail I solo hiked and finally made it to the top of our ridge and hiked along the upper trail! One rainy afternoon we both wanted to walk, so during a break in the rain we decided to walk up our street. Whoa! It was all uphill!! Hills & I do not get along very well. I made it about halfway to the end of the road before sending my guy on his own. And wow, I felt those hills in my legs and booty for at least 3 days! Once our 2 week rainy streak ends we are planning on getting on the AT trails around our house!

Our best hiking adventure this week was traveling to Trail Days in Damascus, VA. We had a wonderful the time and had lots of festival foods! We listened to a presentation by the woman who holds the woman’s record for completing the AT and also has held an overall record. She was amazing and so inspiring! For about 2 seconds of her talk I was ready to get me a pack and head out on the trail myself! But I think I better stick to my short day hikes for now! We love the Hiker’s Parade that is a part of Trail Days and includes hikers that have completed or are working on completing the AT. We also spread a little Trail Magic by giving a hiker a ride from Trail Days back to his point on the trail.

Traveling Times

One of the many perks of our move: I was able to spend Mother’s Day with my family in Oliver Springs, TN. It was a great day! Manis and pedis with mom and my youngest niece then my niece and I prepared a steak dinner for our family.  It was great catching up and spending time with everyone! That night we had girls night with my sister and 2 nieces and watched home movies! The next day was lunch out before I headed back home! I love that I am able to see my family so easily now! A one day trip can even be done now!

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What’s For Dinner?

I’ve had this one on my to cook list for awhile and finally got to it! Cornish Hens cooked in the crockpot. They were delicious, although a little bit of work was required to eat them and remove the bones! Served with corn on the cob and squash and zucchini with onions!

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Sappy Selfies

Here are a couple from our time at Trail Days! Can’

t wait for next year!

Have a great week!! XOXO

Solo Hiker

A Look at Our Week

It’s been a wonderful week! My Monday morning started off perfectly! I enjoyed my breakfast and book outside on my deck with my gorgeous view and cows and horse surrounding me! It was bliss! Everything I ever imagined it would be.

And yes, a book! I read a book! Years ago I was an avid reader. I was known to show up to work with no sleep due to getting into a book and not being able to put it down so I sat up all night reading! Then life happened! It became harder to be able to lose myself in a book. My brain and life had too much happening and I wasn’t able to give reading the concentration it needed. I would try and find myself either reading the same paragraph over and over again or reading a whole chapter and having no recollection of anything I had just read. I have missed reading! I have missed my books! While we were in New York we had lunch with some of my guy’s friends. The wife is an author and her son had written a book with her. I felt it would be a good step back into reading to see how it went now.

And it went very well! I loved the book and finished it in two days! The book tells of the faith of their child and how it has developed over the years as he has grown and faced challenges. The child attended Sandy Hook Elementary and was in third grade when the shooting occurred. It’s a beautiful story! I have her novel to read next.

I have read on my transcription forum that several of the people work from their recliners. This idea has intrigued me. When I first started working I struggled with comfort. I had to add an additional keyboard, raise my laptop and find a comfortable chair to keep my back and neck from hurting from all the sitting. Well today I worked from the recliner and it worked! And if you have to do work, let me tell you, this is the way to get it done!

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The House Hunting Scene

Our latest updates are not looking too good! The land we had made an offer for and proposed moving the property lines came back with a no. Now keep in mind, both lots in this scenario are for sale! Our theory is that the owner does not want to give us the extra acreage because it will take the most easiest building spot from the second lot. So the search continues! And we are settling in at the rental house and feel no rush to leave here.

We have moved two car loads of our belongings here and our temporary home is feeling pretty good! We remain positive about our search and are confident that we will find land or a house soon!

Hiking Adventures

Okay, finally the long awaited solo hiking details. On Monday my guy and I headed up to the top of the big hill in our back pasture again. I had devised a plan that I thought would bring me to the top of the hill without doing the huge hill my guy had done before. We started up to the cemetery, which I had done previously. Hills are tough for me! And these just keep going up and up! We made it to the top of the first hill and the path appeared to continue going nowhere but up. I stopped and inquired about how high we were going to have to go. He points way high through the trees to the ridge he is going to. I shake my head and say, “Nope, I’m out.” I encourage him to continue his trek, and he shows me what he will do and that it should take him about an hour. So I head back down the hill.

Once I get to the bottom of the hill and rest for awhile, without the cows interfering this time, my energy level builds back up. I size up the hill across the creek and decide I can make it up that way. I climb to the top and now I am at the end of the trail that I think my guy is going to be coming down. I sit in the grass at the fence gate for a few minutes, but see no sign of him. I don’t think enough time has passed for him to be this close to completing the trail yet, so I decide to walk down the trail towards him, hoping to meet up with him. I’m imagining his look of delight and surprise when he sees me walking towards him. I continue walking on the trail, pushing briar bushes out of my way, feeling proud of myself for going out on my own. I’m a hiker!

At some point, I realize that my trail is much lower than the ridge trail where my guy is walking. I keep looking up at his trail, hoping to catch a glimpse of him walking, but I see nothing, but I am still determined to keep going forward. I get to the end of the trail and I’m in another valley, or I guess as they say around here, holler. I’m confused because I assumed I would have ended up on the same trail that was at the top of the pasture hill. To my left, towards our house is a big hill. I’m assuming it’s the same hill I’ve watched my guy climb up. My thoughts are if I can make it to the top of that hill I will be at the far end of our pasture. And a hero, a real hiker girl. I can do this I keep telling myself. I walk towards the hill and stop to rest and think out my game plan.

I check the time and realize I am right at the hour point that my guy should be finishing his hike. I look up at the hill again and assess that it could take me another hour just to make it to the top of that hill. We have no cell service, so I have no way of contacting my guy to say, “I’m okay, don’t worry.” And I know if he finishes his hike and cannot find me that he will be worried, so I decide to head back on the trail I had just came down on. Again somehow, I end up a level higher than when I came in. So now I’m walking on the slant of the hill and fighting briar bushes as I go. A few foot slips here and there but I manage well. I come out at  a completely different point than when I started. I look out across the pasture and off in the distance I spot my guy opening the fence to the cow pasture. Oh good I think, he is just finishing his hike and just beginning to look for me.

As soon as he closes the gate he takes off running across the pasture. “Oops!”, I think. I guess he’s been looking for me after all. I yell out his name, not sure he will even be able to hear me since I am so far away. He immediately turns his head towards me and throws both hands up into the air. I can hear his voice traveling across the field, “You’re in trouble!” As I make my way down the hill and towards him I watch as he recovers from his brief adrenaline rush. Once we meet up I learn that he arrived home and when he didn’t see me assumed I as napping. After looking through the entire house and all the way around the house, he assumed I must have fallen coming back down the hill when I left him and was dying in the cow pasture. Needless to say, I am forbidden to hike solo without him knowing  in the future! We have plans to do my trail again tomorrow and see where that big hill leads, together.

Traveling Times

I traveled back to Danville on Tuesday morning so I could take Cutler to court from his wreck on Wednesday morning. Everything with court went really well. Hopeful that a lesson was learned!

I worked on packing up the apartment and packed a load to bring to Mountain City. The apartment is looking quite empty! We are getting rid of most of our furniture and putting the rest in our storage units until our permanent move.

Next trip is scheduled for Sunday! I will be traveling to Clinton to spend the day with my Mom! Pedicures, movies and a family cookout are planned.

 

What’s For Dinner

One of our favorite meals! Sausage with peppers and onions! We could eat this everyday! So yummy! I can’t wait until I can use peppers from my garden!

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Sappy Selfies

We were apart for part of the week, so our selfie is from tonight’s Yahtzee game!

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And We Wait…

A Look at Our Week

Ahhh finally I do believe things have settled down just a tiny bit! May is a very busy month for us though! Many more busy days ahead!

Cutler’s dad has improved greatly! He is now at home and recovering very well. Cutler is staying with him for now and keeping a close watch on him!

Most of our week was spent in Danville due to orchestra rehearsal, orchestra concert and keeping check on Cutler’s dog while his dad was in the hospital. We also did a lot of packing and added another load to our storage unit and brought another load with us to Mountains City.

We have been visiting our favorite Danville restaurant as much as possible! I tried a new drink this week! A strawberry mule! Very good!

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The House Hunting Scene

It was a week of waiting! And we are still waiting! I came to Mountains City Monday morning to view the two lots of land my guy had seen with our realtor on Friday. I was excited to see the lots because of his excitement! I knew it had to be something good! And it did not disappoint.

The first lot we visited we had seen before. When we first approached our realtor about land he mentioned this lot. He told us it was the best view in the county. But it wasn’t for sale! He promised to try to get in touch with the owner and see if he was ready to sell the lot. It was kind of one of those too good to be true kind of situations. Find a lot, fall in love with it and then try to convince the owner to sale. We didn’t give the prospect much hope! But the realtor finally heard back from the owner and they were willing to sale! Now upon viewing the lot we realized it was not perfect. The view, the view is absolutely perfect! 360 mountainous views every where you look! Exactly what we dreamed of! But, it is only 1 acre, we had hoped for more. And it is technically in a subdivision, although lots are well spaced out, and that was a big no on our list! But that view…

We visited the next lot and wow! This one is 3 1/2 acres and in the middle of nowhere! Definitely more what we were looking for! The view is awesome! Not quite 360, and not quite as amazing as the first lot, but it could work! Had the first lot not been available we would have been jumping at his lot! Time for a decision … which lot are we going to make an offer on?!  I don’t make decisions well so I quickly decided we needed to talk it out over lunch! Off to Lois’ Country’s Cafe, our favorite local place!

We knew either lot would work very well for us. After lunch we went back to the first lot again. Standing on that hill looking at the view that would be from our great room windows I said, “We have to go with this one first. It became available when we wanted it to. It’s a sign. Make the offer.” And he did! And we were ready to run right down to the realtors office and sign the papers and start digging on our land right then and there. Umm…apparently it doesn’t work like that! So we waited…

Days passed and the realtor finally called with the owners counter offer. (Keep in mind we had offered what the realtor had said was asking price!) We learned there had been some miscommunication between the realtor and owner as far as the asking price. Our original offer was already more than the second property and for only 1 acre! So we were not willing to go any higher. Must not have been meant to be… next!

We made an offer on the second lot, but added another  1 1/2 acres by suggesting a move of the property line to square off the lot and allow us to build on the highest point. The added on acreage is owned by the same owner. We expected this one to come with a wait since it would have to be approved by the county to move the line. And the wait continues! We heard from our realtor today that the owners are still thinking it over and will have an answer tomorrow. Not having an immediate no sounds like good news to me!

Hiking Adventures

We did several hikes on the mountain bike trails in Danville this week. The woods are getting more green with each hike! The mountain laurel is budded and ready to bloom!

We plan on hiking up to the top of the cow pasture again tomorrow. I’m gonna attempt to make it up to the top via the smaller hill. My goal is to do that big hill before we move from here!

Traveling Times

We spent the afternoon in Greensboro, N.C. today. My guy has trombone quartet time with his guys and I had shopping time! Came home with one new shirt and a fixed phone camera! I call that a win! Thank you Apple store!

My guy has moved himself to Mountain City! I will be here when I can, but will make several trips back to Danville for Cutler activities! His court date from his wreck is Wednesday so I will be back for that and then back the next week in time for his 18th birthday!  So hard to believe! I will also be attending the Graduation Program at my former Preschool. I promised my kids I would come watch! I’ve made several visits by there since I retired and stocked up on my hugs and love!

Sappy Selfies

My pictures will be back next week!

Here’s our selfie from our last orchestra concert!

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How Quickly Things Change

A Look at Our Week 

Parenting is hard. The hardest job I have ever done. There are so many uncontrollable, outside forces that can impact your child(ren). As a mother, having to stand by and watch as your child is hurting and not be able to heal that hurt is almost unbearable. Cutler’s dad has been in ICU for the past week with a brain injury from a fall last weekend. He had emergency brain surgery last Saturday night and is making incredible progress. My focus for this past week has been Cutler and helping him to process these events and stay focused on school and his job. At times I have been very proud of his maturity in handling situations, other times there have been pushes of the limits and boundaries. All very expected in this situation. We will all make it through this!

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The House Hunting Scene

Our original plans were to return to Mountain City on Friday to look at several more lots and a new house on the market. Also, we were hoping to meet with a contractor and show them our house plans to begin getting estimates to build. We were checking out local banks to begin working on establishing residency as well. As much as the two of us hate being apart, I felt I needed to stay here to be with Cutler this weekend. I did not want our progress to come to a halt either though, so my guy ventured out on a solo Mountain City trip to handle our planned business, and to hike, there will be lots and lots of hiking I am sure and some trombone playing for the cows. I am planning on going Monday morning to be there for the contractor meeting as long as all is well here.

Being apart during this has proven to be very difficult! He texts and leaves messages and I can hear his excitement about the land and house he is seeing, but feel so separated from it all here at home. We have two lots that he is very excited to show me! Can’t wait to get there and see it all for myself!

Hiking Adventures

We did manage to fit a couple of hikes into our crazy week somehow. Our trails seem to get greener each time we walk. They have been wet and muddy this week, forecast is showing five days of beautiful sunshine though! Can’t wait! And what a surprise to step on the scale this morning and see I have somehow managed to lose a couple of pounds through all of this! The stress eating has been on high!

Traveling Times

No big trips scheduled for our near future. Summer is approaching and my guy will be back and forth working and I will be getting us all settled in Mountain City. Our next big adventure is a week of graduation celebrations the end of May! My niece and (hopefully!) my son will be graduating from high school. Boys that hate school are just hard! We will be going to celebrate with my niece in Tennessee then that weekend we will have Cutler’s graduation and party. The craft game has been pretty strong around here preparing party decorations!

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I will be traveling back and forth to Roanoke with Cutler so he can visit his Dad as much as possible. The progress he has made so quickly is quite amazing. Hoping he continues to improve and realizes just how lucky he is to have been given this second chance.

Sappy Selfies

A broken phone camera has really hurt our selfie game this week! Who knew how much we depended on those things! This selfie showed up in my Facebook memories Friday. Our first publicly posted selfie from 2014! Neither of us have stopped smiling since! ❤

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Have a great week! xoxoxo

NYC Recap

A Look at Our Week

What a whirlwind we are still on! Our NYC trip was amazing and I have not been able to find 10 minutes to write a blog describing our experience since we arrived home! Time to stop for a few and catch everyone up. There are a lot of pictures to share so beware!

The week home after a vacation is typically bad. Not quite strong enough to explain my week, more on that at a later time for now I choose to reflect back on what a great trip last week was. Life can change so very quickly hold onto those good times and memories!

The House Hunting Scene

We came home from NYC on Monday, my guy had orchestra rehearsal on Tuesday, so first thing Wednesday morning we were up and headed to Mountain City until Friday. It was a wonderful trip. Everything we expected it to be.

The house is fine, lots of things to get used to though! For one, the oven is a Jenn-Air convection oven. So different from a regular oven. It has a bar that locks the oven for cleaning. I did not realize this until our second day there. The first night it took forever to cook our pork tenderloin. We were googling convection ovens and learning that they were supposed to cut cook times way down. Not the case for this raw tenderloin. Finally it was cooked enough to eat. On the menu for the next night was chicken. I preheated the oven and was very skeptical about how the performance would be. After a while the light went off which usually means the desired temperature has been reached. I opened the oven and nothing. It wasn’t even slightly warm. I start talking to myself which alerts my guy that we have issues he needs to solve. He jumps up and comes running. Now, remember I didn’t realize that the lock bar was for cleaning only. I assumed since the oven ran on air that it needed to be sealed to keep the air in and that was the purpose for the lock. So while my guy grumbled and started googling on his phone and looking for model numbers on the oven, I closed the door and did not lock it. I checked it in a few minutes and it was hot! I said, “Ohhh, I think when I lock it that it turns the stove off.” He looks through the owners manual he has found online and it indeed says to lock the oven when cleaning. Now, in my defense, it never says don’t lock it any other time. So, the first night our tenderloin only cooked when I didn’t have the lock on which was basically when i would open the door to check on it. After not locking the oven, our chicken did indeed cook much faster and was much juicier. I may end up liking this oven after all.

We also were able to finish one of our larger puzzles that would not fit on our small table.

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Hiking Adventures

We have had only a few hikes on our local trails recently with all of our travels. The other day we went out and the greenery and blooms of Spring are starting to show finally! Most of our hiking during this time was done in the concrete jungle of NYC. My Fitbit showed 25,000 steps each day for 2 days!!! No wonder my legs and feet were hurting!

At the Mountain City house our quest was to hike up to the top of the big hill at the end of the cow pasture. We were both excited to get started on it Friday morning. Once we crossed over into the pasture, the horse ran up to meet us and followed us along our trail for a little bit. We walked across the pasture which had a gradual incline. It was rough! My legs were still tired and sore from all that walking in NYC! I looked up at that big, huge, mountainous hill lurking at the end of the path and quickly surrendered. I told my guy to have at it! I would be waiting down here at the bottom with my new friend, the horse. Off he went with a little jump in his step. I sat down in the field for a few to rest. I then noticed there was a smaller hill to the side of the pasture that lead up to the same level. I began up the hill with the horse following behind me. During one of my breaks I notice the cows are all up at the top of the hill to the right. Then my guy spots me from the top and yells down, “Hello.” This spooks the cows and sends them running down the hill. Well, friends of ours had commented how funny cows were when they ran, and they really are, so I was excited and grabbed my phone to try and get a video. Before I could click record though, I realized the cows were running right at me. Then they all stopped standing in a semi circle in front of me. Staring, glaring, not taking there eyes off of me. Now, I’m wearing my bright red hoodie, and I always thought the don’t wear red was an old wive’s tale, but just in case I start looking through the crowd to see if I can spot a bull. I look up the hill where my guy was, but he was off walking again and oblivious to my dilemma. So, I’m considering what my plan of action should be, and the cows are still staring, not moving. Finally, I hear my guy again and yell up to him alerting him to the fact that I’m surrounded. He yells at me to take off my hoodie. So I slowly begin emptying out my pockets, keeping my eyes on the cows at all time. Then the horse, who is still behind me snorts really loud. The cows look away from me and slowly begin walking off. The horse herds them all down the hill and across the creek. The horse is my new hero! He saved me!

Traveling Times

Our trip to New York City was outstanding! We packed so much activity (and walking) (and food) into a short period of time! Upon arriving Thursday morning we headed to Times Square. We had tickets to see Phantom of the Opera Thursday night. I loved the Broadway area. It was one of my favorite areas that we visited. The show was incredible. I definitely have caught the bug and cannot wait for my next show. I entered ticket lotteries all week to try to grab more tickets, but no luck! After the show we walked down to Time Square again to see it during the night. So big and bright!

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Friday we set out to check as many things off of my “Gotta see in NYC list” as we possibly could! We started in Lower Manhattan. A friend of ours had given us a list of highlights of each area of the city and we followed her recommendations. Our first stop was Ground Zero. Very emotional to be there. My mind kept going back to what it must have been like on 9/11 to be there. Across the street is a firehouse with a bronze wall depicting scenes from that day and a list of firefighter’s who lost their lives. You hear the numbers on the news and it sounds bad, but something about seeing the names and pictures of each one, the magnitude of it just kind of hits you. We ventured on through the financial district next checking out Wall Street. I recently made my first stock purchase and was impressed to see my money at work! We saw the Brooklyn Bridge and Statue of Liberty from afar and even the Ghostbusters firehouse. That evening we went to a big band jazz show at Birdland. After the show we walked around and checked a few more stops off our must see list: Carnegie Hall, Radio City Music Hall, Empire State Building (which I actually only wanted to see from afar, and we did later, so I was disappointed to walk up to the door and not be able to see the top of the building. I’m not a huge fan of heights so I was fine with not going to the top, and my guy was completely fine with not paying the $74 to get us both to the top. Helpful hint: if you need a phone charge, head to Macy’s! We ended our night with a trip to Junior’s Cheesecake for a delicious dessert!

Saturday we slept in just a little before heading out for more site seeing. We then headed to the High Line and enjoyed the views along the trail. Central Park was the next have to see place. We opted for one of the carriage rides through the park and it was very enjoyable! It was one of the prettiest and first warm day of the year so the park was full of people. So much to see! We walked through the city through Rockefeller Center and down 5th Avenue and even popped into Trump Tower. We were in search of ice cream and were quite disappointed to learn it was closed. We had played with the idea of going to another jazz club later that night, but quickly opted for an early night at the hotel instead. It was much needed,

Sunday was a much slower day! We had plans to meet some friends on the Upper West Side for lunch. We went to the Museum of Natural History before lunch and began our walk through. Lunch was great and the family we shared it with were awesome! They used to live in the neighborhood and were very familiar with the area. They talked about seeing John Kennedy, Jr rollerblading through Central Park and Bruce Springsteen performing for a music award show from the museum. After lunch we headed back to finish our tour of the museum. Loved seeing those dinosaurs! At this point, we were done! We headed back to our hotel for a nap before having dinner at our hotel restaurant.

We had planned a boat tour for Monday morning before we left, but high winds and cold changed our plans. Instead we headed to a different area of the city to see Julliard and The Met before heading to the airport to fly home. The main highlight of our trip was most definitely the food! I had several must try foods on my list and managed to check almost most of them off! Bagels, hot dogs from a street vendor, New York Style Pizza, New York Cheesecake, danish from Carlo’s Bakery and dumplings. Yum! ! The bagels had to be the most favorite. I will most definitely be going back to visit NYC again. Much simpler trip next time: Broadway show and a good dinner followed up with a bagel the next morning.

Sappy Selfies

One of my favortie selfies of the trip is from the bus from our hotel to the city. Yay for public transportation!

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The weeks are flying by!

A Look at Our Week 

Things are beginning to look up this week! It is impossible to describe how busy we are everyday it seems! We were talking during a hike the other day about how quickly the first month of my retirement has passed. I make a list (I’m a huge list maker!) of things to do each week and have yet to see the list completed! It took me 3 days to post my son’s senior pics on Facebook! I normally would have had that done in 1 day top if not the night we took them! Priorities seem to be changing as well! All for the good! Scrolling through my Facebook news feed is no longer the first thing I think of doing when I sit down at the computer. And the break from the never-ending drama has been welcomed!

We have done much better with our not eating out strategy! I cooked several nights this week, our only opportunities to eat out were during our traveling day on Thursday, and we tried eating sensibly, and then of course we had to visit our favorite place in town on Saturday to celebrate National Beer Day! He celebrated with a beer, I chose Dreamsicle mini bundt cake instead! It was yummy-licious! I’m down 5 pounds for the week. Hoping to get as close as possible to losing 5 more before we leave Thursday!

The House Hunting Scene

We were back in Mountain City, TN this week and have rented our house there. We met with the sweet lady who had recently lost her mother that I wrote about last week. She was a joy! And full of stories about the house and land (she had grown up in the house and the family owns a 30 acre farm. We are excited to hike up to the top of that cow pasture in the picture below. We feel very good about this arrangement and are just trying to find time to start staying there a little! Having a son without a car has  completely cramped my spur of the moment trips this week. Car shopping has moved way up on the list of priorities and hopefully the problem will be solved tomorrow.

We also met with our realtor during our day trip and looked at a lot that was for sale. It had the beautiful mountain view that we are seeking, but would take quite a bit of dirt moving to make the lot flat enough for our house and yard. Which we only bring the expense and total cost up and up. While standing on the lot, we look over and see a house built very similarly to the house we have drawn out. A-frame with lots of windows to capture those views! And this house was for sale, so our realtor worked it out for us to see the house while we were there. We had to wait outside a few minutes while our realtor worked out his key code update issues, and we were able to walk the 12 acre lot and got very excited about seeing the house. It was out of our price range, but had it been a layout that we were happy with, we were prepared to jump. I was already sorting out my arguments for why it was worth raising our budget to move on this house. And then we go inside … and my heart dropped. It was nothing like the layout that we desire and was definitely designed more as a vacation rental type home instead of everyday living. Huge bummer! But we go on! Still looking at land and houses available every single day. We are confident that once we are stationed in the area our ability to go check things out will be much greater and raise our chances of finding something!

The house plans are almost complete. Plans are drawn to scale and I’m still working on adding in permanent fixtures (kitchen cabinets, bathrooms, etc.) Hopefully on one of our next trips to Mountain City we will be able to show them to a couple of contractors and get some estimated building costs for it.

Here are a couple of pics from the new rental home. The first is from the back porch. That’s the cow pasture that we will be hiking up on our first day staying there I presume! The second is from the living room window. No houses and/or neighbors in sight! YES! Oh, and the best news is … We live in a “holler!” #CountryLiving

 

 

Hiking Adventures

We were able to do a couple of hikes this week. My guy took advantage of me being out of town for the Easter holiday and did a couple of solo hikes. We headed out on our bike trails a couple of afternoons. Our Tuesday afternoon hike was a long one on the Hot Tamale trail. He took it easy on me Wednesday since I had just had a mole removed and considered myself in recovery. Friday was a good hike on one of our favorite trails, The Hidden Hollow. I love seeing the pine cones, each one different and some so perfectly formed.

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Traveling Times

My son and I headed home to see the family in Tennessee for Easter. We left early Saturday morning and returned home Monday afternoon. It was a great trip, love catching up with all the kids, they are all so grown up and busy now! But not grown up enough to pass on dying eggs or an impromptu Easter Egg Hunt! You should have seen the hunt for that prize egg! We did my son’s senior pictures while we were there and family pictures of all the kids. All turned out beautifully! So very happy with them all. Stopped by to place a fresh flower arrangement on Dad’s grave. Mom’s old house used to be just down the road from the cemetery, I haven’t gotten used to not having to drive by it every trip yet. I always try to make a point to go by there whenever I’m in town. Our family is certainly changed without him.

We leave for NYC on Thursday morning! Hopefully all car stress will be handled and dealt with by then and we can peacefully enjoy our trip! Can’t wait! NYC here we come!

Sappy Selfies

Wow! It’s a first! We went through the entire week with not even one selfie!?!? I told you we have been way too busy! Oh well, instead here is a favorite of mine from the past! I love his one because it shows his silly side. Few people get to see this side of him. I’m glad I’m one that does!

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Have a great week! xoxoxo