Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Monday, November 23, 2009

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday's = Do-Nut Days!

One of the perks to living in G'ville is having Shipley's Do-Nuts. So those that know me best, know this is a good thing for me. I LOVE Do-Nuts. And Shipley's is my all time favorite with Krispy Kreme being my least favorite. When I was at Mississippi College and when we used lived in Raymond, I enjoyed Shipley's in Clinton. I've heard rumors that this Shipley's in G'ville is supposed to serve the best Do-Nuts of all Shipley's. Now, why that is, I don't know.
I am making a tradition out of Shipleys. Every Friday, the boys and I will go after I pick them up from school and enjoy our favorite Shipley Do-Nuts. I've been instructed by BB to bring Sutffins on these days b/c he likes Do-Nuts too. They even have small cartons of chocolate milk (BB) and strawberry milk (CB). This is the only time CB will drink his strawberry milk cold unlike his daily dose in the morning that has to be heated for 50 seconds in order for him to drink it.

I typically vary in my options. I enjoy the do-nut holes, a cinnamon twists, or a bear claw along with a small carton of chocolate milk. I just can't pass up a good Do-Nut no matter what diet I am on.
It's definitely not in an upscale building that would make one think these do-nuts were made by some famous french pastry chef nor was it built to meet certain codes or to impress passer-by's. It's just an old fashion do-nut shop. But you know the old fashion adds to the nostalgia of the experience. Besides, it's not the building that makes them taste so good.
As usual, the boys asked this morning..."What day is today?" "It's Friday." "Is today Do-Nut day?" And as excited as they are to hear "YES", I am just as excited to answer "YES!"

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

House Hunters

Do you ever watch HGTV? Do you know that show House Hunters and House Hunters International? Well, I feel like I've been the star of both for the past 6 months. Although, we are still domestic and not hunting up here has seemed "foreign" at times. Some of the layouts of the houses are just different and didn't always make sense. There is NO new construction and it's not nearly as residential as back home. This along with the economy and some of our "must haves" in a house has made house hunting a little more difficult for us and I'm sure our realtor.

JB and I have been house hunting for the past 6 months to no avail. The houses we have viewed have either not met our needs, needed MAJOR updating/renovations/remodeling, priced at more than were willing to spend or had been flooded within the last few years. Oh, there were several houses that I viewed and loved with everything I wanted and more...but the asking prices was more than we were willing to pay in such an unstable economy and housing market.

One of the conditions JB and I held tight to, was to either have a 4th bedroom or at least a bonus room to allow for a guest bedroom or my sewing room. In Madison, our 3rd bedroom was my sewing room which didn't allow for a guest room. We would play fruit basket turnover when JB's mom would visit. Don't get me wrong...we enjoyed the visits and she would always insist to sleep on the couch..but I just couldn't conscientiously let my dear mother in law sleep on the couch while visiting. It would make me feel like a terrible host. Anyway, a 4th bedroom or bonus room is a 'must have' while living in G'ville.

I had been praying that God would just give us both (and I emphasize BOTH) that feeling of "this is the one" when looking at houses. Brides, you know that feeling you got when you tried on THE dress. Spouses, know that feeling you got when you were dating and God revealed to you that he or she is THE one. Well, that's the feeling I had been praying for from God. I didn't want to buy a house out of desperation. I didn't want to "settle" on a house because I hadn't either looked long enough or waited on God. I didn't want to buy a house just because I liked it no matter the cost or other financial aspects. But after 6 months of looking, I began to feel desperate, unsettled and impatient with myself and God. You know living in a small, 2 bedroom apartment with 4 year old twins can do that to you and Satan plays that to his advantage.

Last Wednesday night, our realtor showed us a house that met our needs. It had 4 bedrooms and was actually move in ready. It had been totally remodeled. But there were some of those layout issues that we would see in other houses that just didn't sense and didn't make this house "the one". However, JB and I were seriously gonna consider the house. It was well below the price were willing to pay and we already have several friends that live in the neighborhood. We thought with a little more TLC we can settle and make this house work.

After viewing that particular house, JB and I were leaving the neighborhood and noticed a sign at another house "For Sale by Owner" that had not been up the few days before. But it didn't have a number to call.

I talked JB into going to the door and inquiring. They immediately allowed us to view the home. We both left with that feeling of this is THE ONE. This is the house for us. This house meets our needs, it's move in ready, it has the layout we need and like, it has been well kept, it's in a very family oriented neighborhood, we already have friends in this neighborhood, etc. However, when we asked the dreaded question of wasn't so cut and dry at first. The couple was a little hesitant on the price due to some issues they were trying to work out. Also, there was another couple that had scheduled to view the house with a realtor the following Friday. This realtor had told the sellers that this couple would absolutely love this house and be willing to pay top listing price. So we would have to wait until Friday after this other couple viewed the house and made a decision in order for us to get a listing price. JB and I had our doubts of getting the house and we new that we weren't willing to accept the 1 offer they had given us. It was just too high but thought if the other couple was willing to accept the price, then it wasn't the house God had for us. And we certainly wasn't going to get in the middle of a bidding war.

Friday came around and they called us with another offer much better and more concise than the 1st. JB and I wanted my parents to see it and have the weekend to pray and think about it. We countered on Monday and with a few negotiations they accepted our final offer. The contract was signed last night, Monday evening.

The sellers are actually moving back to TX this Thursday so they are ready and need to be rid of the house. We were in their shoes when selling our home in Madison just 6 months ago. So far, they have been a pleasure to work with. When telling our story to her about house hunting, she empathised with me. They were in our position about 3 years ago when they moved here. She said that this house had been "The One" for them and she wished she could take it to TX with her.

Although, we haven't closed yet and there is much to be done til then (we are shooting for Dec. 21). I have given God (in my human way) permission to stop this deal if it's not the house for us. So for the next 30 days til closing, I am requesting prayer that this process continues to go smoothly for us and the sellers. There can be lots of doubts, chaos and confusion when closing on a house...inspection, appraisals, etc and mix that in with the upcoming holiday festivities and busyness, there can be even more. But so far, God has revealed the confirmations and affirmations I need to feel a peace about this house. We look forward to what He has in store for us as we hope to make this house our home.

I'll keep you posted on the progress. Until then,

Monday, November 2, 2009

HalloWeek 2009

The week of Halloween was busy for us. You will notice that the boys are wearing their Roll Tide uniforms again this year. I asked continually what they wanted to be this year...and they both replied..Roll Tide football players. JB was a proud pappa. Plus, I didn't mind not having to put another costume together and we really got our money's worth out of these outfits.

It started the Sunday before at my parent's church's fall festival. We made a very impromptu trip home to enjoy the festivities. The boys played games, ate hotdogs, and collected many festival treats. I think they mostly enjoyed spending the time with their cousins, Abbey and Alex. You will see that most of our Halloween activities include them. Note...BB did dress up as a pirate for this event only. After these festivities, we stayed the night at my parent's. Abbey and Alex came over for awhile. The fun continued with roasting marshmallows in my parent's wood burning stove. I am grateful to JB for understanding my need to go home even for impromptu trips. The boys missed school the next day but he even understood that it will not always be like this. These types of trips help get me through another week and help the adjust to this move.

The Wednesday before, we enjoyed FBC G'ville's fall festival. Again, the boys enjoyed many games, hotdogs, and popcorn. We finished the night with Waffle Cone Wednesday at the local TCBY.

The Friday before, my dad came up to G'ville to look at a couple of houses that might be possibilities. We all then enjoyed a Halloween Party at the boys' school. Unfortunately it rained all day so what would have normally included outside activities had to be cancelled and adapted to indoor fun. The boys and I went home with my dad Friday afternoon. JB came up on Saturday morning. We did most of Christmas shopping all day Saturday.

Saturday evening we took the boys Trick or Treating in a local neighborhood. My sister, Tiffany and her girls joined us also. Again, the boys loved being with their cousins. I have to brag on Alex. She is the best big sister to Abbey and the best big cousin to the boys. She is so patient and loving to them regardless of her older age. Before trick or treating with their cousins, we stopped by Aunt Angie's apartment for some candy. The boys loaded up on their favorite candy.

We came back to G'ville Sunday afternoon after lunch with Aunt Angie. It was busy but fun week and weekend.

This past weekend is 1 of many busy weekends to come. I have recently bought a new camera so hopefully I'll be posting more pics.