Friday, February 27, 2009


It's a rainy night in Georgia and I'm taking a quick break to say hello and catch you up a bit. As you can imagine, it's been a busy week with lots of errands to run and things to do at home to get ready to leave. Hamp's flight arrived right before the heavy rain began and we are very thankful for that.

As the afternoon progressed, his hoarse voice was joined by coughing and sneezing and he went to bed early not feeling well. I don't feel 100% right this minute but can't decide if I'm just tired, paranoid, getting sick too, or all of the above!

The weather forecast isn't terribly encouraging for the weekend ahead. Fortunately, we can back the U-Haul to the edge of the garage and get it loaded without anybody or anything getting wet. As of right now, we plan to leave Monday and unless I can talk Hamp into heading south, we'll be heading toward the winter affected northeast. Should it be too windy to drive the truck or one of us is not well enough to drive, we may have to wait a day. I'll keep you posted!!

On a little brighter note, spring really is coming according to the calendar and my yard. Earlier this week, I captured this picture of the jonquils in my yard (or daffodils if you didn't grow up in Smyrna, GA).

After some sun and warmth and a little rain, this was what they looked like this morning.

An obvious analogy could be gleaned from the lyrics of the song, "Bloom Again" by Charlie Hall that I've shared with you before. The chorus says, "Oh, the leaves are falling, winter is now here, the spring is coming...and you will bloom again". But the reality right now is "Oh, the rain is falling, winter is still here, the wind is coming...and you will freeze again". So maybe I'll just leave the philosophical concluding to others more qualified than myself for now.....

Just to throw it out there - how long has it been since you've had to gather your life together in a compact, relatively portable state? While it's a stressful, emotional, and tiring task, I have found the necessary reorienting to be ultimately a positive thing. That is why we decided to move to Baltimore in the first place when the job opportunity came along. That perspective has left me in recent weeks which has made the impending departure more difficult. But God is always good and always faithful and I'm ready to see what He has prepared for me and Hamp for this season of our lives.

Earlier this week I needed the use of the "undo" button on my computer several times. I thought about how that could prove very useful if it was available in everyday life at times. Then that led me to think about being undone which reminded me of the song by that title that Mercy Me recorded a few years back. I looked up the words and found they speak better than I could as to the state of my heart. This is the end of the first verse, followed by the chorus.

When I am overwhelmed
Holding pieces of my heart
When I feel my world
Start to fall apart

To the cross I run
Holding high my chains undone
Now I am finally free
Free to be what I've become

Hopefully tomorrow will find us more rested, maybe a little healthier, and more energetic. If not, we'll be dismantling our bedroom and packing anyway, so if we come to mind, all prayers are welcome!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009


Good Sunday evening to you! There is so much I want to share with you and yet am finding that I really don't have the words to begin. That reminds me of a great quote I heard this morning in church - "It is better for your heart to be without words than for your words to be without heart". Maybe I can do both.....

I guess the biggest news for me is that I am leaving for Baltimore next Monday to join Hamp there. He will fly in on Friday, we'll rent a small U-Haul for the few things we're taking, go to church on Sunday, load my car with me and Kit the cat on Monday, and begin our caravan after Hamp finishes with a meeting he has scheduled. We're going to take two days so all of us can be a little less frazzled on the journey and the goal is to arrive Tuesday early afternoon.

To say that "I'm moving" doesn't seem accurate because most of our belongings are staying behind in the house so it will continue to show well and hopefully sell. I haven't felt like this is home, though, because Hamp has been in Baltimore and we haven't been able to do life together except for snatches here and there for a while now. Because of that, I'm ready for this next step while at the same time experiencing all of the emotions you would expect.

Along with all that's happening with us, Tiffany has some exciting news that you can read about here. Of course, that means even more change which can be hard for this mom's heart sometimes. I had a moment this afternoon as I realized that it was exactly two years ago today that Jeff left. Just typing the words brings tears to my eyes - in sadness over the loss and in awe over God's faithfulness to us all. Another quote from church this morning was "We can't start over, but we can start again". I can't wait to see what God has for Tiffany as He ends yet another chapter and begins a new one.

So what does this week hold? Way too much!! While I'm not really saying "goodbye", there are a few people I need to see. There is cleaning, sorting, packing, and rearranging to be done in the house along with personal and move-related paperwork that I'm convinced won't end until I see Jesus someday.

Your prayers for us all are greatly appreciated and we will keep you updated as the days unfold.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Greetings, everyone! This has been a very difficult week that has found my thoughts and emotions very disjointed and unpredictable. I think the primary reason has been because we've realized it's time for me to head to Baltimore to join Hamp in life there, so we're looking at that happening at the end of the month.

Obviously, I'm ready to be with him but the finality of leaving is beginning to hit me. Well, as final as it can be and still have the house here. We've had good response so far and prospective buyer #8 is coming in the morning to see it. It looks like in order to sell it, though, we're probably going to have to replace the polybutylene pipes inside which will be a royal pain in the...... (You should be very impressed that I can spell polybutylene and I even know what it is and why it needs replaced)! Hopefully, that can be worked into a contract somehow and be done with the house empty or at least close to it.

We've had some really nice spring days recently and Kit and I went outside one afternoon to enjoy the sunshine. I discovered an entrance to the home of the cute little chipmunk that likes to dig in my flower pots. Kit really didn't seem to mind sharing the area.

While it's about to get cold again, there are signs that spring is not far away. I'm sharing these mostly for Tiffany who won't see flowers where she is for a while yet.

High school basketball season is winding down with the region playoffs going on this week. Matthew is the assistant boys coach of the varsity team at Harrison and I've been going to the games. It's hard to take pictures when you want to be discreet since the "child" I want pictures of is one of the coaches. :) But having a good zoom lens is helpful, so this is some of what I've seen twice a week for several weeks now.

Hamp got to come home for Valentine's weekend and while we did get to enjoy some time together, there is always something to be done.

After picking him up from the airport, we went to Newnan to have lunch with his parents and his older brother and only sister got to join us as well.

Kit enjoys having people around she can snuggle with and get cat hair all over and when Hamp was working on something with a flashlight, he stopped and played her favorite game - chase the light!

I think as I get older, I see more and more the seasons of life that Solomon wrote about in Ecclesiastes 3. There really is a time for everything and it feels like I'm experiencing a lot of them at the same time. There's a time to plant and uproot, kill and heal, weep and laugh, embrace and shun embracing, search and give up as lost, and keep and throw away. Whether it's material possessions or relationships, the nature of life is that it's always changing. Sometimes, there's death, but with Christ as our hope, there will always be life.

I got to hold a newborn baby today that was only 2 hours old. (Congratulations Hannah and Jaq - baby Grant is beautiful)! I suppose there's no better way to be reminded that life does go on; it just might not look like you want it to.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Where Did The Week Go?

This week has flown by and I don't even really have anything to show for the time gone. It took a couple of days to rest from the trip to Disney and then between errands and life happening, all of a sudden here it is Thursday.

I did want to recap last week a little bit. If you read here regularly, then I'm sure you've seen Tiffany's blog where most of the pictures were posted so I'm not going to repeat them all here. Instead you get my perspective from the time we had together.

Even though it was cold the first two days we went to the parks, there's just something magical about going to Disney World.

Whether you're 3 or 31, it's fun to be somewhere that makes you feel like you're special.

On Wednesday, we went to Epcot for most of the day and then went to the Magic Kingdom until it got too cold to stay.

On Thursday, we started the day at Animal Kingdom and again finished the last couple of hours at the Magic Kingdom. We got to see some of the animals sunning themselves in the early afternoon warmth on the safari ride.

I think this was one of my favorite pictures that I took. This would be a great character in a Disney movie, don't you think?

Notice Tiffany's down coat she had with her because she traveled from Boston. The wind wasn't as bad on Thursday and between that and our purchased hat and hooded sweatshirt we were mostly comfortable. In the background you can see the Mt. Everest roller coaster ride that is a recent addition to the Animal Kingdom. It goes backward for a brief moment and I rode it for the first...and last time. Let's just say that my advanced age and wisdom combined to make that decision.

Thursday night Nikki arrived in town and we spent Friday getting acquainted with the Orlando area. Jenn took us to her parents' house where we all got to pick oranges off the tree and make our own juice. We city girls were quite excited!

Saturday the four of us went to the Magic Kingdom for the day to celebrate Tiffany's birthday. This year at Disney you can get in free on your birthday and you get a Happy Birthday button to wear all day.

We had a great time and stayed until the fireworks were over.

Thanks, Jenn and Will, for your gracious hospitality in every way and for sharing your home and time with us. And thanks to Moe for being such a good host dog! We love you all and hope to see you again soon.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Happy Birthday, Tiffany!!

We're leaving soon for the Magic Kingdom to celebrate Tiffany's birthday today. I don't have time right now nor any pictures to properly wish my oldest child and only daughter a very happy birthday, so for now this is all I can do. But once I get home, I will do so.

This year at Disney you get in free for your birthday and they give you a button that says, "Happy Birthday" and a blank space they write your name on. Then every employee that sees you wishes you a happy birthday by name. It will be interesting to see how many wishes she gets today and I'm sure it will make for some fun memories. :-) Actually, just being with these three girls will provide all the memory making that will be needed. We're off to the "happiest place on earth" with a sunny, 70 degree day awaiting us. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday!!

Friday, February 6, 2009

It's Getting Warmer

Greetings from what has always been sunny Florida, just not very warm. Today is supposed to be around 60 degrees, so that is a welcome change. Yesterday, Tiffany and I spent several hours in Animal Kingdom and had a lot of fun. The wind wasn't as strong so we felt a little warmer than on Wednesday. We're about to leave with Jenn (who took the day off) and Nikki (who arrived last night) for a tour around Orlando and just spending time catching up. Since I don't have a lot of time, I'm just going to to refer you to Tiffany's blog site again to see some pictures from yesterday.

Tomorrow is Tiffany's birthday and all of us girls will be going to the Magic Kingdom for the day. It's supposed to be around 70 so there will be something for everyone to enjoy.

For now, I'll say goodbye and hope that you all have a fantastic Friday!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Florida Greetings!

Today has been a day filled with fun, adventure, and cold! Tiffany put up a blog with pictures from our day, so to get the latest update, click here.

We've enjoyed being together and visiting with Jenn & Will and are hoping it warms up quickly. Stay tuned for more updates!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Bloom Again

It's Super Bowl Sunday, it's halftime, and I'm writing a blog entry. Does that tell you how interested I am in this game? I can tell you, however, that the Atlanta Braves Spring Training begins in 13 days...just in case you were wondering.

The weather was really nice today - it was sunny and warm here in GA. (I have to clarify where I am since it seems to change on a regular basis these days). It has been a rather gray winter and my soul has missed the sunshine. I think Kit has felt the same way based on this discovery I made earlier today.

One of her favorite things to do is go outside and be queen of the front porch area and let the sun warm her fur. Here is Her Kittyness in all of her regal splendor from earlier this afternoon.

Even the pansies enjoyed an extra boost of sunlight, although it may take more than that to get them to bloom better. I'm trying to make the front of the house look inviting for potential buyers, but I'm not sure how helpful it has been.

We've had 4 different showings of the house, but no offers made. A couple of those were very interested but had houses to sell. Due to Hamp's company using a relocation firm, we can't take an offer unless the buyer is qualified and ready to buy. So we keep on keeping on and hope that soon the right family will come along and find the house to be exactly what they're looking for.

So back to the gorgeous day today. You've probably noticed that I like to share song lyrics with you or even the song itself if I can find a link to it. (By the way, thanks Tiffany for reminding me how to do that again!). Music really does speak to my spirit faster than just about anything and the signs of life today brought to mind another song. Charlie Hall's recent CD release, "The Bright Sadness" is one of my favorites and the song "Bloom Again" has been such an encouragment to me. Here are the words to the chorus:

"Oh, the leaves are falling, winter is now here. The spring is coming, and you can bloom again. The beauty of, the ash of love, when you emerge, you are more beautiful...bloom again".

With all that has changed in our lives in the last couple of years, it has felt more like Narnia before Aslan came - always winter and never Christmas. But God has slowly been bringing the hint of spring and even though I will be moving 700 miles further north, I'm excited to see where and how He will bring the blooms in my life.

Meanwhile, this week will bring a trip south to Florida, Tiffany's birthday celebration at Disney World, and the laughter of kindred spirit sisters. We just need to pray Tiffany doesn't get snowed in Tuesday as she tries to fly out of Boston!