Archive for the 'RT/PawPaw' Category


“I Adoor you!”

Thursday, March 22nd, 2007

I’m at my mother’s in Georgia, and RT sent me an email with a photo of the front door we’re getting for our new house. At the end of his email he wrote, “I adoor you.” It took me a few seconds to get it, but when I did I literally laughed out loud.  No wonder I love the man!

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Poor Stinkeroo! She has to take care of EVERYBODY!

Wednesday, February 28th, 2007

You may recall a couple weeks ago when I wrote about having strep.  I missed only one day of work, but I felt awful for several days.  I probably spread strep around at school before I knew I had it.

Well, this past Sunday morning, RT woke up and told me that he thought he might have strep because his throat was so sore.  Not wanting to spread it around at church if he did have it, we skipped church and went to a Minute Clinic to get a strep test.  Yep, he had it.  He said he thought he’d probably had it for at least a week because he had felt so tired and run down – but no sore throat until the weekend.

Stinkeroo (our daughter) called last night.  “Mom, did you or Dad have a fever when you had strep throat?”

“No, neither of us ran a fever.”

“I think Sweet Stuff might have strep.  She doesn’t have a fever, but she says her throat is hurting.”

So this morning, I checked email.  Stinkeroo was true to form.  Even though it was night, she wanted to know for sure.  At 10:30 last night Stinkeroo emailed me to tell me that she had taken Sweet Stuff to the Minute Clinic, and she did have strep.

So, in the last week, my precious Stinkeroo has been to the doctor with Sunshine who was diagnosed with croup.  I wrote about staying home with her last Thursday.  Then to the hospital with S when he had minor surgery.  Monday she had to take their dog, Bogey, to the veterinarian to get staples for a bad cut he got while jumping over some equipment for an irrigation system they’re putting in their yard, and now she had to take Sweet Stuff to the doctor for strep throat.

Here’s part of her email which I thought was funny:

I was telling S, I don’t think any of us had been to a doctor in a while and in the past week, I have been to the Dr with Sunshine for the Croup, S for a Hernia Surgery, Bogey to staple his leg, and now Sweet Stuff with Strep.   I guess I need to take vitamins to make sure I don’t catch anything, so I can take care of everyone.   I just really hope we don’t pass around Strep in the family.  The lady there thought it was funny Sweet Stuff caught strep from grandparents instead of the other way around.

Yep, PawPaw and Grandma Carol – the strep throat carriers.  Sadly, it’s true.

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My First Valentine’s Day With RT

Wednesday, February 14th, 2007

It was back in 1968 – my freshman winter at college in Kentucky.  RT and I had started dating in the fall.  I was crazy about the guy!   I was living on campus in a women’s dorm.  RT lived across campus in a men’s dorm.  My dorm was an old fashioned one with the restrooms and showers at the end of the hall. 

I had to work my way through school doing various jobs – cleaning the bathrooms, working in the cafeteria – whatever work I could get.  That year I worked the breakfast line in the cafeteria, and so I got up early in the  mornings to get to the cafeteria before the serving lines opened.

That Valentine morning, the alarm clock rang, and I trudged down the hallway to take care of morning necessities and get my shower.  Awhile later, I returned to my room – and there on my bed was a HUGE heart-shaped box of candy with a large red valentine card next to it.  

It was from RT, and to say I was surprised would be an understatement.  He wrote lots of sweetly romantic stuff in the card.  He’s very good at that.  I was ecstatic because I never expected such a treat.  RT had gotten a friend of mine to hide the candy and card, wait for me to go to the restroom, and then put them on my pillow.  It was a tender start to a life-long romance.  I still smile when I think of it.

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Attention, Pet Owners! You Have POORER Health!

Friday, January 12th, 2007

Aha!  I knew it.  Dogs are NOT good for you, after all!

I’ve never been much of a pet-lover.  However, RT really wanted to get a dog.  So we got Jake three months ago.  Since then I’ve had my sleep messed up virtually every night (since RT insists that Jake sleep on the floor next to our bed) by dog odor and dog noises, there is black dog hair EVERYWHERE, Jake actually has started jumping on top of my car with his muddy feet – keeping it a muddy mess.  I’m dreading all the scratches that are inevitably under all that mud.  (Note: There are indeed some significant LONG scratches on the hood of my car. I just ordered a car cover to use until we get a garage so the dog can’t get to it.) He still pees on the floor occasionally (ok – rarely, but still!) scratches the doors horribly, and chews any bit of paper he can find into shreds all over the floor. 

I was so naive at first – I just never considered that RT having a dog meant that I would have to sleep in the same room with a smelly dog every night.  I can deal with the other stuff, but not being able to sleep well really messes me up.

Now there is research to show that, despite all the supposedly wonderful benefits of having a pet,  perhaps having a pet is not such a warm and fuzzy experience all the time.

By Amy Norton
Reuters
NEW YORK (Jan. 10) – While research has suggested that pets can offer people health benefits, a new study from Finland finds that pet owners tend to be heavier, less active and in poorer health than those without a pet. 

However, that doesn’t mean pets are bad for us, the researchers note. Rather, people most likely to have a pet, such as middle-aged and home-owners, also tend to be more sedentary and thicker around the middle.

Researchers at the University of Turku in Finland report the findings in PLoS ONE, an online journal published by the Public Library of Science.

A number of studies have suggested that certain people benefit from living with a dog or cat — a pet may help lower blood pressure and heart rate, for example, or ease stress, loneliness and even dementia-related agitation in the elderly.

But whether pet owners as a group are a healthier lot has been unclear. The new findings suggest they’re not.

Using survey data from more than 21,000 young to middle-aged Finnish adults, researchers found that pet owners were generally more likely to be overweight and to view their own health as poor.

This was largely because pet owners tended to be middle-aged, have less education and more health-risk factors, explained Dr. Leena K. Koivusilta, the study’s lead author.

And despite having Fido to take for walks, even dog owners typically got little exercise.

This is likely because they were often home-owners who could simply put the dog in the yard, Koivusilta noted.

The fact that pet owners were in poorer health does not mean that furry companions aren’t a health boon in some cases, she told Reuters Health.

“In my opinion,” Koivusilta said, “pets provide us all with a vast potential for health promotion, and this has indeed been shown when some special groups have been studied.”

Pet owners, according to the researchers, may just need to make more of an effort — such as walking and playing with the dog instead of showing him the way to the yard.

Okay, the study doesn’t prove that Jake isn’t good for me. It just has to do with people not getting out and walking their pets.  I’ll continue to TRY to be a good sport about Jake.  Really, though, TO ME, dogs are just gross!
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A Long Weekend With The Grandgirls

Friday, December 29th, 2006

They’ll be here soon – sometime around 9:00 a.m.  We will babysit the grandgirls until sometime mid-day on Monday.  It’s their mom’s birthday (our daughter).  My baby will be 32 years old.  She and our son-in-law are going to spend the weekend with some friends and celebrate her birthday.  RT and I will take care of Sweet Stuff (5 years old) and Sunshine (3 years old).  I’m looking forward to it.

In preparation, I went to Michael’s yesterday and picked up some arts and crafts items.  I had given the girls digital cameras for Christmas (VERY inexpensive children’s cameras.  They were only $19.95 each – so I’m not expecting any great photos).  I thought we might try printing some of their pictures and making a small photo album OR just framing a photo from each of their cameras.  We’ll have to see what quality photos they’ve taken.

Since they enjoy helping me cook so much, I bought aprons for all of us, and we’ll paint and decorate those aprons and then keep them here for them to use whenever they visit and we cook. 

Blogging might be extra light this weekend because I will be quite busy!

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Ground Has Been Broken – We’re On Our Way

Sunday, December 17th, 2006

On Thursday, December 14th, the ground was officially broken on our new house.  Excavators did the rough grade and excavated for the crawl space.  Next week the footing and foundation are scheduled to be done.  Here is a photo of the first of four truckloads of timber taken from the building site. 

 

This next photo is of the building site on Thursday afternoon.  This is an exciting phase in the building process because we can see where each room will be.  

Friday the surveyer marked the corners of the house with orange stakes.  I will add a photo of that later today.  We have spent literally hours looking at the stakes from every angle and deciding whether or not the house is situated exactly as we want it.  It isn’t. It’s off by a couple feet.  Tomorrow or Tuesday the surveyer will re-survey to make the house sit a little more horizontally on the ridge. 

Our goal is to have the framing and roof done by the end of January.  We want to move in by RT’s birthday on July 12th.   Funny note: Our daughter apparently has little faith in her father (since he took many years to complete the addition to our current home).  She predicted we wouldn’t be in even by Christmas next year.  Hmmmm.  We’ll see.

By the way, HERE’s the floor plan for the house.  The only change is that we’ve added a bedroom downstairs off the laundry room. 

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Watch out for deer!

Tuesday, December 12th, 2006

Each morning when I leave for work, the last thing R.T. tells me is, “Watch out for deer!”  It all started a couple months back because my route to work takes me through some country backroads where deer are plentiful.  Too often, alonside the road, I see deer who were on the losing end of an encounter with a vehicle.  I often see deer in the distance or near the road.  So far, though, none had come close to running in front of me.

Soon, R.T.’s caution became a ritual – and, as silly as it might sound, it is one that always brings a smile to my face.  RT never missed an opportunity to tell me to “Watch out for deer” until this  morning.  He was hurrying to meet a workman over at the building site and was distracted.   I was on my way to work before I realized he hadn’t said it.  I almost called him to tease him about forgetting it, but I figured the phone call would jinx me. 

Jinxed or not, it didn’t take long.  Sure enough, about six miles from school, as I drove down a road with particularly scenic woods on each side, I saw the deer.  He was a large stately buck with an impressive rack of antlers, and he stood poised by the side of the road ahead – seemingly ready to dash across in front of me.  I slowed the car.  He looked my way, paused briefly- seeming to make eye contact – and then turned and bounded off into the woods.  It was one of those unexpected moments in life when you see something so beautiful and close-up it takes your breath away.

I called R.T.  “You forgot something this morning,” I said.

“Watch out for deer!” There are advantages to knowing someone so well.  He knew exactly why I had called. He had already realized that he hadn’t given his usual caution.

“Too late,” I answered.  I let the words hang there for a second or two before I assured him that I had not run into a deer but had merely seen one.  Of course I had to talk about how large it was and how big the antlers had been.

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Building Our Own House – RT and Carol, the Builders – A Long and Winding Road

Tuesday, December 12th, 2006

Our builder decided he had too much going on in his life, and he couldn’t start on another project right now.  So, RT and I talked to yet another builder a couple weeks ago.  We came home and talked about it, and made a decision . . .. WE’RE GOING TO BUILD OUR HOUSE OURSELVES!  Or more accurately, RT is going to do it with my support. I’ll handle most of the paperwork and phone calls.  He’ll do the grunt work of dealing with sub-contractors.  Plus he has already done a lot of the work himself.  He made the driveway, laid the pipe for the electricity and cleared the building site.  And I have worked on the site a lot, too.  See “The Adventures of PyroWoman and DozerMan” to see the kinds of things I’ve done to help get the site ready.

Here’s a photo I took yesterday of our newly graveled driveway-to-be. 

It’s a LONG driveway because our house will be built on the back of our property – high on a hill with woods surrounding us.  The part of the driveway NOT in the photo is as long as what’s showing in it.  When we pave it, the bill will be a whopper. But it’s SO beautiful!

Below is a photo of the building site taken a couple weeks ago.  In the photo, RT is busy with the chainsaw.   We now have enough firewood to last for years!  It hurt to cut down so many trees, but you can’t build a house without clearing a space for it.  We sold some for timber, cut other for firewood, and we burned some.

RT finished the rough clearing for the house yesterday.  Here is that photo.  This photo is of the same area as the previous one.  So you can see how much work has been done.

 

 

 
That’s RT on the bulldozer.  Is that not the ultimate in toys for men?  This week the footing and foundation people will start working. I’m so excited that we’re actually getting ready to BUILD.   

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The Lion King – Broadway Musical – Skinny seatmates wanted

Saturday, December 2nd, 2006

RT and I got tickets last June for last night’s performance of THE LION KING at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center. It’s the last weekend of the show’s run.

We started out the evening by eating dinner at Bonefish Grill. My tilapia was great. RT’s rainbow trout was not so good, and we had to send it back. The “bang bang shrimp” appetizer, though, was absolutely delicious! So dinner was about par for the course. It’s always a crap shoot when you eat out. Even the best restaurants are usually mediocre at best. After dinner, we were off to the theater.

We had fairly good seats, but as we approached our row, I knew we were in trouble. Our two seats were open, but on one side was a VERY large man. He spilled over from his seat into about half of what would be my seat. I’m definitely not skinny, but I don’t take up more than my one seat’s worth. However, I DO need my complete seat. I didn’t have half to share with a brawny stranger. However, it wasn’t a matter of sharing. He had already laid claim to the space.

After we sat down, and I slid over as close to RT’s seat as I could, I realized that the guy’s arm was still mashed up against the side of my chest, and I could feel every muscle flinch of his leg. His legs were so big that he had to sit with his knees wide apart. We were basically touching from shoulder to knee. It was way too much familiarity for me – bordering on obscene. Mr. Brawny was there with his girlfriend – they were holding hands and were engaged in a lively discussion up until the show started. Perhaps during the show he’d lean her way.

I asked RT to please see if there were two other seats available anywhere – even the top row of the balcony would be better than unwillingly cuddling with Mr. Brawny the entire evening. There was one seat available, and the ushers said they’d put a chair beside that seat if we wanted it. I decided to stay put and wait and see if things got any better after the show started.

At about this point, RT leaned over to the very skinny teenager sitting on his other side and remarked, “Thank God you’re skinny.”

The opening of THE LION KING was spectacular.

I would probably have enjoyed the show much more if I hadn’t been so constantly aware of Mr. Brawny’s every move. It just didn’t feel right to be so intimately smashed against someone I didn’t know. Things did get better during the show as he tried to shift toward his girlfriend. However, they were a well-matched pair because she was also taking up more than her allotted seat space. So there was not much room in which to maneuver. Nevertheless, we enjoyed the show.

Towards the end, when the ballet dancers came out, RT started shaking with laugher. Male ballet dancers do that to him. That got me started, and we both were just about in tears from laughing and working to be quiet about it.

All in all, it was an enjoyable evening. Definitely not worth the $170+ we paid for the tickets or the $50+ we paid for the meal. You just never can tell. Sometimes shows can take your breath away for all the right reasons – and sometimes you have to sit next to a Mr. Brawny.

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Love Notes Under the Windshield Wiper

Thursday, November 30th, 2006

This morning when I got in the car to go to work, I found a note under the windshield wiper. Here it is:

Carol,
In The Prophet, Kahlil Gibran writes, “Work is love made visible.” Your work as a teacher, writer, cooker, and mostly as a wife and mother is truly an example of how love is made visible and beautiful. Thanks for how you make love visible. Good luck as you are evaluated today. Love, RT

Now, isn’t that the tenderest thing?!

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