"I do not claim that I can tell a story as it ought to be told. I only claim to know how a story ought to be told." -Mark Twain


The day I listened to the weatherman!!!!

 Believe me, the irony was not lost on me last week, when the tornado sirens went off in my new little town, that after all that hard work (and I mean HARD work) of moving, it could easily just "POOF" be blown away. You have to know that I am the girl that stood outside during a different tornado warning several years ago, to watch the tornado come in and got struck by lightning. Anyway, I am not a girl that takes tornado warnings very seriously. I grew up in Oklahoma and I know full well the wrath they can dispel on people, but they totally fascinate me. So, last Tuesday when every single time there was a commercial the weatherman would come on (and it was sunny and beautiful outside) to tell us that it was a HIGHLY unusual weather day, I kinda listened. The weatherman said we had not had any days like this for years. He even said if we had an old football helmet or motorcycle helmet laying around, we should keep them close. That caught my attention. I had never heard a weatherman suggest that! Then almost to the minute of when the weatherman suggested the torndadoes would start, they did. The same helmet suggesting weatherman was on the TV full time by then and had another suggestion. He said, "If you are in the line of these massive tornadoes, take cover and pray. If you are not in the line of the tornadoes, please pray for those that are." Hmmm. A weatherman suggesting prayer???? (I began to listen). The sirens went off and I got the leashes for my dog and the crate for my cat. We have only been in this house for a week, so I knew the animals were not familiar enough to run to the basement. (And THANK GOD we do have a great basement.) I had one daughter at home and she was game to continue to sit upstairs with me. By this time we had had several phone calls from relatives "strongly suggesting" we head to the basement. (They know me so well.) Then the weatherman said, "Guthrie (my new little town), the tornado is coming right at you. If you are in Guthrie take cover now, because this tornado is rain-wrapped and you will never see it coming. Well, being that Oklahoma raised girl, I KNOW that rain-wrapped tornadoes are horrible. I listened. I gathered up my pups, my cat and my daughter and we headed to the basement. The animals were all very calm. ....Which surprised me. One day many years ago, I had been out riding my horse on a sunny day and the horse acted horrible all afternoon. He even bucked me off!  That night we had a big tornado. Animals sense things that we often cannot. So when my pups and cat were being good, I thought maybe we were going to be spared. Then the air changed. It is hard to describe unless you have been through a tornado. There was an eerie stillness all around us. Then the basement door looked like it was breathing...with a big inhale and a big exhale. It even knocked over the big huge board I had put in front of the door for protection. Then we lost our power and we were in a very very dark basement. I knew the tornado was close. We were calm. We hugged the pups and waited it out. We kept getting phone calls from people worried about us, but our phones would not stay connected to anyone. But they did know we were fine. When we felt like it was safe, we came out of the basement. The only thing that had happened to our house, was some minor flash-flooding of the sidewalks and part of the basement from the torential rains that wrapped the tornado, and we lost our cute little metal awning that was over our back door. We were beyond lucky. There are no words for how lucky we are. A mere three blocks away, homes were leveled, the power plant was hit, the schools were hit, the animal shelter was hit, and there was loss of life. We were one of many tornadoes that hit our state last Tuesday. The only picture I have included is of a house in our town...or what was a house in our town. I do not want to share a bunch of pictures because you all have seen the ravaged mess the tornadoes leave. I do not want to exploit anyone's tragedy. Our power was off for hours, and we could hear the sirens of rescue crews for hour after hour. We knew it was bad, just by that. Believe me, we have said our prayers of gratitude multiple times each day since the tornado. I hope I have learned to be a little more cautious. I know that the terrific weathermen that day in OKC had to have saved many lives....if people, like me, listened!
One last note about the tornadoes. My sweet daughter Annie works for the American Red Cross and is in charge of sending out volunteers to disasters. She then helps families with any and everything they need to rebuild their lives. The afternoon of the tornado, she text me and said, "Mom. It is coming right for you. Go to the basement." She not only took care of me, but she has taken care of thousands all week. Today is her birthday and she spent it doing what she is wonderful doing.....taking care of the needs of those that have lost so much. I have no doubt when they visit with Annie, they leave feeling a little better. Happy Birthday Annabelle. You make me proud the way you selflessly help so many.
Picture from last year, since we did not get to celebrate yet this year!)
Tomorrow, I'll show you the shades we got put up in the den! Be safe everyone!


Simple Sundays

 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.
 2 Timothy 4:7-8

I am humbled each day at the thought of men and women that are willing to sacrifice everything, so that people they do not even know can enjoy freedoms we take for granted. My prayer of gratitude today is for all my relatives that were willing to make that sacrifice; all the students I have had in school that continue this country's great military tradition; all the friends I have that serve, as well as those perfect strangers I will never know. Your service leaves me speechless...and eternally grateful.  God Bless You and your families  and God Bless the United States of America.


We Are Floored!...........

 We are floored!  Really!  People wrote me asking why I had not been blogging.  People even asked me in person! I didn't even know people paid attention to this little blog.  BUT they did. And they were so kind to ask.
 We are floored! Really.  The last time I blogged about the floors, we had stripped the floors down to their bare naked selves.  It was SO much work. It involved SO many kind of sanders. And sandpaper. And children. And the best hubby ever. But we got it all done. Then hubby began to stain. I did one room, then he took over. Hmmmmmm. (Although one daughter (secretly) told me the room I did was her favorite.) Of course she probably told her dad the same thing!
 It is hard to get a good representation of how absolutely gorgeous the floors are now. ....1. Because the floors are still packed with boxes and things to be unpacked and 2. We have so many big windows and bright sunshine, it is hard to get a great "floor" pic. (Neither 1 or 2 are things to be whiney about by the way....I didn't want you to think I was whiney.  Worn out maybe, but not whiney! We stained the floors MAHOGANY.  It is a very dark color and absolutely what I wanted. Yes, people think I have lost my mind (although others realize that happened a LONG time ago), but I got my way and I got dark wood floors. As soon as someone comes over, Hubby takes claim for how beautiful the floors look, but is quick to say, "Lori wanted them stained this dark!"
Then we put on three layers of polyurethane to keep them looking beautiful. As in glossy polyurethane. And have I mentioned they are beautiful?  Very! Maybe from these pics you can KIND of get a glimpse of how beautiful they look. They are not as dark as the last pic, but not as light as the third pic. Imagine in between.
We are floored! And I love them!
I have linked this with Metamorphosis Monday.


Rockin' the Rose Rock

Well we spent our
first night
at the new house
last night.
We are very tired.
Moving is very hard work.
My front room is a
of boxes and
All of it destined for
other rooms, but
sitting patiently
waiting for my summer
to begin
in one more day.
I will have to rest up for a
day or two
I will get my nose to the
or in this case...
rose stone.
The picture (taken with my phone)
is actually a little
rock medallion doo-dad
on my garage.
Rose rocks
(exactly what they say they are...rocks that look like roses when formed)
are native to
central Oklahoma.
It is also our state rock. (Do you know what yours is??!!)
At my new old house,
we have this quaint
flower basket of
rose rock
above the garage,
and also an original iron fence
with stone columns...that feature
rose rock.
I promise to take a
better pic,
with my real camera.
But for now, I need to rock this last day of school,
so I can begin to
work on the
Rose Rock Place.


Shoe on the other foot.............

 We stained floors
until the
wee hours
of the morning.
My husband did
most of the work.
 My husband never goes barefoot.
And I mean never.
Hardly even sock-footed.
He doesn't wear sandals or any type of
flip flop shoe either.

Me....on the other hand...
it takes an
Act of God
for me to wear shoes.
If I could be
every single minute of every single day
I would LOVE it.
 I will wear
flip flops in
any kind of weather....
since it is the closest thing
to being barefoot...
with (a small amount of) couth.
So well after the midnight hour,
after we had been working on
the floors since 5ish,
my Hubby could not take
one more second
of wearing
only socks on his feet.
He grabbed the closest
"shoes" allowable (to
work on the floors)...
which would be a pair of my Croc thongs.
I sense a new fashion trend
on the horizon!



We have ten days between
getting this house
to when we have to be out of our other house.
In the meantime, we both have full-time jobs,
and have to refinish the floors
of the new (old) house.
So for the past four days
we have been
Heavy duty stripping.
In fact,
we've had the
whole family
You do realize I am
talking about
stripping floors,
We had a three-day weekend
at our school.
Plus my husband and I
took a day off of work.
And we sanded and stripped.
And sanded some more.
And when that wasn't working well enough
we added weight to the sander
and sanded some more.
We used an "edger" sander.
It was the beast.
But it was also stronger
than four horses.
I could not control it.
I left that to my husband and sons.
Did I mention that sanding
involves a LOT of
being on your hands and knees?
And heavy equipment that likes
to pull the body in ways it shouldn't.
Loud noises.
Lots and lots and lots of fine dust.
Lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of time.
Lots of different sanders.
Every size imaginable.
Every grade of grit on the sandpaper.

But it slowly began to come off.
Stripping is not for the impatient....
which is why it is so hard for me!
If the pictures seem random, they are.
We did lots of rooms.
We had lots of tools.
All our children got in on the action,
although I did not get pictures
of everyone.


Ever so slowly
they began to look
so much better.

This was a job for
And a few Swiffers.
My husband wore his Zune
the entire time
and rocked out to classic rock...
As he sang along.
It was entertaining.

 My son was able to bend over like this for hours
and control that beast edger.
Oh to be young and nimble again!

When the four-day stripping extravaganza
was over....
we had this.
The floors look
absolutely beautiful
in their
naked state.
But alas...yes we did,
we gave them a coat...
or two..
Well stay tuned. I'll show you more....
real soon......


Simple Sunday

 "But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith."
                                                 1 Timothy 1:5


The Move..............

Who says table runners don't make great packaging material?
This is what I am busy doing....Plus the fact that I have just over a week of school left.

My idea of packing big stuff....Stack it up!

Not to mention the fact that we are trying to redo
all the wooden floors
in my whole
new old
before we move in.

And we have to be OUT of
this rental by the
of May.

this is the kind of
help I get!

my friends
is a
sneak peek
for you.
Now I've
got to



This picture might not do the cake justice,
but this cake is absolutely delicious!
It is moist. It is different. It is great.
Yes, I have made it a couple of times,
for those in my family that are
It was fine, but I like it
much better
with the coconut.
You be the judge!

Pineapple-Coconut Cake with Warm Coconut Icing
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 cups sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 (20-ounce) can crushed pineapple, undrained
2 cups self-rising flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 325F. Grease and flour a 13x9-inch baking pan.

In a large bowl, combine butter, sugar, and eggs; mixing well. Stir in pineapple, flour, and vanilla. Pour mixture into prepared baking pan.

Bake 40 to 50 minutes. Remove from oven; pour icing over hot cake. Return cake to oven and bake 10 minutes, or until icing is bubbly.

Warm Coconut Icing

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup sugar
1 (5-ounce) can evaporated milk
1 (3.5-ounce) can coconut
1 cup chopped pecans
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium saucepan, combine butter, sugar, and evaporated milk. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; boil 4 minutes, stirring constantly; remove from heat.

Stir in coconut, pecans, and vanilla. Pour over hot cake.


Simple Sundays

"But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint."
                                                          Acts 17:11


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