Monday, October 29, 2012

30 Days of Thanksgiving: Days 3-6

30 Days of Thanksgiving
When I started this series of posts I don't think I gave much thought to my ability to post on the weekends!  This weekend didn't find me having a moment to sit down at the computer but it did find me with plenty to be thankful for! 

Day 3-6, 2012: I am thankful for my boy's school.  We are blessed with a school that truly partners with us as parents to help rear young men that have a solid foundation not just academically but also spiritually, socially and physically.  My boys have teacher's and coaches who go above and beyond the call of duty to reach out and show true servant leadership. 

I am also thankful that our Varsity Football team has a slot in region playoffs!  My oldest DS plays on the Varsity team and he is so excited to be part of such a great team!  The 1st playoff game is Friday night so wish us luck.

I am thankful for dear friends and neighbors.  We had a great time with friends for dinner on Saturday and laughed and talked until late into the night.  On Sunday night we had a great party with our neighbors as we wished a very sweet neighbor (actually we call her the "mayor" of our neighborhood) well as she leaves our little 'hood for another across town.  We have a neighborhood that is hard to beat...more like family than just folks who live in the houses down the street!

Today I am also grateful that this weekend that I had my entire family under one roof!  DD came home unexpectedly from college which was GREAT.  When we are all here, everything feels right with the world. 

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!
Psalm 107:1 (ESV)

Please join me celebrating 30 Days of Thanksgiving
by leaving me a comment telling me
what you are thankful for today!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

30 Days of Thanksgiving: Day 2

30 Days of Thanksgiving

Day 2, 2012: It is only the second day of my 30 Days of Thanksgiving and I am embarrassed to admit that today my “thankful bone” isn’t feeling very strong. There have been a series of annoying, albeit minor, incidents that have my selfish nature wanting to throw my hands up and scream, “Why me???” or “I hate my life!!!” But, as I sit here trying to focus and unwind from the stresses that plotted to take me down, I am determined to see the blessings in today.

So, on Day 2, I am thankful for access to a great Doctor when we need it. When I called him today with an issue…he said just come over. I am thankful for his consistent care and concern for my family on big and little issues. I am thankful for his staff who are always patient, even when I seem to be a frequent flyer in their office.

I am thankful for the summer like temperatures that allowed me to plant pansies this morning without wearing a jacket in the beautiful fall morning sun!

I am thankful for a school secretary that cares enough about my child to call me just to double check on his health issues.

I am thankful for T-shirt/yoga pant days, even if those are days I always seem to have to take a child unexpectedly to the doctor. And, also that our Doctor hasn’t asked if that is the only outfit I own.

Well, my thankfulness might not be all that deep today…but I am filled with the overwhelming blessings that abound in my life.

Rejoice always, pray continually,
give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
~1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV)

Please join me celebrating 30 Days of Thanksgiving by leaving me a comment
telling me what you are thankful for today!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

30 Days of Thanksgiving: Day 1

If you have been reading Southern Somedays for any length of time you may have gathered that I am a holiday junkie. I love Christmas, Easter, 4th of July…you name it, but my favorite is the quiet and less noticed Thanksgiving. It has been that way my entire life. I truly think because, in my mind, it kicks off the most wonderful time of the year, that magical season that starts in November and runs completely through January 1st!

This year I am approaching Thanksgiving with the spirit of the holiday in focus and going to celebrate Thirty Days of Thanksgiving by blogging 30 days of things for which I am thankful. I would love it if you would join me and leave a comment about what you are thankful for today and lets all let this season touch our hearts and lives in a deeper way this year!

30 Days of Thanksgiving
Day 1, 2012: Tonight I was reminded that the 1st and greatest blessing in my life is my relationship with Jesus Christ; nothing else compares. I am so thankful that I have Him in my life and can’t imagine how I would get through even one day without Him.

This past year has brought many challenges and I didn’t see them coming. I was completely and totally unprepared mentally, physically and spiritually. Had I not had a loving Heavenly Father that loved me enough to give His son so that I might live fully, I don’t know how I would have made it through this year. Christ was truly my saving grace in the face of fear, anxiety, uncertainty and pain. He is the foundation I need day to day. I am so very thanksfilled for His forgiveness, grace, mercy and presence in my life.

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
Colossians 2:6-7 (NIV)

Please join me celebrating 30 Days of Thanksgiving!

Monday, October 22, 2012

My Vintage Dreams Monday

Some days I find myself dreaming of things past.  I don't dream about Little House on the Prairie past but I love the early to mid 1900s and the glamour and beauty that seemed to be pervasive. I know it wasn't perfect but I just know I was born a few decades too late.

Source: via Bella on Pinterest

Source: via Bella on Pinterest

Where do your Vintage Dreams take you?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Christmas Shopping, Tips and Deals!

You can get your own Black Friday T at Black Friday Ads
Can you believe we are only 68 days, 14 hours, 29 minutes and 20 seconds until Christmas (at the time of this the time of your reading the time is even less!!!)

This morning after I dropped my boys off at school it hit... the Christmas Shopping Bug!  All of the sudden I was ready to get myself in gear to GET IT DONE!  Actually, this year I may do some Black Friday shopping.  I haven't done that in years but I guess I am feeling dangerous and want to live life on the cutting edge this year.  I haven't committed to this plan yet, so don't hold me to it (I am a sucker for sleeping in so that very may well trump any aspiration I have to run with the big dogs of shopping.)

One of the best preps for Black Friday Shopping is the website: Black Friday Ads!  They have already been sharing ads from retailers (some of them leaked) showing the deals that are to be had. You can also learn about some pretty nifty need to know tips such as Best Buy planning to do some limited*  price-matching of online retailers this holiday season while also offering free shipping on items not available in stores. The new policy is said to go into effect starting Sunday, November 4.  Black Friday Ads is a free service and you can sign up for emails and then receive all those early ads delivered right to your inbox or you can just browse the site.   If you plan to be tackle shopping on the most dangerous day of the year...make sure you go prepared!

Do you have your shopping face ON?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

An Open Letter to Publix


Dear Publix,

I love you; but this long distance relationship we have is really breaking my heart.  I keep hearing rumors that you are going to actually settle down and move to my town so we can see each other on a regular know, truly share our lives.  So far, though, the rumors are just serving to torture me.

I am so ready to stop this quicky visit just isn't enough.  Not to mention, it is hard for me to sneak away from my regular life and drive an hour and half just to steal a few minutes with you.  It is time...lets make this into a real commitment.  I know my friends and family will accept you with open arms.  Actually, they are as desperate for you as I am.

Since moving to Florence, SC the only thing I regularly long for is you.  So please pack up the trucks and beat a quick path to where I20 and I95 intersect so that our love can continue to grow and flourish.  There are many memories yet to be made.

Nothing Compares to You

Nothing but a Hound Dog...

I have an intense affinity for hunting dogs. Since I don't hunt, I think it must come from being the granddaughter of a man who hunted with dogs.

Of course, my Granddaddy’s dogs weren’t pets, no matter how cute they looked. My Aunt, who is only 5 months older than I am, and I were not allowed in the pens with his dogs and they were most definitely not allowed out to play with us. His dogs were there for a purpose, not to be coddled and treated like a babies…at least that was his perspective; though we could often be found petting and feeding them through the fence when he wasn’t watching. I never knew what kind of dogs my granddaddy might have in the pens in his back yard, as his attachment to those dogs was purely a business arrangement. One visit he might have Coon Hounds or Black & Tans and the next a whole pack of Beagles. He even belonged to a “Dog Club.” What they did at the Dog Club is still a mystery to me, but I suspect it had a lot more to do with eating biscuits and yacking with his buddies than anything else. Even when he was too old to hunt, he and his brothers and buddies would build a fire at the edge of his yard, sit around and listen to the dogs of other hunters run and bay in the darkness.

It is funny that my affinity for hunting dogs hasn’t really translated to the dogs we have owned. We spent almost 14 years sharing life with an amazingly intelligent, but very prissy, red Chow named Cheinne. Then there was that less than intelligent cross between a Chow and what I assume was a big black Lab traveling man, named Dixie Belle. Currently, I suppose, I have the closest thing to hunting dog I have ever had in our Golden Cocker Spaniel. It gives me some kind of thrill to see her set up when she has spotted an evil squirrel stalking our back yard. In truth, she is about as much a hunting dog as I am a hunter. But, that doesn’t mean I don’t dream about having a Blue Tick or even a Blood Hound of my own one day…maybe I will just go sit out by my fire pit and imagine barking in the distance.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Car Manufacturers, You Need Me!

I have finally determined what kind of job I need (or rather what companies need to hire me!) I would be the perfect Automotive Test Driver! YES, I would!!! No, I don’t have experience as a race car driver; no, I don’t have a degree in engineering or mechanical design; nor will you find grease under my finger nails but I have a lot of driving experience.

My driving odyssey started on a red dirt road in the mountains of North GA in a stripped down Toyota Corolla but quickly translated to negotiating 6 lanes of traffic coming out of down town Atlanta every afternoon in a first generation Hyundai Excel (when they cost $6995 new). I have vast experience negotiating traffic while also handing a sippy cup safely to the back seat to a screaming toddler…while driving a manual transmission. I have great experience in how to haul hay in the backseat of a Cadillac and how to haul lumber out the sunroof of a Pontiac Grand AM GT. I am an expert on how to change the fuses in a 1987 Volvo 240 DL when I forgot that I couldn’t roll both front windows down at the same time without blowing one. I have tied a tail pipe up with telephone wire (hey, it was all I had!) I have been left stranded in a much loved gold Mercedes…in the rain. I know what a clogged fire trap is. I have handled a tire blow out on I85 North in Atlanta during the afternoon drag race in a great little Volvo 850 GLT. I have driven 170,000 miles on the original clutch of a late 87 Pontiac Sunbird SE. I have driven a Chrysler minivan back and forth from Atlanta to New York with 3 kids in tow more times than should be legally allowed. I slid a Z28 with T-Tops sideways just because I could. I know that a pristine Volvo S80 can be struck by lightning – while you are driving it – and no amount of engineering wizardry can save it. I have cleaned crayons, marker and otherwise unknown stains from more car seats than I can count. I proudly added the Over 100,000 miles and Over 200,000 miles medallions to my beloved Volvo 850, which now belongs to and is driven by a dear friend at over 300k. Frequently, you will find me behind the wheel of a GMAC XL Yukon, even if I had to deploy ladders to get in it. I currently have an 18 year old Pontiac Sunbird Convertible in my garage which I still drive from time to time. The piece ‘de resistance, I taught 2 teenagers how to drive and still have one to go!

Right now, my own 2003 Volvo XC90 with 175,000 miles is facing week 6 in the shop and I am currently driving a loaner from Volvo in the form of a 2013 Volvo XC90. I could share a lot with Volvo that they may have missed from their fancy Auto Test Drivers considering my 2003 XC90 is the 4th Volvo I have owned. I could also lend a little perspective to Dodge after the rental car of theirs I drove last week on a trip…it was a good little ride but needs some tweaking in the ergonomics department.

I may not be able to round a test track at 732 miles per hour but I can tell you when your steering wheel is too fat for my hands. I can tell you what makes your car sexy to me…the mom of 3 who likes to relax by riding, sans children, with the radio blasting. I can tell you if your car makes me look frumpy and dumpy. I can tell you what makes me want your car because it makes my life easier and what would make your car part of my family. I can also tell you what will make a difference in which brand I buy next…and what a dealership can do to help sway my choice and keep me coming back regardless of price.

None of this may make me the traditional candidate as an Auto Test Driver, but I know cars. I know what women and families want in cars. I know what a woman wants when she has kids in tow and when she just wants to turn up the radio and forget she is an adult for a while. I know what she needs when she doesn’t know anyone with a truck to help her haul her latest soon to be DIY project home. I know what she needs when she wants to feel a bit pampered behind the wheel. I know what she wants when she just needs to get from point A to B without mortgaging her soul. I have been all of those women at one time or another. Trust me…I know cars.

So, car manufacturers, I can offer you something which you may not be accustom…honesty from the trenches. I await your offers.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Christmas Question Number 1

Image via Lemon Tree Wholesale
How many of you send Christmas cards?  I mean really send them to everyone? 

I have been a very faithful sender of Christmas cards but this year I am thinking very seriously about cutting back severely a bit.  Hopefully this isn't a sign of early onset bah humbug but I am not sure.  Last year, after having them printed and mailed I spent a small fortune (just ask my DH...he will tell you...) and I don't think they are really keeping us in touch with friends and family like I used to think they did.  So, dear readers, what are your thoughts on Christmas cards?  I really want to know!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

I am back....

So, I can't believe it has been almost 2 months since I last posted!  Is anyone still here??? Anyone?

I thought I was just taking a quick break from blogging to get my boys in school but it turned out to be a bit longer!  Actually, I have radically trimmed my online social media time as I was convicted that the time I spent online was robbing me and my family from wonderful IRL experiences.  I have trimmed my Facebook time, my blog time, my email time and even the dreaded, but much addictive, Twitter time!  Yes, I have even managed to limit my Pinterest time!!!  It has been a good thing and I feel so much more productive.  At one point in time, when I was writing for publications, I could justify the online time (you know research, inspiration...blah, blah, blah) but since at this time I am not trying to write...yes, dear reader (are there any of you left?), you will have to wait a bit longer on that Great Southern Novel (do you hear the snickering?).... I feel that my time is better served in more moderate doses online.

What have I been doing as late???  Do you mean in between the never ending loads of laundry, living in the car as kids get ferried here and there and the continual DIY projects???  Well...

In late August there were some pretty big changes that came to the Southern Somedays household, starting with my youngest son starting 5th grade, my older son starting 10th grade and my daughter entering her senior year of college.  If those stats aren't enough to freak a Mom out, I don't know what is....I just can't be this old...I am not old enough to have kids this old.  Where did my babies go?  And why is this almost 6 foot young man claiming to be MY son???  Oh...swan!  With school comes football for both boys (although my older son being a Varsity player was at football all summer as well), my younger son is also immersed in a local theatre workshop, not to mention all the church activities that come along with the school year! 

We also saw some big changes on the work front with DH.  He has taken a job that now keeps him on the road during the week and that has been a major change for us.  I have to say I was pretty spoiled with having him home pretty much every night, but the new job has been tons of fun for DH.  It is in a much different industry than he has been in previously and I think he has really enjoyed the challenges so far.  When my kiddos were little DH traveled almost 100% of the time and it was hard....did I mention it was HARD?  But, so far, this has been much different and I am sure it is because I don't have any little ones to manage all by myself.

Hopefully, I can figure out just the right balance between online and IRL and get back to blogging!  I think I have missed it!