People are Worth It

I rolled over this morning and checked the time.

I have a friend who’s gets up every day at 4:30 to go to the gym.


Not so much.

However the coffee will be brewing early today!

Thrifting is my absolute favorite thing to do. Thursday are full of it……well sort of.

Mom, our friend Kenna and I volunteer at a Interfaith Emergency Services Thrift Store every Thursday. You can read about them here:

It’s not glamorous by any stretch of the imagination. It’s hot in that warehouse but as we walk through the store and are welcomed by the many volunteers that keep the store open, it easy to feel the love and the passion that keep the doors open providing services to those in need. And for those of us that are not in need and just like to find treasures? It’s fun! Every single Thursday!

It’s however not about thrifting, it’s about the people. People are worth it.

This morning will also include getting ready for Thursday night book club. Did I need to add another thing to my already full calendar?


However there were books that I wanted to read. There were women that I wanted to see and what better way to get both accomplished? Book club.

I’m a horrible reader. I’m a professional blog reader. I can scroll through Pinterest like it’s my job. But sit quietly and get interested in pages of paper? I’m not great at it.

Around the first of the year, I wanted to read Jen Hatmakers book “Interrupted” and I know me. I’ll start. I’ll get distracted. I’ll never finish. I really wanted to read this book so I invited others to read with me. Book club was started. It’s so much more than books. It’s relationships. It’s learning and hearing other people. It’s caring about their story and the person who is reading the book. Book club has grown. A lot. When I’m excited about something I want others to get excited too so I invited. Others invited. We have finished one book and are halfway into “Girl wash your face” by Rachel Hollis

I was speaking to our youngest book club member last night about the book. So many chapters might not pertain to an 18 year old right now but she said “I’m storing all this up for when I need it.” She’s so smart. I love her

It’s more than the book. It’s about the people and people are worth it.

Another reason I need to rise early is because I need to go to bed early tonight. Nothing like thinking ahead! I need to be on the road in the morning by 4:30am. Seems to be a theme.

My friend is having surgery tomorrow..

She picks me to be with her. She picks me to sit beside her as she talks to the Dr. she picks me to care for her as struggles to get out of bed. She picks me instead of her family who live in the same town.

I’m honored. I’m grateful that I don’t have to have a regular job that won’t allow me to be away from home for a few days. I’m grateful for a family that holds down the fort while I’m away. I’m grateful for FaceTime because I need to see Steve and Jack before bedtime.

If you are the praying kind, maybe remember me in the morning as I drive. Remember my friend at 8:00 as she goes into surgery.

Remember it’s about the people.

People are worth it.

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Before and After Guest Room

Who am I kidding!

It’s Naked Girls Room. Can’t help it.

If you want to read the back story, how it gots its name and some of the details, you can click here:

Naked girls room

The floor

Naked girls room update.

This picture is the “before it gets better” stage. For sure.

Above the kitchen is naked girls room.

The original staircase, immediately off the kitchen.

Drywall installed.

Paint and trim completed.

This little alcove is going to be the home of the new platform bed.

We were gifted funeral home kneeling benches when a local funeral home decided to remodel. I had no idea what I would do with them until the platform bed became a reality.

Who would ever know what their previous life was?

Naked girls room is a loft. Originally it had a door but we decided as a guest space it would be really cute converted to a loft.

The Guest Room has a full bathroom. Our guests stay in style.

The original wall facing the kitchen had a weird little ledge that I desperately wanted to get rid off.


Not possible.

Next best thing? Make it look like it had always been there. Add a full wall shelving unit.

Now I love that weird ledge.

The floor was an eye roller.

Some of my ideas, the family, especially Steve rolls their eyes.

This project was a necessity. There was not a budget for a new floor. Plywood would have to do but ugly plywood is not in my vocabulary.

I had never stenciled anything. But I decided I would try it anyways.

I started here.

and ended here.

This room is more finished than any other room in the entire house. Sometimes I just go up and sit on the bed. This room is peaceful and lovely. Just lovely.



Thanks for joining me on the journey of Before and Afters!


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Before and After Kitchen

We are approaching our second anniversary living at the old house.

I was recently asked to submit pictures of our home to potentially be included in a magazine. That’s not an easy task! I’m not a professional photographer by any stretch of the imagination and we have 4 adults and a baby that live in our part of the house. Lots of stuff and baby paraphernalia had to moved and actually put away. Some days are actually titled “put crap away day.” Anyone know the feeling?

As I started at looking at the pictures I took, I began to reminisce about the last two years. Where we are and my goodness where we have come from.

I thought it being our house-a-versary, and how it would be nice to have a look back.

Stating with the kitchen:

This picture is actually the “before kitchen.” It’s not even the same place as our current kitchen.

Our laundry room is now where their kitchen used to be.

More on that later.

This is where our current kitchen is now. It was their dining room or their laundry folding room is by the looks of it.

There WAS a wall where our current open concept kitchen is now located.

Here shows the wall removed and for those who know of naked girls room, here it is open for all to see.

Most of the ceiling had to be removed, repaired and made beautiful again

Finally, the walls were finished, drywall was hung and finished and cabinets were installed.

Gorgeous original bead board ceilings were finished.

This little hallway that now leads to a built in pantry and a powder room used to lead to 2 bedrooms and a bathroom. Those rooms are now part of the other side of the house, which includes our master closets and our master bathroom.

Floors were sanded back to the original oak and finished in house, not by professionals.

Pantry shelves were installed.

Counter tops were measured and installed

The finished product!!

When in the depths of renovation, all you can do is one day at a time. Two years later and many projects are still needed completion, but WOW it was a wild ride and worth every second.

Our house is more than a house. It’s our safe place and our haven of rest.

It is worth it.

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I Scrolled through Pictures

It’s 1:46AM.

I haven’t had a middle of the nighter in a long time.

What’s the culprit this time?

Definitely caffeine consumption yesterday could have been.

Maybe it was JR a few moments ago trying to get himself out from under the bed. Hardwood floors and an old dog sometimes don’t mix.

Maybe I can’t get my body temp to become normal again. It’s hot ya’ll. It’s been a week of hot, hot and more hot. I’ve worked outside all week and yesterday in the warehouse at Interfaith Thrift Store. I just can’t seem to get cool.

Whatever it is. Here I am. I’ve been tossing and turning for an hour and I’m over it.

Find a book to read?

Read a blog post?

Decide what my next project will be?

Scroll through pictures?

Yeah that one…..

Today is a big day.

The concrete slab is being poured in the pool house.

See the first square?

That’s the toilet room.

See the second square?

That’s the shower area.

Our pool has been sitting for weeks waiting for these two squares to be poured.

It’s a big day!!!

There is a third rectangle next to the shower that will have a dining table. Can you say dinner by the pool?

I wish I had some program that would show what it’s “going to look like.”

I have a picture in my head but that doesn’t count

Here’s the front half of the pool house

A grill area with a bar

And lastly a seating area with chairs and a bed swing

As I look at the picture I even have a hard time seeing it.

But I promise, it’s happening

It’s a big day

Monday, the pavers begin and the pool guy says 2 weeks and we will have a finished pool.

And soon after….. a finished pool house.

It’s been a long summer but it will be worth the wait.

We have been working on getting this bad boy up for sale.

Know anyone looking for a great motor home? Give them my number

Jack has his first taste of dragon fruit.

I thought he looked a little like Keith Ledger as the Joker except way cuter.

Who likes Mama Mia?

Me. Excited about the Sequel. I sent this to my friends and said we should be them for Halloween.

Look what I scored for the pool house. LOVE IT!

It even matches my fabric. It’s the little things.

I realized that I never shared our finished fireplaces. Here’s a sneak peek. I’ll get busy writing a post. It’s worth the wait

Ahhhhh. Random but oh my word.

Now I’m crying AND I can’t sleep.

Is there anything cuter than a baby in a Walmart cart?

Remember these cute little roses I bought? Well there’s a story behind them and I’ll share later.

You can’t see them YET but soon they will be trailing up these fabulous cedar trellis’ that Steve built for me this week.

Here is the goal. Yeah I know, big goals

It’s amazing what you find when you scroll through pictures. Photos used to get taken, developed and stored in an album and now….the get snapped and forgotten about. I’m going to try and better about that.

2:24AM and I’m going to try and sleep now.

It’s a big day.

Sweet dreams

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Staycation Week 1 or is it 2?

Steve took vacation this week .

This week was supposed to be full of sitting by the pool, swimming in the pool and enjoying, well, the pool. Due to weather and contractors, the pool is about 4 weeks behind.

This is the current state of our pool house. Its a work in progress and we are excited for it to be completed. The pool sits, a giant rectangle of concrete. However, water is in the near future.

Since vacation week 1 was already planned to be home, we flipped vacation week #2 to #1 and it became a staycation work week. Steve is the absolute hardest worker and he can get more done in one day than I can do in 5.

One day of fun was definitely in the cards and on Friday, we went fishing. Not just any fishing, but with friend, worship leader extraordinaire and Captain Jason Lowe of J. Lowes Guide Service.

We got up really early for a vacation day to meet Jason in Cedar Key at the boat ramp by 8am.

The weather was absolutely beautiful and I had forgotten how amazing a boat in the ocean feels.

The sights were beautiful

We fished for red fish. Did you know they are known for the spot next to their back fin?

We also fished for trout. I was lucky enough to snag a big flounder.

It was a fantastic day and we had enough clean fish for family dinner!

I headed to Jason’s website for his fish recipe

I knew it was good because he had made it for us to eat before!

It was amazing !!!

Thanks Jason for the best day.

Mostly, thanks for your friendship

If anyone wants a great day on the water, make sure you call our friend Jason at JLowes Guide Service.

You won’t be sorry.

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The Overflowing Mailbox

What happens when you have a lot of people that live in the same house?

Lots of mail.

What happens when Amazon Prime is your best friend?

Lots of packages.

I had purchased the cutest little metal mailbox that had a vintage feel for the front porch.

So cute right?

Well most of the time, the mail was left on one of the chairs because it wouldn’t fit in the mailbox.

My friend Jody was over and visiting the garage. I have friends who visit in the house and friends that visit in the garage. Lovers of the hoard and all of its possibilities.

We are chatting about such possibilities and I mention and point to an old ugly breadbox.

I forgot, of course to take a before picture but it looked very similar to this

An ugly brown box……..He says “how about a mailbox?”


Brilliant!! Why didn’t I think of that???

I paint inside and out black since the porch colors are black and white. Make a trip to HOBLOB and find the perfect size and already white MAIL letters and the cutest crystal knob.

Screw that baby onto the house and now just wait for the mailman to deliver all our glorious mail that will fit into our super size, super cute mailbox.

I will have to wait until Thursday.

Happy Independence Day friends. I am proud to be an America and forever our flag will wave and our dog will hopefully not have a stroke shaking from all the fireworks.

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So many signs and a super gifter

Many signs are currently taking residence in our front yard.

We are all about highlighting people running for county elections .

We are also excited about the contractors sign. Whoop Whoop for contractors.

But the best sign came via the front door last night.

Steve and I were in attic/movie room watching a movie when we heard the dogs frantically barking downstairs. So annoyed, the movie gets put on pause, Steve hauls it down 3 flights of stairs to yell at dogs because Jack has already gone to bed and the last thing on our wish list is to have a baby woken up.

Steve is gone for a while and I wonder…….

What is he getting to eat?

How long does it take him to go to the bathroom?

He’s checking on some score from some game on the television.

He returns.

He says “there were some guys at the door.”

“Who?” I responded.

“It was Matt and some other guys selling signs raising money for a missions trip. He said to tell you he loves you.”

Ah!!!!! Dang it! All those thoughts about what Steve was doing when he was really doing good!

I love you too Matt!!!

The “In God We Trust” sign is definitely my favorite. We do trust Him.

This morning at church we began a new series titled “The Reveal.” Its a study on the end times.

Pastor Mark spoke at one point about those who have gone to heaven ahead of us and that we have privilege as followers of Jesus to know that without a shadow of doubt that our loved ones who professed their faith loud and strong will be waiting for us.

In God We Trust

In God I Trust

Dad went to heaven 6 months ago yesterday.

I know that without a shadow of a doubt.

Zero question that one day we will be together again.

Today, upon returning home from church, there were gift bags on the counter.

It’s not anyone’s birthday.

Mother’s Day and Father’s Day have passed. July 4th gifts. No way.

As I peeked passed the tissue paper, I caught my breath.

Tears people….the size of dinner plates sprung from eyes.

My son Justin had found pictures in his phone and had them printed. For no reason. For no occasion.

Not knowing the date was so special

For love of family.

Dad and Jack.

Jack holding Dad’s finger

Dad and Mom holding Jack

Justin takes the title of best gift giver.

I hate hate hate hate that Jack will not know his Papa. However I will share pictures and stories of how much he loved him and that one day we will all be together again.

Have a blessed week friends.

In God We Trust.

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