Wednesday, June 12, 2024

June Birthdays and a Little Thinking Back to 2014

This is mostly going to be a post for me to record the June birthdays in our family. However, I will reminisce for a second. I remembered after my last post that the date June 6 was important to me in other ways. I did a post on June 7th of my first year of this blog recording a very special day in my life --- retirement from 31 years of teaching and noting that my last official day of work was June 6, 2014. I took a moment to reread the things I did in June that year. Along with celebrating family birthdays, a trip to the beach was taken and then I painted the kitchen and the dining room all in June and July. Many plans for my life were swirling in my head. I will just go ahead and say quickly many of those plans did not come to fruition, but I was not imagining grandchildren and what a blessing they have been.

I was thinking the other day how I should probably change my tag line for the blog....

A blog about decorating, stitching, baking, gardening, family and walking a faith-filled journey.

I am not sure I am living up to that tag line at all!

I do not plan to change it. It is what I thought the blog would be and maybe one day it will be... 
It is mostly a small glimpse into my little corner of the world. I do like to record my stitching and the highlight reel of my family. We are not perfect as a family, nor does everything work hunky dory in our lives and a blog can be a highlight reel that can make one think otherwise.

I am still a fan of blogs more than any other medium although time is limited at this stage of my life. For now, I will plod along with the tag line as it is.

My sidekick sitting on an old comforter in the sewing room while I stitch. The comforter has been with us for almost 40 years. I bought it at Sears and it was my most favorite comforter I have ever purchased. Feel and weight were perfect. It just got old and faded and the stitching sort of gave out so it is a dog blanket these days. I think Gus likes it too.

Gus, Jeff, and Paul Allen have June birthdays. Can y'all believe Gus is already 7 years old.

Ok ---birthdays. I have had to let the birthdays being rolled into one celebration as the family grows. We choose a weekend also to celebrate so all the littles can stay on their schedules. The kids all arrived early to swim while I took Mother to urgent care. 

I stayed calm and we stayed out of the ER. She rolled herself into the living room before Jeff and I got Gus put in his kennel box and proceeded to talk to him which she never does. He got all excited and scratched her arm. It peeled the skin back. Her skin is like tissue paper and skin tears like this have happened twice before. They always seem to happen at the worst times. All is well now and home health is doing the wound care so I don't have to worry about that. I mostly took live shots so here is the recording of life after I arrived home from urgent care Sunday afternoon.

Lots of fun was had by all. Tucker can now jump off the end of the dock with his floaties on of course. I think he felt very comfortable with Paul Allen being there to catch him. Tyler missed the event. Work got him and he didn't make it. We were sad, but he was too.
 Palmer and Miles also jumped off with Katie and Paul Allen catching them, so not a full fledge head under, but still quite a big deal. Palmer is not so impressed yet and only did it because Miles did it first. And getting pulled around on a giant llama is fun too. 

We had fried fish which the guys had to cook. We do it outside so we don't have that mess inside. Cheese grits and salad were enjoyed too. I made 2 desserts on Saturday that matched the days when we used to have 2 separate parties for both guys. Don't worry, Gus got celebrated too! I made a yellow cake with the fudgy icing and a strawberry pretzel salad. Both were hits.

The pictures show the mess too, but sometimes the pictures like that are the best kind. All the bloggers who showed perfect pictures have gone on to make money and left blogging. We will just go back to the old days when it was fun before it got crazy.

Miles is exuberant when the other 2 show up. He loves for them to come over.

Next up, notice Miles has his head in a plate. He had just received his piece of cake and we laughed later looking at the picture because I don't think any of us realized he was doing this for the picture.

He popped up to jump in the picture of Mom and Lindsay. Notice her bandaged arm...

We had fun celebrating and then relaxing in the living room. While my plans were so different back in 2014, how could I ever say anything but good when my family has grown and gifted me with such special time with the boys.

A group hug was in order to leave.


Now, for an update on Jeff. The surgery has been canceled as of yesterday. His back is better and not hurting, so it has been decided to wait until it happens again. He has spent almost 5 months miserable and then the nail event happened. It has been quite a ride for him. The nail hole is almost healed. He had his last injection today. It has not fully closed up so the last injection was a different antibiotic and is supposed to continue working for 2 more weeks. He will still go in twice a week to check and redo bandage. He is still limited on the walking on it but he can ride his bike.

It has been a crazy few months. CRAZY, I say.
I am making it and have prioritized some self care for me. I have had 3 beach days since the beginning of June and enjoyed every single one of them. I am sure most of you have read about the shark attacks. Sharks are there!!! I never swim in the Gulf. I never go in more than mid calf deep, but what happened last Saturday is odd. I always see people being so brave with the water and you want to tell them to think about things, but they would think you were crazy. I try to just let it go. You don't live along the coast not to have heard of so many drownings and yes, shark attacks. When the kids were in high school, a 14 year old girl from Louisiana died from a shark attack in Destin. It was awful. That is not what one expects on a vacation. 

Let's end on a happier note.
I do plan to come back next week with a post of thoughts on all kinds of topics and some stitching. 
Until then, enjoy the summer. I know I am!!!



  1. Great family times and I love the photos in the kitchen with all the "mess" that just shows the fun and love!! The boys are growing so fast! Your mom looks great, and those pictures of her with the kiddos are keepers for sure. You are doing an incredible job, Sandy, and your beach days are well-earned and so necessary!! Take care of yourself as you so beautifully care for your loved ones!! Hugs!!

    1. Thanks. Sometimes I like those real life pictures the best. Mom is doing well for 89. Honestly other than stuff like Sunday she is in better health than most.

  2. What a wonderful assortment of family photos and journaling, Sandy! Thank you for sharing the "mess" along with the happy times. Personally, I like how you include it all! I hope your Mother's arm heals quickly. I wouldn't change the tag line. Enjoy your Thursday!

  3. Your June is like our December with all the birthdays. I am glad you were able to pop into urgent care for your mama. Prayers that Jeff has complete healing and the back pain will be gone for good!!

  4. Urgent care is such a great alternative to the ER.

    So thankful to hear the update on Jeff. I had been praying for the upcoming surgery, but am so thankful to hear it is cancelled for now and his back is not hurting him. I do pray for you and your family every Tuesday.

    The photos with a bit of a festive mess in the background are good. This is real life we are living and I for one am unapologetic about that.

    Your tag line is just right. I would keep it!

    1. Thank you. I kind of miss the old days of blogging when you didn't even have to post a picture and more real life photos occurred, but hey, I am going to do my best to keep that kind of blog going.

  5. What happy news that Jeff has improved enough to have his surgery cancelled! I was all prepared to pray about that on the day of and now this good report!!!

    So sorry about the injury to your mother's arm. I (at age 74) have had a couple of similar dog-scratch injuries. The wounds shocked me as to how not-resilient my skin has become! I recovered, probably faster than an older person, but it still took more time than I expected.

    As for the birthday pictures -- what a hoot! The real-life snapshots really do tell the story! From times spent with g-kids, I know (and can read between the lines) how all that went. So glad you all get along so well and can make these wonderful memories.

    I'm glad you've been able to do some self-care. Especially when life demands so much of us, we really benefit if we are intentional about caring for ourselves.

    Yes, we've heard about the sharks on your coast (and other places). I won't even get my feet wet any more, but then, it's rare I even have the opportunity to make that choice. Gary is not a beach person.

    Blessings to you!

  6. I am sorry to hear about your Mom's arm tear. I know that was upsetting for all of you, but it happens. Glad you were able to get her taken care of quickly and still make it back to be with the family. I LOVE all the happy family photos. Messy is's called LIFE!!! People with perfect houses and staged photos are missing the real importance of living. Sometimes I do stage things for photos, but I love the ones with family the best. That is what makes our house a home! Thank you for sharing your life with us. Praying for all of the stuff that is going on. Glad you can have some "sanity" time just for you now and then. That is important! This was a wonderful post. Thank you.

  7. Well, it sounds like maybe your husband stepping on those nails and the surgery being postponed because of them may have been a blessing in disguise. That's wonderful that he is doing better. And your poor mom--I remember that papery skin on my mom's arms and legs, too. It is just so easy to be torn or bruised. I'm glad she managed to avoid the ER. Looks like a wonderful birthday celebration--love that you made strawberry pretzel salad. That is a standard Thanksgiving/Christmas side for our meals, but I really should make it in the summer, too. Everyone adores it :) And I can totally relate to the mess in the kitchen when the gang is all there--it would be weird if it was all spic and span! Hope you get some more "me" time as the month progresses, Sandy! Enjoy your weekend ♥

  8. Sandy, I like your perspective of our blogs providing highlight reels of our lives. What a bunch of wonderful family pictures from your June birthday celebration - made as the fun is happening. Those grandboys are just the cutest! I didn't even notice any mess until you mentioned it, then I had to laugh at what you wrote: All the bloggers who showed perfect pictures have gone on to make money and left blogging."

    So glad to read that Jeff's back is better. But ouch! to your mom's arm injury. Such an innocent thing can cause so much damage. I'm glad she's on the mend, too. I hope you get more beach days this summer! Sounds like a perfect way to recharge for a girl who loves summer. :)


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