Retirement (with Raspberries)

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Man, have I missed you guys!! I can honestly say that for a while there (and it was a long, long, LONG while), I was beginning to wonder if I would ever make it back here - talk about insanity squared! I have really been struggling to find some kind of balance (and sadly, I'm still not there :oP For whatever reason, this school year has been particularly brutal, with a hectic pace throughout every period and classes scattered all over campus. By the end of the day, I am absolutely fried and frequently catch myself just staring blankly at the wall trying to drum up enough energy to make it to the car and drive home. I don't have much computer access compared to last year either, so my ability to write a post in small snippets over the course of a few days to a week is blown. To compound matters even further, DH has done The Deed. He is officially Retired (though I'll cop to saying it Ree-taard on a regular basis ;o) For those of you wondering what on earth that has to do with my ability to write a blog post, well let me tell you...
Photo Inset: Taya, who looks tubby enough to rate her own zip code.

DH retired the very same day I went back to work. He decided to wait a few months to look for something to do part time; choosing instead to relax and hang out at home. All. The. Time. Since then, he has gained magic skills to rival those of David Copperfield. I have yet to figure out how the man can be in every room of the entire house at the same time, but he is. Clean laundry in hand, I'll zip by him kicked back in the recliner snoring er, watching the news in the family room, only to have him scare the pants off me two minutes later when I plow right into him as I leave the bedroom closet. Sometimes he forgoes the teleporting and just follows me all over the house. Drives me batty. Pretty sure I threatened bodily injury at one point. Now don't misunderstand me; I love my husband, but the man is in desperate need of a hobby, a job, something (anything!) that gets him out of the house [read: my hair] once in awhile. If I pick up the laptop to try to work on the blog at home, he suddenly has a list of 42 things he forgot to tell me. If it's not that, he has a completely different list of things he'd like me to look up for him on the internet. Exciting things; like tractor or truck part numbers and mechanical how to's. *yawn*

Then DH got a phone call with some wonderful news - his/our friend Ron, was moving back to the area. You may know Ron better by his nickname: Brains (this post). I shall now state the obvious: Brawn has proven to be largely incapable of functioning without Brains. Although DH has made a few attempts at tackling all the things he was going to get to when he "ree-tard", he hasn't made much  in the way of a dent so far. Hopefully, now that his brain is back where it belongs, things will start to pick up. Well, maybe ;o)

Some other good news? After all the cooking and cleaning up of Thanksgiving Day was over, I actually managed to stuff in (get it? ba-dump-bump ;o) some Christmas DIYs. I was only able to work in fits and starts, so I didn't have time to do a fun little series of photos as things progressed - apologies!! I don't know about you, but I always like to watch things come together. Anyhoo, I have a close friend (who has had a lot of challenging things going on in her life), and she and I have had many discussions about choosing to be joyful as a Christian - something that is a lot harder than you'd think. At some point, she told me she had put little signs up all over her house to remind herself to "choose joy". Isn't that a great idea? Thinking it would be neat to incorporate it into Christmas, I dug through my thrift/craft store inventory to see what I could find. I already had most everything on hand, but made a gun run to Hobby Lobby for some unpainted .99c letters.

As someone whose default mode is too often of the gloom and doom variety, I loved the idea of a visual reminder. This version is also aesthetically more pleasing than having it tattooed backwards on my forehead (something I have periodically considered ;o) I wanted to add a little "joyful" reminder to our holiday decor this year (mostly because it popped into my head as I was putting up decorations). Funny that I just happened to have those three (totally tacky) little wooden plaques on hand from the '70's that I picked up at a thrift shop... somewhere. Scrounging through my hardware bin I hit paydirt with (would you believe it?) three little decorative hangers. Slap on the paint, glue on some Christmas scrapbook paper, add the letters, some ribbon, some more ribbon, the peel-n-stick felt backing so it won't kill the walls, and... Ta Da! A fun and festive reminder to myself to choose joy. Not quite finished, but getting there!

Have you guys seen the recycled picture frame wreaths? They're very different, and I just love them! I'd never even heard of them until I stumbled across one on Pinterest (yes, I know, I really need to stay away from there). It just so happened that I knew of an OTD frame (older-than-dirt) that had been decomposing  *Ahem* languishing in our garage (for the past twenty years). It was a big, gorgeously ornate frame that came from the living room of my childhood home. It was fabulous, but far and away too fancy-schmancy for our house. I was so excited to finally have a purpose for it! After cleaning it up and adding some scrap wood to the back for stability, I gave it a hefty coat of some pretty gold spraypaint. It had quite a bit of damage down the left side, but that just made the decision of where to put the greenery an easy one. I'll have the finished photos for you next time. Lord willing, it won't take me anywhere near as long to get to that post ;o)

I have one more Christmas idea that I'm playing with, but I think I'll save that one for next time too (goodness knows, I've yammered more than enough this time, right? ;o) As always, thank you so much for reading this far and have a blessed day!

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