{ Time to move things around }

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If you've known me for a while, you should know that the minute Fall officially comes around, I get right into deep cleaning my home.  With that, also comes the time to move things around.

If you don't know what that means, you're probably wondering what I'm talking about.

I got into the habit, once we moved into this house, to switch the dining area and the sitting area, during the colder times of the year.  We love having dinner by the fireplace, and in the summer, we love having dinner right by the big window, watching the property and the animals outside.

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Yesterday, I managed to get nothing done, due to my allergies.  I was ok in the morning, but as the day went on the allergies increased and I found myself really struggling towards the afternoon.  I would tell you I am so over this nonsense, but I'm sure that would be a waste of time.  If you suffer from allergies, you know what I mean.

As I woke up today feeling much better, I decided to get right into it.  I pretty much worked all day long, took about an hour break in the afternoon to work on the meal plan and grocery pickup, then got right back to it.

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It is a lot of work, a lot of moving, pulling, grabbing, carrying and pushing big furniture around.  But I love seeing it all done and the end result.  It's always worth it.

I did get quite tired, and my hands starting hurting after a while.  I wanted to stop, but I know that if I did, then tomorrow I would not want to get back to it all.  So I finished moving everything where I wanted it to be, and then tomorrow I'll just clean and tidy whatever is still needing work.....the fireplace specifically.

I also managed to carpet clean the room carpets, and both rugs.  Let me tell you, you think your house is clean, until you run your carpet cleaner over one of those rugs, and then want to cry yourself to sleep just seeing how much dirt was still on it.  Don't ask how that is possible, I have no clue because I feel I'm vacuuming and carpet cleaning all week long.  

I guess it's just one of those chores that is never ending.

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The days are getting shorter, and I am already thinking of dinners around the fireplace, with candles glowing nearby.

Hearty soups, slices of fluffy soft apple or pumpkin cake, hot cups of coffee or milky tea and warm blankets draped across our legs, as we turn the page of the book we're reading.

Fall just evokes all these warm feelings of cozy.

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I have a list of fall specific chores that I need done.  One of those being the clean up and harvesting of the last garden produce, so that I can get the fall and winter garden going.

Another of those chores is chopping wood for the fire, which I think Curt and Nick are doing this weekend, and I'll just get it all packed away and ready for use.

I'm also hoping to get all the remaining pecan harvest boiled, dried and in the chest freezer.  I don't think we are getting a pecan harvest this year, since they only produce a harvest every 2 years, and if I'm not mistaken we got a huge one last year.
 
If I'm wrong, you will surely know as you'll no doubt start seeing pecans show up all over my photos.

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That is pretty much all I did today.  I almost didn't take photos, but then I reminded myself that I need to get back to my daily blogging, since I missed a few days last week.  So out came the camera, took just a few to document this day, and even though I don't have much to share with you, or talk about, I still wanted to come in and get a post up.

I hope you're all having a wonderful Tuesday.  I will come around tomorrow, to all the Happy Homemaker Monday participants, to say hi.

But I'm going to end this one right here, as my laptop battery is getting low and I really need to charge it.

Have a great night friends,
Sandra

{ Happy Homemaker Monday - 09/26/2022 }


 
 
Good morning friends, welcome back.   How are you all doing, this last Monday of September?
 
I'm happy that we are quickly moving towards the cooler months, but, I goodness, how is it the last week of September?  
 
The past week has not been a very good one for me, my allergies have been absolutely dreadful.  I've been practically rubbing my eyes, nose, and roof of my mouth, to smithereens, taking my allergy meds, and sleeping on and off.  It's frustrating because I've not been able to get much done, hence the lack of posts since Thursday.
 
But, I'm praying that this week is better, and although the allergies are still here, they're not as horrid as they've been, so I'm hoping they go away.  Irregardless, I will be back to daily posting, which I'm excited about.
 
Hope you all have a wonderful blessed week. 




♥♥ The Weather ♥♥
Still dealing with the heat.  Hoping the temperatures start dropping soon.  G

Monday - Sunny, 89
Tuesday - Sunny, 92
Wednesday - Sunny, 92
Thursday - Sunny, 89
Friday - Sunny, 89
Saturday - Sunny, 89   
Sunday - Sunny, 90



♥♥ As I look outside my window ♥♥
Bright sun streaming through the windows.  Doves flying around the back yard, and the pumpkin patch littered with bright yellow blossoms.     
 


♥♥ Right now I am ♥♥
Sitting on my bed still, working on this post, and finishing the Lori Vallow documentary on Netflix. 



♥♥ Thinking and pondering ♥♥

Just planning the fall and winter garden, what I need to harvest soon, dry, and so forth. 

 

♥♥ How am I feeling ♥♥

I'm doing ok, like I said  above, still dealing with the allergies, but ok overall. 
 


♥♥ On the breakfast plate ♥♥
I've just had a cup of coffee at 6am, but will have another cup later, and not sure what I'll eat for breakfast.  Maybe oatmeal, maybe toast.      
 


♥♥ On the lunch plate ♥♥

Not sure either, but I've been loving salads lately, so may just do a salad.      



♥♥ On the dinner plate ♥♥

Crockpot Turkey Chili, Cornbread.   

 
 
♥♥ What I'm wearing ♥♥
Still in my pajamas for now, but after this post goes up, I will get dressed.  I'm probably just gonna put on a comfy dress for the day.   
 


♥♥ On my reading pile ♥♥

Reading through Isaiah in the Bible.
Paul David Tripp New Morning Mercies devotional.
Morning and Evening Devotional by Charles Spurgeon.   
Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore



♥♥ On my TV this week ♥♥
The Orville - We gave up on Perfect Strangers.  Used to love it when we were young, but now it just seems kinda silly, and not as funny as it used to be.  Really enjoying The Orville, aside from the dumb jokes which seem so out of place.   
Homemaking vlogs
House of Dragons
The Lord of the Rings Series on Amazon Prime
The Serpent Queen
The Great British Bake Off 



♥♥ On the menu ♥♥
Need to start working on the new meal plan, for the next two weeks.  But this is what we are having, until Thursday.
 
Monday - Crockpot Turkey Chili, Cornbread  
Tuesday - Fish Stick Po'Boys, Potato Salad
Wednesday - Beef Filled Crepes, Rice, Salad
Thursday - French Bread Pizzas 
Friday - *Grocery Shopping*
Saturday -
Sunday -



♥♥ Looking around the house ♥♥

I need to vacuum, and tidy up the living rooms.      



♥♥ To Do List ♥♥

- Clean the house, the usual daily chores
- Run downtown for an errand
- Make a Banana Cream Cake
- Start the chili in the crockpot
- Start the meal plan and grocery pickup list


 
♥♥ From the camera ♥♥
Just loving the Fall vibes going on in my home.  
 
 
 


♥♥ Devotional ♥♥ 
True faith lives on the basis of two unshakable realities - that God really does exist and that he always rewards those who seek him.     
 
— New Morning Mercies by Paul David Tripp 



{ Cooking Thursday - Fluffy Hamburger Buns }

 

 
Good morning and welcome back to another Cooking Thursday.
 
I must say, I have really been enjoying posting a recipe every Thursday.  It has made me want to dig into my cookbooks, cook and bake more, and share them here with you.  It keeps me on track, that's for sure.
 
 
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So for today's recipe, I am sharing these amazing, fluffy, delicious hamburger buns, from Alyona Demyanchuk.   I have made many a hamburger buns over the years, but none have ever been so light and fluffy, and so close to store bought, as these are.  They are going to be my go to burger bun.

I hope you enjoy them as much as we did.
 
 
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Fluffy Hamburger Buns
Yield: 32 rolls 

 

Ingredients 
Dough: 
 
2 cups warm water 
4 Tbsp dry yeast 
1/2 cup sugar 
1 Tbsp salt 
2 eggs 
1/2 cup shortening 
6 1/4 cup flour 
 
 
Instructions 
How to Make Hamburger Buns: 
 
 
In a large mixing bowl, dissolve the yeast in warm water. Whisk in the sugar, salt, eggs, and shortening. Stir in the flour and knead 7 minutes. Let rise 30 minutes or until doubled. 
 
Cut dough in half and then cut each half into 16 equal pieces. Roll all 32 pieces into balls and place onto a cookie sheet about 2-inches apart (9 rolls fit into a large 18x13 cookie sheet.) 
 
Let buns rise in the cookie sheet until tripled in size or the size of a hamburger bun. 
 
Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes on the lower rack of the oven.


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{ A quiet Wednesday }

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As Autumn starts coming around the corner, the days are getting darker sooner, and brighter later.  Where the sun used to shine bright well past 9pm, it is now dark around 7:30pm, and no doubt as the days go by, it will get darker and darker.

For some this is the start of a depressing season, darker days, cold mornings, cloudy skies and snowy days bringing in the blues.

But for me, it begins a season of warmth, of slow days, nights sat around the fire, cups of milky tea and shortbread cookies nibbled after being dipped in the hot liquid.

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I absolutely love the slowing down of the summer days.  There is a coziness that seems to be peeking around the corner, just waiting for the busy, activity filled, hot days to disappear so that it can make it's entrance, bringing with it cinnamon scents, pine cones and a sea of candles ready to burn.

I tend to thrive in the cooler months, as crazy as that may sound.  

My days are spent as usual, puttering around with homemaking, baking, reading.  I tend to do all my chores in the early morning, so that the afternoons are for leisure activities, if I so wish.  Not every day goes that way, some days I have more things to do, errands to run or appointments to get to, and on those days I have no time for sitting down.  

So I tend to leave my reading for night time, which is usually a gamble considering by 9pm, I can't keep my eyes open.  

Long gone are the days where I could stay up into the wee hours of the morning.  Now, if I am awake during the night, it is definitely not by choice.

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The death of The Queen, it has catapulted me into another season of period dramas, history lessons and reading anything and everything, that is remotely related to English history.  It's always been a love of mine, but even more so now.

It started with the mention of the lead coffins that the Royals use.  I was talking about it at dinner with the family, and they asked why that was so.  Why were the coffins made decades before, why were the made of oak and why were they lead encased?

The answers is pretty simple.  To keep the body preserved longer.  As with see with royal deaths, the time from their death until they are actually buried, is quite a long period.  If they weren't lead encased, the bodies would decompose quite rapidly.

But, being lead based also means they weigh a lot, like 540 pounds lot.  

It's a tradition that has followed the royals for many years, dating back to Charles II and Elizabeth I.  Fascinating isn't it?

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Anyway, squirrel moment, but back to what I have been watching.  

I finished Becoming Elizabeth, which I really enjoyed and am hoping for a second season.

Over on Youtube, I came across a channel named Royalty Now Studios.  It is such a fascinating channel.  The channel owner, Becca, recreates historical figures in the modern day.  Go on over and take a look, it is so interesting seeing these portraits come alive.

I have also started The Serpent Queen which follows the life of Catherine de Medici.

In between these, as I cook, or do laundry or clean, I usually pop on a documentary.  These are the ones I've watched the past few days:


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I also made some delicious hamburger buns which I'll share in tomorrow's Cooking Thursday.

I have tried many recipes over the years, but this one is a winner.  They are soft, fluffy, they are even wrinkly like the store bought hamburger buns.  Delicious.

I sure hope you are taking the time to welcome in Fall in all it's glory.  Enjoy every minute, every degree that drops in temperature, every leave that dances down off the branches and every sunset that bathes the earth in golden tones.  

I know, I will be enjoying it.

{ A day spent fighting allergies and looking through cookbooks }

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Could we all just take a moment to welcome in Fall?  With big wide open arms.

Although, apparently Fall in Texas is slightly confused with summer.  Just ask the 100 degree temperature we're feeling.  Sometimes I want to go outside, and just yell out "ENOUGH!".  
 
But I doubt that would do anything, other than bring in some unwarranted attention from neighbors
 

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The allergies have been at their worst.  Of course!  I'm sure it is because the other day I said to Curt, that I was doing so well and hadn't had allergy attacks in a while.  Sometimes I wonder why I open my mouth, I should already know that whatever I say, is going to come back to bite me in the behind.

I'm not the only one though, everyone in our area is suffering with them.  

But for me, they get so bad, that nothing seems to help, aside from taking a pink little Benadryl pill.  It knocks me out within 20 minutes, and therefore gives me some reprieve.  Problem is, it also makes me quite groggy for a couple of hours, and I don't like that feeling at all.

So today, was pretty much a useless day.  I got nothing done, other than nod off constantly, wake up feeling groggy, walk around and get some daily household chores done, and just look through some of my cookbooks.
 

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So that's what I leave you with, just some quick shots of the cookbooks I was looking through.  Hope you enjoy.

As for me, I'm headed back to my bed.  I can't wait for this groggy feeling to subside. 

{ Happy Homemaker Monday - 09/19/2022 }

 

 
Good morning everyone, welcome back to my little corner here on the web.  
 
I have been up since 5am, watching The Queen's funeral, which has been so beautifully done, so touching.  Many may wonder why some care about such things, but I've always had a huge love for England (don't ask me why, I have no clue), but aside from that I think this is an historic moment that not many of us have ever witness, nor will ever witness again in our lives.  
 
Anyway, that's what I've been doing, but while the coffin makes it's way to Windsor for the final burial, I am going to get this post up and start my day.  If I just watch TV, I will get nothing done.  
 
Today also marks 24 years, since I first arrived in this beautiful land that I call home.  Thank you Lord, so much, for all my blessings.  This past weekend, Friday to be exact, also marked one year since I became a US Citizen.  Very grateful indeed ♥



♥♥ The Weather ♥♥
Gross, just gross.  Does that tell you enough?  We had wonderful rain, lower temperatures and now are back in the high 90s and even hitting triple digits again.   

Monday - Abundant sunshine, 99
Tuesday - Sunny, 98
Wednesday - Sunny, 98
Thursday - Sunny, 96
Friday - Sunny, 98
Saturday - Sunny, 100  <----------- WHY?!?!?
Sunday - Partly cloudy, 94



♥♥ As I look outside my window ♥♥
Bright sun, blue skies, not a bit of a breeze in sight.  I can see green grass, and gorgeous pumpkin blossoms clinging onto the fence.   
 


♥♥ Right now I am ♥♥
I just got dressed for the day, and made the bed.  I am working on this post, watching the Queen's funeral on the telly, and watching Kaia and Elliott laying on the bed relaxing. 



♥♥ Thinking and pondering ♥♥

About the magnitude of what we are seeing on TV.  I love history and I have often wondered what it would have been like to be a bystander in all of these big historic moments.  To know that I am alive right now, watching this all unfold, first hand, is just beyond anything I would have imagined.
 
I have never understood why I have such a strong pull to England.  There have been moments where I have even felt almost homesick for a country I have never visited.  It's strange. 
 


♥♥ How am I feeling ♥♥

Pretty well, other than the usual allergies being a pain.  It's something we are all struggling with in our area, just seems to be pretty bad allergy wise at the moment.   
 


♥♥ On the breakfast plate ♥♥
I had a huge cup of coffee, and a breakfast burrito.     
 


♥♥ On the lunch plate ♥♥

I have a ton of bananas that Jasmine brought home from work on Thursday.  I love smoothies, so for the next week or so, my lunches will consist of smoothies.  Banana, blueberries, spinach and anything else I can pop in there.     



♥♥ On the dinner plate ♥♥

Creamy Bratwurst, Mashed Potatoes, Brussels Sprouts.  

 
 
♥♥ What I'm wearing ♥♥
Shorts and a tshirt.   
 


♥♥ On my reading pile ♥♥

Reading through Isaiah in the Bible.
Paul David Tripp New Morning Mercies devotional.
Morning and Evening Devotional by Charles Spurgeon.   
Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore



♥♥ On my TV this week ♥♥
Perfect Strangers - Hubby and I just started this one last night 
Homemaking vlogs
House of Dragons
The Lord of the Rings Series on Amazon Prime
The Serpent Queen
The Great British Bake Off 



♥♥ On the menu ♥♥
 
Monday - Creamy Bratwurst, Mashed Potatoes, Brussels Sprouts  
Tuesday - Cheesy Tuna Pasta Bake, Salad
Wednesday - Ono's Hawaiian Chicken, Ono's Macaroni Salad 
Thursday - Carne de panela, Arroz, Feijao (Beef tips, rice and beans)
Friday - Instant Pot Alfredo Pasta, Pull Apart Pepperoni Garlic Knots, Salad
Saturday - Creamy Oregano Chicken, Egg Noodles
Sunday - Fish Stick Po' Boys, Potato Salad



♥♥ Looking around the house ♥♥
I can say that the only room that really needs some tidying up, is the kitchen.  The rest of the house is clean and tidy.    



♥♥ To Do List ♥♥

- Iron Curt's work shirts
- Water veggie garden
- Exercise
- Make a Victoria Sponge Cake


 
♥♥ From the camera ♥♥
Our biggest pumpkin so far, is the size of a baseball.  I just love seeing the seeds we plant, turn into food we will eat.
 



♥♥ Devotional ♥♥ 
Corporate worship is designed to make you thankful, not just for possessions and accomplishments, but for what you've been given in Christ.   
 
— New Morning Mercies by Paul David Tripp  


{ When your body says stop....just listen }

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A very non productive Saturday.

I had all these plans, these things I wanted to get done.  Then my body got in the way.  More specifically my hands.  
 
I am pretty sure I am getting arthritis in my fingers.  It's been about a year since I first noticed it, it started with one finger, and now I have 4 affected.

It's not too bad for the most part, but there are days that I overwork my hands, and then have to stop, so a lot of what I wanted to get done outside, just didn't work today.

And that's ok.  As we get older, we learn to listen to our body, and take cues of when to stop or when to slow down.  Our bodies are our best friends, but often times we ignore them because we think we know better.

Let's just say I got a non requested crash course in listening.  Hahah

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I got out into the garden early this morning, to water it.  We had cool temperatures and rain two weeks ago, but we are back to high temps, hitting 100 and really hot weather, which leaves our garden parched for water.

Even still, we are enjoying seeing our harvest come to life.

We have a ton of tiny pumpkins, but this is the only big baseball size one, we have.  I'm pretty sure we probably have a few more hidden beneath the jungle of big leaves, but I haven't ventured in to take a look, for fear that I'll accidentally step on a vine.

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We also have a few golf ball sized watermelons running through the ground.  I am so beyond excited, but I don't know if they will grow fully before the frost season starts.  I think they will only, because we are still seeing such hot temperatures, but we will see.

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While in the garden I came across this plant on the ground.  I have no idea what it is, so if you do, please let me know.  I don't know if it's poisonous or not, and really don't want anything around that Kaia can get into.

The little flowers look like bells.

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Then I stopped for a moment to watch the ants at my feet.  Have you ever stopped to watch them?  They're quite fascinating.  They have this methodical way of moving, like they all know where to go, what to do, and what to grab.  I just love watching them.

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I watered my roses, took a moment to inhale their wonderful aroma, and then came back inside where I proceeded to read a bit more, and also watch the coverage of the Queen lying in State.

I have found this all so fascinating as well.  For a huge history buff such as myself, I feel like I am part of history, watching a truly historic moment before my eyes.  

From the changing of the guards around her majesty's coffin, to her children standing vigil, and then her 8 grandchildren standing vigil, as well.  It's quite touching to see.

I fully intend to watch her funeral on Monday.  I just keep thinking, I will never again witness something as this, and how blessed are we to be here in this moment in time, to be a part of history?

Count your blessings friends, every day.  There is always something to be thankful and grateful for.

{ This home that I love }

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Do you ever just stop and look around your home, your property, your life, and think "I wouldn't want to be anywhere else, I love my life"?

It's easy to get caught up in every day, and to forget to look around, and to be thankful for what you have.  I learned a few years ago, to thank God constantly, for everything, even those little things that we think He surely wouldn't care about.

But He does.  See He cares about everything that has to do with us, the big things, the little things, the important things, the mundane....all of it.  
 
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I started my day in the kitchen, early, getting a batch of cinnamon rolls into the oven.  Most days, breakfast is more along the lines of a piece of toast, some cereal or oatmeal.  Whatever is quicker and at hand.  But sometimes, it's good to take the extra effort, to prepare a special treat for the family.

It's all about getting organized, and if you learn how to organize your time, you will be surprised at how much you can accomplish in just a few hours.

But, as I sat making the cinnamon rolls, the washer drumming a beat in the background with a load of laundry, the pets playing with pieces of ice, and the steam of my coffee cup rising ever so gently, I felt this overwhelming feeling of gratitude, of contentment, of pure joy.

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The kind of feeling you wish you could bottle up, for those days where you're lacking joy, lacking motivation and just not feeling it.  And yes, we all have those days, those moments of sheer irritation that creep up on you, that make you snap at everyone and everything around you.  

I actually get on my own nerves on days like that.  Here's the kicker though, I can't get away from my own attitude, so I have to get through it, and change it.  Oof, it's not easy, but it's doable.

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I pottered around the kitchen, sipped my coffee while the cinnamon rolls baked, replied to family member messages, switched laundry from the washer to the dryer, all while sporting a lazy smile on my face.

As the cinnamon rolls came out of the oven, the smell was incredible.  It's the smell of an Autumn morning, cinnamon and spice, coffee, all the wonderful scents that set your senses on high alert.

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The kids came out of their rooms, gathered in the kitchen, and in between huge bites of gooey cinnamony goodness, chatted, with each other and with me.

I sat back for a second and watched them.  My 23 year old and my 19 year old, just chatting, laughing, egging each other on.  At that very moment, I had a pang of hurt in my heart, a want and need to deep to turn back the time, to go back to when they were toddlers running around my legs.  

We all want our children to grow, to become adults, to be successful, and then they get there and we start feeling like we want to pull them all the way back and do it again

I often see moms online complaining about their children, about the mess they create in their picture perfect living rooms.  How they are exhausted and wish they would just be older to take care of themselves.

I'm here to tell you that while I myself had those thoughts once or twice, back in the day, I regret it so much.  Because......well because you wish their childhood away, and because those toys you trip on today, will be the toys you wish you could trip on years from now.

I long for the chaotic home of runny noses, toys strewn all around the living room floor, tousled hair, tight hugs, and fingers stained with strawberries and blueberries that were enjoyed as a snack.

I'm in a different season of life now.  I no longer run after little feet.  My days consist of taking care of our home, running errands, cooking and running after Jesus.  I guess in a way we spend our lives running, running from things, running after things.

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Most days now, you will find me in this little spot.  It's become my reading nook, right next to one of the big bookshelves.  After the housework is done, I grab a small blanket, a good book, and sit and read for at least an hour.  There is always a cup of milky tea next to me, and sometimes a few shortbread cookies.

I used to dislike the quiet, it reminded me too much of the noise of children that no longer were around.  But God has taught me to enjoy the quiet, to use it to  my advantage, to read, to relax, to be thankful that our children are grown, healthy and happy.

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As I sit and enjoy the view from my reading nook, I smile, again, because I am where I never thought I would be, just led by God's hand.  We never in our lives thought or even considered living in Texas, it was not something in our plans.  

But then our plans are not God's plans, and He always knows where we belong, even if we don't.

Today, I am so thankful, so blessed to live in Texas, in this beautiful house, on this gorgeous property.  Feeling pure contentment and joy.  It's a great feeling to have.

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