Busy Sunday

I need to flesh out/finish my syllabi. I have one in a format I can’t clear up, so I am not sure that will work. I did put it in a different file, but now it’s not in the right order. So I have one, which I decided needed to include a different paper as the first major paper, and one which I have not started on. I could, however, go in and easily adapt one of my old syllabi for that class. I’m going to really play with that class and attempt to have a lot of fun.

I had Dr. Ellen look over my two videos and she had improvements to suggest which would help a lot. They actually aren’t too hard to integrate, but the library is closed and I don’t have Final Cut Pro on my computer.

Going to work on my syllabus now instead of writing more.

6-Word Autobiography

Connections: God’s grace in disparate environments.

An Explanation:

I’ve done a lot of different things in my life and yet they somehow seem to connect back together and be woven into a tapestry that tells a story.

I could tell you about the people in my life who have been beside me for multiple steps of the journey. For example, Dr. Weathers and I went through our master’s program together, along with Dr. Gay Barton, who has a room named for her in the ACU library. Dr. Willerton, this year’s Culp Fellow, wrote my recommendation letters for my PhD program; I also TA’ed for his Major British writers class. I went to Purdue for graduate school and got to know Dr. Williams, the director of composition here. Immediately after graduating from high school, Dr. Ellen Little (ACU’s campus physician) and I went to Mission Seminar together and got to know each other; when she was on furlough, I gave her a tour of Houston; then she offered me a place to stay while I was house hunting here in Abilene. My new faculty mentor, Mrs. Cukrowski, was on my hall in McKenzie when I was an undergraduate. A friend I met when he was leaving for Thailand, in the missionary apprentice program, the same one I went to Switzerland with, is now a professor in the Bible department- Dr. Chris Flanders.

“I know the plans I have made for you, plans to prosper and not to harm you,” God said (Jeremiah 29:11). And in Romans Paul tells us that God determines the places we will live and the times we will live there. Obviously he wanted these people in my life.

Together they show that there are connections, even in very different situations and that we are walking this path together.

An Incomplete Explanation:

This is not all the connections I am seeing. I can see how my time in Switzerland made my time here in Abilene without my husband Ron (since he is in school in Houston) much easier. I can see how my history classes have improved my literature teaching. I know that teaching humanities last year has made my literature classes better. Also, the humanities class was better than it would have been otherwise because I taught “Dinosaurs and Dragons” and “Games and Races Through History” to homeschoolers in middle school.

The first full-time job I ever had teaching was teaching homeschooled students in a one-room schoolhouse. That opened my eyes to the possibilities of homeschooling (and the problems), which God used to bring me to homeschool my own sons. (Eventually. I kicked and screamed first.)

My old mentor was just telling me about a great Biblical texts student he has; the guy is the son of a friend of mine from Austin with whom I went on the the MARK (missionary apprentice) program.

There are connections all over the place for me with this life I am living now. For instance, the associate dean wanted to introduce me to a guy who writes for the newspaper. I looked at, but did not purchase, his house; because of that, I had already met him. (Doug, I loved your house. Ron just thought it was too big for us.) In fact, there are really too many to tell. I’m good with that, I think.

Abilene is the kind of school where, even when you leave, you’re only two degrees of separation from people all over the world.


The tapestry above is from grimalkinshearth.com.

Maybe It Is Me

When I went forward at church to ask for prayers, I asked for strength because I know this is the right decision, but I did not expect the right decision to be so hard. They prayed I would know it was the right decision.

When I said I have “too many, too long, or none” as options for my story topics, they heard that I thought I had no stories and commented on the wealth of stories I had. I know I have a wealth of stories. That was the problem.

Definitely I don’t have the depth of stories like Karen’s or Dora’s, but I do have stories.

We’ll see where this goes.

I love the idea of the furniture as icons one can click on as they go around the room and hear about the family members who are part of that furniture. I even like the idea of setting up the whole room with all the pieces, and the brochure on the table from the college. I like all of that. Very new media.

But that’s not what I am going to do. And the question is what am I going to do. How personal do I want to get? How much do I want to go into?

That I don’t know.

Simple Carbs

I have not been low carbing it the last few days. I will be mostly good but not entirely good and then get frustrated with myself.

However, the pains are pretty minimal, except when I eat carbs right before bed. Apparently a lot of the pains were still nightshades.

Whoo hoo! I’m over nightshades! Yay. That is so good.

But I still need to get back to low carb so I can get this extra weight off. I’m wearing a size 12 shorts and have a size 12 dress. While I know most of the size 12s won’t fit me, that made me feel good.

Have a class tomorrow (to take) that I am not ready for. I still haven’t finished my review. But I was accepted to the big rhetoric conference. I’m pleased about that.

I have this review and then I need to finish the chapter for Routledge by Sept. 15. Then I have another review to do. Then I’ll be through with my scholarship for 2011-12s faculty accomplishments.


I ate popcorn tonight because I was so tired of all the food I’ve been eating, low carb. That was probably not my best choice, although it tasted good.

Then I read a very sad book. I didn’t think it was the sad one, but it was.

And now I’m sitting on the chaise lounge depressed.

I told the owner of a flooring store that we hoped this would be our last house. He laughed and said it wouldn’t be. Said someone knocked on the door of their home, after 17.5 years in it, and offered to buy it. The kids were grown so they sold. Then they fixed up another one and sold it. Then they were living in a house and fixing it up and someone else knocked on the door and asked to buy it. So they’ve lived in five houses in the last ten years or so. He said not to ever plan on it being your last house.

But, regardless of whether or not it is our last house, I want to fix it how I like it while it’s new so that I can enjoy the time in it.

The white paint in the den makes the whole room look a LOT better. It’s quite bright back there now, though some of that is because I took the curtains down. I’m going to have to get tie backs and something to hang them on so that I can keep that brightness when the room darkening curtains get put up in there for the television, probably before the television.

I like the table that I bought, and I bought the smaller of the two we liked, but I still think it is too big. Can’t imagine how big the other would have been. It’s half a foot longer and half a foot wider. I am not sure it really works in the kitchen as an island. I may have to get rid of the folding chairs and the card table (or move them anyway) and put it under the chandelier instead. I’m not sure. There is room, but it seems so big!

I’ll be glad when the den and the kitchen wall are finished so I can put everything back. I don’t like having the house messy. I know I’m not the world’s greatest house cleaner, but clutter bothers me.

The pantry is supposed to be done by Wednesday. We’ll see if it really is. They were not too thrilled that I wouldn’t let them bring it out unfinished, but I’ve waited over three weeks since it should have been done. They can wait two days. They told me it would be done by the 1st of August, but they hadn’t even started on it. I gave them 50% of the money for the cabinet about two months ago. They didn’t even start on it until I called on the 5th. I will not be recommending them to anyone.

R is not too thrilled about moving here. But we both agreed we were coming, so I’m going to get over feeling guilty. It’s where we decided to come. It’s not my fault he’s found other things he’d rather do. I asked him, before I committed to this, if he wanted to stay in Houston. But he said we were going.

Of course, that’s easier to say when you don’t have to do anything about it. I packed us up. I got everything here moved. He’s been very stressed about the work on the house there, but the move and this house has been a lot more difficult. Oh well. I guess that’s both of us thinking we have the bigger job again.

I haven’t been walking enough. I take the dog out in the morning, but only for about half an hour. That’s all I can manage without food and I have to wait to eat because of my medicine. I’m thinking about going out tonight, but it’s late and it is dark. Yes, I go out in the dark in the morning, but there are lots of people driving by going to work. This late at night the street is pretty quiet actually.

I got the office closer to done, though it’s still not there. I filled up the two filing cabinets I have and still have two or three boxes of filing to unpack. Hopefully I can figure out what to do with those things.

I was going to fix the desk up, but it is filthy and desperately needs cleaning. I thought I would bring the dust buster, but that is in Houston still. So I guess I’ll bring a roll of paper towels and some cleaning supplies and just clean up all the crap by hand.

I’ve been looking for rugs for the house and the office. I found two I really like, but I’m not sure they would be great for the house. This is my favorite.

I thought about framing R’s pictures in the tube for the house, even though I had intended them for my office. But we need some bright art for the den and I thought that might be a good choice. However, I also want him to know that I am proud of his work, so I think I will hang it at the office. I think I’ll put the other Tarkay in the den. There’s no orange in it though and I really want some orange in that room.

I miss my little orange painting from Austin that was stolen by someone after Hurricane Ike at the college. I’m guessing it was someone cleaning the offices who took it, but I wish I had it still.

I’ve also looked for bedding. I don’t really like the red or the black we have, both from Steph. But they are here and paid for, so I put the black on. (The red is actually at the studio.) I’m starting to think about matching the bedspread in there with curtains and pictures and I don’t want to do that as I don’t really like the bedspread.

I’m hanging the Benfields R bought me on the kitchen wall. The Trebys are in the guest suite (guest room and my study). The Tarkay is in the living room. It actually matches the gold wall, strange as it is to admit that.

We are looking for flooring, preferably wood. R has found a guy he likes to do the wood in Houston, but I don’t really want him to come here and do the wood. I’d rather hire someone here. The prices range from about $7/sq ft to $25/sq ft. The guy in Houston is about $11.50. But I think we could get a nice floor for $8/sq ft. However, the nicest floors would require us to hope that the installers recommended were good. I have not had a lot of luck in the folks who have been recommended so far.

I’m really sorry we didn’t go with the $3400 pantry, which would have finished out the cabinets in the kitchen and underneath the desk area. Even though we are getting a pantry, those other areas are still in need of fixing. I really don’t want to call the guy back and ask how much he would charge to do that half of the stuff when we went with someone else for the pantry. But I might do it anyway.

The house is so messy, but there’s not really any point in cleaning it until all the painting is done and then I can clean everything at once, rather than having to do it twice.

Even though the kitchen wall had Kilz and a coat of paint, it needed a second coat. I put a second coat on the bigger half and painted the baseboards, but I didn’t do the smaller half because I didn’t have anything to cover the floor.

I know Brian didn’t think I wanted him to do the window casings in the den, but I painted them when he left, so they will get done. I liked them, but not enough to have them stand out like that. I think having all that wood painted white makes the room look better. (Yes, I painted wood. Let’s all faint.)

I’m lonely here. I didn’t expect to be since I know so many people, but really I’m missing R, and M. E is a joy to have here, even though he stays in my study playing his games most of the time. He did come out multiple times and help me put the table and chairs together. He also helped me carry in the table and put it up once I got it together.

The dog goes in her crate on her own, now that she has a nice comfy pillow in there. I need to put a pillow case on it so I can wash it easily. I’m fairly sure I have very soft ones that she will enjoy.

I’m wearing my mother’s wedding ring and I probably should stop that, but I don’t want to put it up. How weird is that? Probably very. It’s especially bad because the ring doesn’t belong to me but to M. If I lose it I will feel bad. If it is stolen, though, that will not be my fault, so I won’t feel as guilty. So I should definitely put it up.

Since I had popcorn, about two hours ago, I don’t want to go to bed. I want to get all the starch through my system so that I will sleep well.

Yesterday I went to bed at five pm and stayed in bed (except for maybe an hour) until 6 am this morning when the dog woke me up. I guess I was very tired.

I found a bedspread I liked, but it is a little Asian. I don’t have anything else that is so I am not too sure about that. I think it is pretty though.

The other rug I like has a lot of olive in it, which is not a color I really like, but it has both my blues and a red in it. That seems like it would be a good match for our stuff.

I’m still trying to figure out what to put on the new island table. I’m thinking a blue vase and red and orange flowers. But I haven’t found anywhere around here with cheap flowers yet. HEBs are very expensive and not particularly pretty or long lasting. Gonna have to keep looking I guess.

I could go to Walmart and buy the black out curtains, but I guess I keep hoping I’ll find beautiful blackout curtains in orange. I did find some, by the way. On overstock.com. Which is where I found the rugs. But not the bedspread set.

Okay. I’m not depressed anymore. Think I’ll go surf the net.


Today started out very well. I was up early and laid down on the chaise lounge with the dog. I took the dog for a walk. We picked up some trash from our back yard and walked about eight blocks. I went to work for new faculty orientation.

The folks were very nice. I got compliments on my shoes and purse. (Beijo pink and black purse. Jessica Simpson turquoise shoes.)

Grace was there and we made plans to eat lunch at my house, but she finished before I did and she forgot. So I made eggs and ate with the dog. The dog was happy.

I also called the wood floor place. The cost was a LOT higher than I was expecting.

Also they said we have tile that might have asbestos in it. I’m thinking we should just take it up. But then we would also need to clean up the house. Or I can do it myself and find out whether Michael was right about carcinogens. If I do it myself, it will be in the duct work and everything so I am not the only one who will have long-term exposure. I guess that means we should test it and have it professionally removed if that is the deal. Asbestos removal costs between 2 and 4K for a 2000 sq ft house, according to the internet.

The agent wanting to sell our house in Houston wants a year-long contract. I’m not happy with that. It’s just too long. I wrote and asked for a six-month listing contract, with the option to cancel at 90 days if we were not happy. We will see what she says– and if Ron gave her my cell phone number.

I need to buy the paint for Brian and get a mask and eye protection and try to clean out the chimney flue so the damper will close. Hmm. Guess I could change my close and see if I can do that without getting my head under there.

Worn Out

I guess I am still stressed because it takes a lot of emotional/mental energy for me to get things done. I’m also in massive procrastination stage, so that doesn’t help get things done.

I have been in town for nine days. My house is unpacked entirely, put together, and fleshed out (though not all the paintings are up since I am having the wall painted). My office is also set up, with my art work and my books on the shelves, though my files are still in boxes on the floor. I need to file those.

So, yes, I’ve gotten a lot done. I did the house the first week, though. It’s been done for a few days. Okay, I did just finish my jewelry. Yesterday I did the rest of the books in the office, once the shelves stopped coming down, and organized all my jewelry into trays. Plus I took the dog for a walk and I walked two miles. And I went grocery shopping.

Okay, that’s not too bad, actually. Maybe I have too high standards for myself.

What about today?
Today I took the dog for a walk (half an hour). I put the jewelry in the armoire (rather than in the trays on the bed). I cooked breakfast for myself. I got dressed for and went to the zoo with Deb and the grandgirls. We stayed there an hour and a half. Then we came back to my house for an hour and a half. The girls played with the dragons, rode the horse, played dress up, and wore the animal faces. We also ate lunch which I made. Then they went home. Now I am waiting for the weatherizing people.

Maybe I think I’m pooped out because I am not already done reviewing the book I wanted to have done by this weekend. Well, that and I am actually physically tired (not totally zapped but sluggish) from having been at the zoo. Wow, Deb has a lot of energy!

Okay, I guess after three hours with babies and half of that in 100 degree heat, I should be a little tired!

Things I Noticed About New Town

1. People sit on the sidewalk or on the humps in the parking lots. I saw three people doing this on Sunday. I thought it was odd.

2. The cheapest gas in town is at the grocery stores, not Sam’s.

3. There are three different chains for groceries and I’ve only tried one.

4. Even though the economy here seems good, businesses listed on the city website have gone defunct.

5. There are many empty buildings for sale.

6. We have an odd kind of grass which apparently comes back on its own every year. That’s good.

7. My neighbors have a lot of trash and don’t know how to close the trash can that we share.

8. My air conditioning bill, while high ($184), was about half what we would pay in the old house. I hope that house sells in God’s perfect timing, even if I don’t know what that is and hope it is soon.

More Hidden Nightshades

or Don’t Be a Dummy, Read the Labels!

Hot dogs all have paprika in them. Hot dogs are now off my list.

All shredded cheese have potato starch in them. Shredded cheese will now be home made.

Most dressings that I was looking at, Raspberry vinaigrettes, have paprika or “spices” in them. So I should probably call Jason’s Deli and find out if their Raspberry Vinaigrette has nightshades. I love theirs. Okay. I just sent them an email asking about their dressing and the chicken noodle soup. (I have found some with modified food starch, but the type is not labeled and some with “spices.”)

I sent an email to the supper club saying that I have food allergies to peppers, tomatoes, and potatoes, but that I can make sure and always bring something that I can eat. We’re having fajitas and queso. Guess I could bring some refried beans and my own shredded cheese. What a pain in the behind. I said I would be fine, but it actually hurt my feelings. Silly. I’ll get over it. At least those nightshades won’t be hidden.

Update: The raspberry vinaigrette is nightshade-free, but the chicken noodle soup is full of potatoes.

Feeling Bad: Simple Carbs

I have been feeling better for the last few days. Then I had company last night and was slow getting things ready. So we ended up having chips and lemonade with grapes. I ate 6 Doritos and had, at most, a cup of lemonade. (I mostly drank water and Crystal Lite.) I also ate 8 grapes. I went to bed early, exhausted, and hurting. I got up late (for me) stiff and sore. It hurt to get dressed.

It was back down to minor twinges by 1 pm, but oh my that was not fun. When I think of how well I have been feeling it is down right horrible.

I think that I have discovered most of the hidden nightshades I had been missing. I am obviously going to have to be more careful of my label reading. Need to purchase a magnifying glass.

But basically, I sleep better and without pain when I don’t eat simple carbs.

So, low carb, no nightshades. That’s not terrible, despite what earlier iterations of myself might have thought. Health and pain-free living is far more exciting.

What I Did This Summer

List of what I did this summer:

Attended the medieval conference in Kalamazoo where I gave a paper on Beowulf in the 21st Century to a packed room.

Presented in Houston at the Johnnie Harris Writers’ Conference on Who Is a Hero and How Do We Know? Using Joseph Campbell’s Monomyth to Examine (and Create) Heroes. I looked at Beowulf and The Aeneid in light of Campbell’s monomyth presentation in The Hero With a Thousand Faces. I received a lot of positive feedback from the community on the presentation.

Wrote a chapter on Beowulf and The Aeneid for The Hero’s Quest from EBSCO. My section is “Epic Quest II.”

Wrote a review of Bruce Thomas Boehrer’s Animal Characters: Nonhuman Beings in Early Modern Literature for The Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts.

Participated in a Christian retreat in the hill country, Ancient Wells I. This was four days of worship, quiet time, play time, and teaching. It was a rich blessing and I am delighted I was one of the 40 people invited to attend. My son also attended.

Took part in a Project Appleseed weekend, where I learned to shoot my rifle better and discovered that even though I was a history major as an undergraduate, there was a lot about the Revolutionary War that I did not know.

Purged and decluttered a house of 3200 square feet for a move into a 2200 square foot house. Gave away 29 boxes of books to the local library for their book sales and took eight car loads of household goods to the thrift store that supports the local abused women’s shelter. Also gave the church twelve pieces of furniture for their annual garage sale.

Packed half (or more) of the items left and moved them in three shifts (so far!). Since R is staying in Houston for ten months to complete his paramedic school, I had to determine what he needed and what I would need and try to separate stuff out equitably. That was a challenge. I did get most of the books!

Unpacked at the new housed. We have an amazing kitchen. It’s what sold the house. Set up a guest bedroom so friends can come visit. (We’ve already had a few say they will be here various times throughout the fall semester.)

Got the old house repainted and recarpeted for sale. Getting the house painted and seeing to other items that need work.

Soon I’ll be unloading the last ten boxes for my office and getting my office into shape.

Aside from that, I’ve visited with lots of friends, taken my dad out to lunch twice a week while I was still in Houston, gone to antique shops and garage sales, and read some books for fun.

Tonight in New Town

It is 7:05 and 105 degrees outside. There is a breeze, but it is about eight feet off the ground. The trees are moving, but not much else.

I was going to go to the mall, but I don’t really want to leave the dog out in 105 heat when I don’t have to. I had hoped it would have cooled off, but nope.

I thought I finished the game/toy closet. I threw out two broken things that ended up with us. Nothing else so far has been discarded. But I just realized that the two dress-up jewelry cases have not been cleaned up or purged. I have put some of the jewelry out for J and her girls, C and J. I’ll go do that after a while.

I realized our front closet, while not as big as our old Harry Potter closet, still has lots of space in it. That is good. I was able to take some stuff out of one of the closets in R’s office and put it in the front closet. There should be more room once the cedar chest gets to the new house, since that is where all the blankets that are crowding the closet came from.

When I get a scanner (or learn to use and do use the school’s scanner) I am scanning all our family photos and, once they are backed up in several places, getting rid of most of them. (Not all, but most.) Some I will send to my cousins, who may not have any of these or certainly not many. I will also be putting a book of our parents together, which I will copy and send them. I hope that it will be a blessing to them.

R was on a school thing and we didn’t get to have the discussion we were hoping for. We still might. I’d like to do it before M gets home. We’ll see. I’m not prepared for it but it could be fun anyway.

Overall it’s been a very good day.

I’ve been trying to drive to work and from work by a different route each time and so far I have been able to do that. I expect it will get a little tougher as time goes on, but, it is teaching me where stuff is.

I followed the phone’s instructions to get to Sam’s and really went around town instead of through it. I am sure it saved time, though.

I learned one street, that both colleges are on, goes all the way through from the top loop to the bottom loop. I will have to drive it all the way down one of these days.

There is a new furniture store in town, but it’s either a franchise or a knock off of the one where we got our table. I really don’t want to buy any more stuff I’m going to feel like a fool for having purchased. I’ve been watching craigslist, but haven’t seen a hideabed. There was a day bed/trundle, $300, but we need it more in Old City than in New Town (although I do need something to sit on in my office). Since that is true, I am not sure I should purchase it. R may find something in Old City on craigslist that is perfect, when he has a bit more time. (If that ever happens.)

I was supposed to start reading a new book for a review, hoping to get it finished before I officially end at my Old College, but I haven’t started it. I can work on that tomorrow.

Non-house moving thoughts

The dog followed me around until today. Every time I left the room she would come with me. Today, she was more satisfied to be by herself. That’s good. It was sweet, but a little painful, especially as she has decided that in the new house she should be allowed to sleep on the bed. (Nope.) There isn’t a couch anywhere except the den, though, so she only has one room to comfortably lay down.

Having the dog with me is a help. While she’s fussy occasionally and I have to feed her (and the whole fence thing with her climbing out is not totally resolved), I am very glad that she is with me. She gives me someone to talk to, someone to have to schedule around (so I don’t end up sleeping all day), and when I woke up in the middle of the night, I just went back to sleep since she wasn’t barking.

Today I am a little lonesome. Apparently 40 minutes a day with other people is less than my optimal. (I think I was lonesome yesterday too. But I went to work and that helped some.)

I started a low carb diet on Monday.

I started the fibro stuff last night. 9 pm and 9 am, 300 mg. I have no idea if I actually have fibromyalgia, but it seems possible/probable/likely to me. So I am doing the regimen. Put all the sal-stuff in a bag under the cabinet. Got new make-up, soap, deodorant, and shampoo. Wore gloves today to cut up my veggies (though they said that was not necessary) and to cut the flowers for my vase (which they said was necessary).

Sometime in the next week or month I should know if I have fibromyalgia. It would be great if I didn’t. It would also be great if the reason I was still having pains was because of the nightshades I was inadvertently (or unknowingly) consuming.

Nightshades I was eating when I thought I was avoiding them all
Turns out light Hellman’s has potato starch in it. (Didn’t know that.)
Turns out the cocoa almonds also have potato starch in them.
Paprika IS a nightshade, so mustard is out. (Though R did find some mustard without it. I haven’t tried it yet.)
There are significant rumors (though no proof) that Diet Dr. Pepper is also nightshade laden. If that is true, it will be obvious to anyone who knows me that I didn’t go off nightshades, but simply began avoiding most of them more often.

So… a lot of food I have been eating over the last year has still had nightshades in it. While my symptoms have gotten better, they did not disappear. That might be the reason why.

It also might mean that I don’t have fibromyalgia.

How will I know? Well, if, within the next month, my symptoms only get better (since I am very carefully reading labels and avoiding anything that says even “food starch”), then I don’t have fibromyalgia. However, if no matter how careful I am being, I get a lot worse and then better, I do have fibromyalgia.

You might say that this is a lot of expense and trouble to go through just to see if I have fibromyalgia. Maybe. But I don’t want to go to the doctor and have it diagnosed (too $$$ for insurance purposes) and I don’t want to keep getting worse if I have it. So I’m doing the “superhard” regimen, which is restrictive and you do have to be very careful, but I’m not seeing superhard yet. Of course, this is coming after having given up nightshades. The fibromyalgia people haven’t asked me to give up any foods. Perhaps that is the difference.

They do suggest for hypoglycemics, which I think I am, that we go on a low carb diet. Well, presto chango I was already going to do that. So it is done. I’m not going on the restrictive diet, not yet, because I think I will lose weight with the other one too.

I’ve also discovered that I don’t like Diet A&W (which has no caffeine and therefore is acceptable). The aftertaste is nasty and stays in my mouth for hours. Gonna have to get some diet Sprite or something.

I don’t know if it is related to the carb cravings or the hypoglycemia or what, but the last couple of months I have eaten four or five meals a day because I get hungry every three to four hours. That’s meant I probably haven’t been losing weight.

However, now, eating way less carbs and way more protein, I should be getting better physically and perhaps I will even drop some weight.

Right now that’s not the biggest priority, although it would be a great blessing.

But I’m not calorie counting, so I doubt that I’ll lose weight.

I don’t have a measuring tape (despite the fact that we own three) so I can’t take my measurements. Well, maybe I’ll go out again and get a measuring tape.

Purchasing and Give Away
I went to Sam’s and didn’t remember why I went. I got some food and some pillows, which I need to take back as they are too green or not blue enough. However, I went to find a good trashcan. I am going to take the pillows back (perhaps tomorrow morning early?), but I don’t know if I really want to buy a trashcan right now. The last one I bought didn’t work out… So…

I think I might give the trashcan away. Maybe someone can get it to work for them. (It is too skinny. While stuff goes in fine, when you try to pull the bag back out, it rips.)

The other night I decided I should not give Grama W’s lemonade set she gave me away. It’s the only thing I have from her, besides her paintings. We have Grampa W’s book and a clock that doesn’t work (but should). If I am going to keep to that, then I need to dig it out of the give away box.

Speaking of give away, I’ve also put several pieces of jewelry in a give away pile. My question on that is, should I try to take it to a pawn shop and see if there is any gold or silver? Which pawn shop should I take it to? How does one do that?

Where do I take the non-pawned/pawnable stuff? I don’t know. But I have four boxes of stuff right now. I also have five books to give away. (Of course, I got an entire box from Vickie’s books, but that doesn’t count, does it? They didn’t come home with me. They are going to my office.)

Bible Reading
I have been reading four chapters a day fairly consistently since the week before the retreat (July 14). I think I have missed three days, though I “made up” two of them.

I learned that not reading the Bible for quite a while lets you see things you have missed out of familiarity before. I saw the gospels in a whole new light, the first time through.

However, I had started the second time through and realized I was already forgetting where I saw what, so I stopped with Matthew (which I did finish a second time) and moved on to Acts. I’ve seen stuff there I didn’t remember also. It’s been quite invigorating, though I don’t want to spend a year and a half not reading the Bible except in church to get that “new” feeling again.

The reading has been interesting, though, rather than a chore. Thank you, God, for that.

We need rain. We are in a big-time drought.

Even Old City is in a drought, which is hard to believe, as much rain as it normally gets. But it has gotten less than a third.

Unfinished business
I don’t have my study done.
The games closet isn’t done (though it is close enough it probably will be by tonight).
My office at work isn’t done.
That’s it.

That’s not bad for only officially moving in on Saturday. (Four days ago.)

I should have fogged the house when I left the first time, though. New Town has just as many bugs as Old City, though no mutant flying roaches (Palmetto Bugs). Just itsy bitsy spiders who are very industrious. I guess they keep the ants away, but they also make webs everywhere.

Need to eat
My stomach is trying to crawl up my esophagus, so I am going to go feed it in the hopes that it will settle down.

House Things

Saturday college roommate L and I drove two vehicles and the dog from Old City to New Town. While the trip is usually about 6.5-7 hours, it took us 10. We took the long way (freeway most of it) and stopped a lot with the dog and for bathroom breaks.

When we arrived, we unloaded both vehicles swiftly.

The dog climbed the fence to get out of the yard within twenty minutes of being put in the yard. She did, however, make a beeline through the open door into the house, which was good.

We opened one of the Benfields to see what the problem was. The tape hadn’t stuck. So I needed to buy tape. I don’t know what we did that evening, besides eat pizza and went to bed. Perhaps that is all we did.

The next morning we tried to go to a local joint, but it wasn’t open (Sunday perhaps?). We ended up going to the IHop.

Monday the a/c was off at work so I didn’t go in. I did walk 2 miles with M around campus. That was actually quite nice, though 7 seemed late to be starting.

Monday evening MD came over and we unpacked my study. First, though, I did clean the bookshelf. All the books that are going in there are up (I think) and I have eight additional boxes (so far) to go to the office. I didn’t get far enough along to ask for help moving the chaise lounge in there and I guess that’s good because now I want to put it in the living room so there will be comfortable seating somewhere cool.

I went to the grocery store and bought some food. I also bought tape for the Benfield.

Tuesday, yesterday, I took the dog for a walk because MD doesn’t want to walk 5x a week yet. I need to though, so Serenity and I did. Took us about 40 minutes.

Also Youngest Son called and said his tuition discount was not on and could I fix that? So I went to campus, checked in with the admin, got the paperwork for the tuition discount, filled it out, took it to HR, went to Student Financials with it, and was done. They said it would be fixed “right away.” I have no idea how long that will be. I expect that it will be done by Friday, though, for sure.

While I was on campus, I also applied for, paid for, and received my parking permit. It moves from car to car, which is good, since right now I don’t even have my car.

I hung the Tarkay yesterday. I centered it on the wall from the closet door to the hall, but the lights were apparently not centered that way. Depending on where you are sitting, the art lights may not appear to be in the middle of the picture, because they aren’t.

I fixed the problematic Benfield yesterday.

Last night, I crashed M + BobD’s dinner–yum! Homemade chicken and dumplings. Then we all went to work. M went to her office and BobD went to mine to paint. The sherbert/ice green/blue looks cooling, which right now is great. The deep gold/yellow was not my style at all. Thank God for BobD and his painting ability!

I hung a Treby today. It is perfectly centered in the guest room and at the correct height as well.

I also opened all the painting boxes and decided to give two that I brought with me away.

Then I went to work on the game closet in the den. It’s hot out there (especially with the fan off because it turns on the outside lights too) and I took a break.

The plumber was supposed to be here this morning, but he forgot to put it in his calendar. I found out because I called immediately. After waiting most of the day for a call, I decided to just put the plumber off. Turns out the hot water is on the opposite side in the guest bath (right instead of left), so it does work. The toilet runs sometimes, but not all the time. And I made the drain less stopped up once, perhaps I can repeat the experience and totally clear it out.

The cabinet makers took my money three weeks ago and didn’t start the cabinet until yesterday when I called them about it. It will be ready sometime next week.

I called the flooring people to get the living room measured for engineered wood. That is supposed to happen on Monday, but they wait until Monday to tell you when. I was going to say I am supposed to walk with MD, but she’s going to Michigan to see her mother (ouch Alzheimer’s). I still want to walk, though. I suppose I could take the dog out in our neighborhood, but I don’t know how far two miles is around here.

The painter guy is coming the 13th. I said I would be out of town both the 13th and 14th, but turns out Elder Son is done with school the 13th, so we’ll be home that evening. Unless, for some reason, we decide to head to Old City and see the sibling and spouse. Probably not though. We all hope painter guy in New Town is better than painter guy in Old City.

I sat down to write so I would remember what this experience was like, but I didn’t really do that in this post. I did, however, say what I have gotten done. That helps.

Reading the Bible

While I do not recommend to anyone a multi-year hiatus from reading the Bible for yourself, I will say that the lack of familiarity when I came back to it has been eye-opening. Many things I remember and knew already and yet other things I see as if I had never seen them before.

I notice, in reading four chapters at a time and each day, that some things repeat (in the 4 chapters or within a book or within the two books) and others I see and say, “Wow. I didn’t know that.”

While it is not that important, I did not know that Barnabas (son of encouragement) was a Levite from Cyprus named Joseph. But according to Acts 4:36, that is exactly who he was.