Forward - From the Heartland of Carolina

This is a continuing story of the journey Forward shared by 2 people, Lynne and Tom. Both love to LIVE life to it's fullest, which currently means spending lots of time outdoors, working on various projects from gardens to patios, flowers to vegetables, sunrises and sunsets, birds and woodland critters, and spending time with family. Don't forget to check the monthly archives, and please feel free to leave us a comment so we know you stopped by.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Before, During, After.. Remodeling and other things

As Lynne said, we've been busy on the next phase of the changes. Here's several before/after pictures for comparison.





The straight up opening (noticable in the 'before' pics) was framed in into an arch opening look, which gives more of an 'entrance' look from the more formal living room into the dining/family room/kitchen area.

Elex takes some video of the Thanksgiving gathering, while our daughter Dawn shows off her engagement ring, passed on to her from Lynne, the same ring her father Glenn had given Lynne many years ago. It's nice to see, in this electronic, computerized era we live in, that there is still the old school sentimental values being passed on.


Mom was feeling pretty good on Thanksgiving Day, and spent most the afternoon at the table, before and after dinner. In these pictures, she's telling Dawn about the escapades of her cat Tinker. It seems that Tinker has discovered that sniffing Mom's oxygen is cool... so cool that he chewed his own opening in Mom's airhose. In the pictures, Mom is showing her granddaughter Dawn the scotch-taped patches she put on the almost new airhose. We told mom we had more hose, but she said, "You just changed it out a couple days ago. It'll be OK for now". I'd bet my Mom woulda said the same thing. You gotta love Moms, yanno?

Sometimes, it doesn't take much for the grandchildren to be entertained. Funny how it always takes much longer to pick up the pieces than it does to get them out...


Whild the turkey was roasting, and despite the 3 inches of rain the previous day, the weather allowed time outside to burn off some energy. The grandsons and Kevin tossed the football around, and even Celeste had fun with their football for a while.

Waiting on the next throw


Celeste, looking for a goal line :)

She also discovered that without too much effort, she could climb up the pond wall and feel how cold the water was!


Turkey time... with a couple of hams carving for us...
Our'shy'?? son Kevin...


And almost equally shy Brother-in-Law Russ

The cats rested after several hard days work alongside me when we were redoing the Family Room...


Before the coastal storm, who's winds even reached this far inland last week, we did have a lot of color in parts of our woodland gardens...

The old and new camellias are getting into full bloom now, while some late blooming summer flowers still won't give up their last color...

It's been a while since we've seen our 'resident' deer around, but I did get this picture of 3 in the yard early in the month...


Lynne's favorite decorating time of year is coming up, and I'm sure she has lots of new and exciting ideas in her mind as the renovated rooms get their final touches on them.

As always, thanks for stopping by. We again ask that you keep our BIL Bobby in your thoughts, and at the same time, have some good thoughts for my Sister Kathy, who will have the barrage of a CAT scan, MRI, and bone scan over the next 10 days, keeping tabs on her sometimes (mostly) in remission breast cancer.

With that, this framed picture of Skittles says...

Life is WONDERFUL here in the Heartland

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving

Here we are once again approaching the holiday season. Thanksgiving is only two days away and Christmas will be here before we even know it. My list of things to be thankful for has not changed much from last year - a very wonderful husband who amazes me more and more everyday - two wonderful children and 4 fantastic grandkids. I am thankful that Mom is still with us yet another year, for friends and extended family. . Once again everyone will be here at the house and Thursday will find the place bustling and all the aromas of a typical thanksgiving dinner. It is fun, I love it and I think that Tom is over that initial shock of family everywhere and the mad chaos that ensues and is looking forward to these holidays.

The work on the house continues and I am very proud of the work we are doing. The place looks so different and is really inviting and open. I am loving it. Of course Tom will be posting pictures of the before and after. We are getting the last minute finishing touches done now and I am getting pictures back up and all the cutsie stuff up on the walls and new built in. My life long dream of a cottage/farmhouse is really taking shape. Hopefully between Thanksgiving and Christmas we can get the kitchen and the pantry area done.

Bobby our BIL has been released from the hospital and is now in the same nursing home that Joyce is in. There has been no decision of any radical treatment for the cancer. From what I understand Bobby pretty much shuts down and won't talk about it. Maybe with him and Joyce being together she can help him to understand exactly what is going on. Please continue to keep them in your prayers. As for life down here Mom is doing good for her age and continues to work on her crafts. She has been asked to make some plastic canvas ornaments for a dear friend of hers up in Wellsboro PA. She is so excited about that. It keeps her busy and keeps her mind alert so that is all good.

We do have some exciting news also - Dawn and Elex are now officially engaged and are planning a May 26th wedding. It will be an exciting winter and spring - maybe I will need to grown a whole bunch of pretty flowers again. Tom amd I managed to pull off one outdoor wedding maybe we will do another *wink*. All the more incentive to get this place done. We are now 4 rooms down with 5 more to go. I may have to put up a bunch of relatives so will need sleeping areas.

That should bring you up to date on life here in the 'Heartland' . We are enjoying life to the fullest and everyday brings new blessings. We truely have so much to be thankful for. Thank you for stopping by and enjoy your Thanksgiving........

Lynne ~~he who plaants a seed - believes in tomorrow~~

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

"Mum"'s The Word

First off, we'd like to thank you for your well wishes for our Brother-in-law, Bobby, and his family. Lynne will be back soon with an update on his condition, but at last report, he had been moved to a regular hospital room to continue recovery.

The last 2 weeks have brought our chrysanthemums into full bloom. Some of most brilliant ones have been from wild native clusters we have. It's an interesting display, because it seems that the amount of sunlight, and what the soil condidions are, determine the color of this native plant. these are all the same plant, with different sun exposures and soil additives.


These mums in the cottage garden were cut down and divided to about 1/6th their size last spring, but even with pruning through the summer, they showed they'll have to be moved next year to a new location...they just took up too much space again!

These have come back from small potted mums from 2 years ago


While these are some of last year's transplants

And, there's some new ones to plant out once the flowers fade.


We've had several new butterflies visit the gardens and especially the mums over the last few weeks. This species, called an ADMIRAL Butterfly, has been around on the warmer days we've had, and seem to like the native mums the best.


As Lynne alluded to, we had a busy weekend with some new friends who were in the area checking out some houses for a possible relocation in the not to distant future. They drove down from New Jersey, and we offered our driveway for them to park their motorhome in while they spent 2 days out and about house-hunting. Of course, the grill got a workout again. Hopefully, the "Groundhog" family will be back to visit again while they relocate. It was great having them here for their brief stay.
The following Sunday, it was PARTY TIME!!!

To celebrate a couple belated birthdays, (John and Celeste's) we had the family over for the afternoon, and it was a beautiful day for the grandchildren to play outside for a couple hours.

While the food was finishing up on the grill, Celeste entertained us on the back porch when she discovered our stash of home grown gourds and the decorative pumpkins :)

After a dinner of ribs and hot wings, it was time for the cake. Mom joined us for a little while, and anxiously awaits her serving.

Celeste and cake seem to go well together, as the pictures below show. I think John kinda likes our new kitten, Skittles, and was trying to show her to Celeste, but she was more interested in her cake and icing :)


Celeste brought her Halloween costume with her, but she didn't seem interested in trying it on for us.


Speaking of Skittles, the other cats are slowly accepting the fact that she's here to stay. It's been an interesting couple weeks, as they slowly adjust to their new 'little sister'.

And, as always, some random shots from around the yard.


Again, we thank you for stopping by and sharing our little slice of life here in the Heartland, as the remodeling continues, and life is Wonderful.