June 28, 2024

Friday Photos


We spent the week here at the condo, with Steve going back and forth to the house and meeting with the kind people who fixed the leak. After almost thirty-three years of marriage ~ tomorrow!!~ he knows which things can throw me for a loop. Water damage and all the joy that comes with it is at the top of the list! In any case, the leak is repaired, the carpet and the subfloor are dried, and all the moisture in the walls is gone. The only thing left is the repairs, which include some drywall, paint, and new trim and carpet. If I may offer unsolicited advice to anyone who experiences water where water doesn't belong, I say this. Start clean up immediately. We were very fortunate to discover it right away this time, and Steve pulled the carpet before it had a chance to soak in too much. And don't try to dry it all yourself. Those companies like ServePro exist for that reason. They came with fans, dehumidifiers, and moisture-checking devices, and they only left once it was totally dry. 

But enough about my minor dilemma! It is a June weekend, and I hope you all have a wonderful one. We are heading back to the lake for a bit today! We are anxious to see Peyton, Chris, my mom, my sister, and her husband and spend some time on the boat. I am off now to gather my things and start packing. And I will grab one more cup of coffee for the road! Have a wonderful weekend, my friends! See you back here on Monday.

Billie Jo

June 26, 2024

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday


 Halloween Pennant Dragonfly

Thank you all for your comments on Monday's post. I am happy to report that Steve has it all under control. The cleanup is progressing with fans and dehumidifiers running, and it looks like most everything is salvageable. I am taking an out-of-sight, out-of-mind approach, which seems to work beautifully. 

Happy Wednesday!

Billie Jo

June 24, 2024

Monday Morning Coffee

Happy Monday, my friends! How was your weekend? I hope it was happy, fun, quiet, or cozy, whatever you hoped it would be. I'd like to tell you our weekend was uneventful and cozy, and that would be true. Sort of. This may help.

This is what one corner of my bedroom should look like on any random summer afternoon.

Aaaannnnd, this is what it looks like now.

Yep. Lovely, right? 

So, yesterday morning, I was making my bed, and right before I placed the last pillow and smoothed the last wrinkle, I felt something wet. And squishy. And wet. And despite all the wishful thinking I could muster, I soon realized that something was water coming from a place you don't want water to be. The carpet. We discovered that a hose hookup on the deck right outside the window is apparently leaking. Luckily, we caught it before it could do too much damage, and while it looks distressing and depressing, it could have been much worse.

And I would know. Water damage is our thing. We have had a pipe burst in a finished basement in one house, a basement flooded twice in another, and a lovely bathroom pipe burst in the ceiling of the kitchen in another. Through the years, I have learned to deal with these unfortunate situations differently. I realize now that as inconvenient and stressful as they may be, I am dealing with something fixable and within my control. Many other things are much worse. 

Would I prefer not to have the carpet ripped up and a hole cut in my drywall today? Absolutely. Am I aware that some people are waking up today in much worse conditions and with much more distressing things on their minds? Yes. So, there you go, my friends. It isn't always sunshine and butterflies around here. Sharing the good and the not-so-good is reality. And before you think I was all Pollyanna about this, please know I had a moment yesterday. And then I grabbed some towels and got to work. 

Have a lovely Monday, my friends. Thanks for visiting!

Billie Jo

June 21, 2024

Dogs, Ducks, Dreams, And Dessert

What would you say if I told you I didn't like dogs? Well, let me clarify that. I didn't always like dogs. In fact, I like my own dogs. You see, I grew up with cats. My family always had cats. My very first word was Pepper, the name of our all-black cat. We had Mittens, a black cat with white paws, and Maggie. When Steve and I were first married, and even though we lived in an apartment and Steve was a dog person, we got the cutest little kitten of our own. I had never touched a dog. Seriously. And then, my baby at the time, Rhett went to Kindergarten, and I was alone. By this time, Chelsea had found a new, quieter, child-free home with a sweet older man. My kids and my husband wanted a dog. And so Kirby became a member of our family. And we all loved him so. Eventually, Mocha joined our family, followed by Madison and Nico's pup Draper. Sadly, Kirby passed last summer at the age of fifteen, and then Cosmo and Marty arrived to help mend our broken hearts. Why am I telling you all this? Only to put the following few photos into context. And to explain why it is funny that my family now calls me, the woman who had never even touched a dog before her own, The Dog Whisperer. 

See what I mean? By the way, Marty was close by in his little pen for some quiet time. He is still in puppy mode!

In other news, I received two ducks the other day! Steve got one after he left the carwash, and we received one at the Boardwalk! If you are unfamiliar with this, as I was up until a short while ago, Duck Duck Jeep is widespread in the Jeep Wrangler community, and it is simply the act of placing a small, plastic duck on a Jeep Wrangler you see and like, appreciate or even to spread an act of kindness. It's fun!

Well, it is getting to be that time, my friends. I am starting to get the tiniest little itch to think about my favorite time of year...fall! Just a tiny bit, I promise! I am ready to enjoy every ounce of summer, I promise!

Finally, what is summer without a delicious fruit dessert? Madison found this recipe in her Pioneer Woman magazine, and we both knew we had to try it! We made it together, as it is easier with two sets of hands, and it was amazing! We substituted some blackberries for some of the blueberries and used sour cream in place of the yogurt, but otherwise, we followed the recipe as written. The homemade whipped cream is AMAZING! I will link the recipe below. 

Well, have a wonderful weekend, my friends. Thanks for visiting, commenting, and emailing. This world of blogging is such a wonderful, happy, cozy space!

Billie Jo

(Google for fun.)

June 17, 2024

Monday Morning Coffee Talk

Good morning! Was your weekend everything you wished it to be? We had a lovely one here, with delicious dinners cooked by the kids for their father, a beautiful mass, a relaxing visit to the beach, and a long afternoon nap for me. My son brought me flowers, Madison and Nicolas made Steve his favorite pasta dish, he talked to Peyton on the phone, and Rhett and Nicolas took him out for a drink. 

Flynn, Marty, Cosmo, and Mocha will finish our school year this week. I am happy to say they all passed eighth grade. A few of them need to work on some minor behavioral issues over the summer, though. : )

Oh, and if there are any questions, Halloween is always in style here.

Billie Jo

June 14, 2024

A Friday In June

Happy Friday! And here I go, lamenting that it is Friday already, not only Friday but Friday in the middle of June! How in the world is this possible? Sometimes, I feel like I am on a merry-go-round, and it starts going faster and faster, and I want to slow down. I can't because I'm not in charge. I want to jump off, but I can't because, well, pain and injury, so I hold on as tightly as I can and try to focus on what is happening instead of how fast it is happening, but I can't because although the ride is smooth, it is also moving way too quickly! 

As Father's Day approaches, I am reminded of the many times I knocked on my parents' bedroom door and opened it to tell my Dad goodnight. I remember him listening to me talk and talk and then telling me not to wish my life away because the older you get, the faster it goes. As so often the case, young teenage me heard him but couldn't comprehend what he was saying. Time is time, right? And again, as so often is the case, my Dad was right. The older I get, the faster the days, months, and years pass. Suddenly, I am far from that teenager, pulling into the driveway with minutes to spare before curfew, wishing for just one more "Goodnight, Dad" before bed. 

He was an awesome dad who adored his five girls so much!

I am blessed to have been born to a fantastic father and to have married a man who became one! This weekend, we will celebrate Steve, who is the most amazing father to all of our children. He has a special, unique relationship with each one, and always has the answer for any of life's questions. He was the field trip parent, the soccer coach, the driving teacher, the concert-goer, the amusement park rider, and the vacation planner. He continues many of those things with Flynn and is now the older kids' financial advisor and all-around advice-giver. 

We will celebrate him with dinner, gifts, and phone calls this weekend, too! 

In other news, Flynn and I are still working on homeschooling. We will finish next week, although we could continue because we really enjoy it! A break will be good, though. And when we resume, she will be a freshman! There are flowers and puppies and sunshine around here, too!

Have a wonderful weekend, my friends. Happy Father's Day to all! May those of us who no longer have our fathers here with us find peace in the memories we hold. 

Did I mention Steve bakes, too?? Peach upside-down cake. Who knew?

Billie Jo