Monday, September 18, 2017

Bringing Memories to Life

The bench we brought from Mom and Dad's house and had in the backyard sadly didn't make it through the storm. 

So yesterday Parker unearthed a hammock stand that Daryl bought for us a couple of years ago and set it up for me. We put up the hammock that used to hang in my parents' backyard underneath the trees - it's still in great shape after 30 years. Uncle Roger brought it back with him from Venezuela. Love having these wonderful memories brought to life again and having the boys enjoy these links to family. 

Davis and I hanging out relaxing.....

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Making Music

The boys' music teacher has had no power at her house this week, so we moved music lessons to the church for her this week. The boys went in on Friday morning instead of Thursday night. While Parker was taking his piano lesson, this was Wesley practicing his Christmas music with our office manager LuAnn. They did a nice little duet - she sang as he played along! 

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Hurricane Irma

We did a lot of cleaning before the storm hit and took pictures of every room in the house in case we needed to document our stuff later for the insurance company. This is how the boys have spent the entire weekend - insisting on a slumber party in their big brother's room. 

Sunday morning the authorities wanted us to keep people off the road, so Daryl did a Facebook live video from our living room to broadcast out to church folks, reflecting on Psalm 46. 

The power went off here about 9:30pm on Sunday night. And then later the storm shifted. Facebook on our phones was how we were getting updates. Instead of heading for Tampa as we thought earlier in the day, Irma came straight up the spine of Florida and the eye went over us in Lake County. Hands down it was the worst hurricane experience of my 36 years in Florida - the pounding wind and rain was scary, especially when one of our pine trees fell down the side of our master bedroom about 11:30pm. Daryl and I were still awake when the eye went over us and the total quiet - no wind and no rain - after all the noise was too eerie. 

When Monday morning came, we realized that thankfully our storm damage was minimal. Two big sections off the top of one of our pine trees fell. One got caught in our tree line and the other bigger piece only damaged one small section of fence and a tiny section of rain gutter. Lots of limbs and branches down throughout the yard. We spent most of the day cleaning up the front yard. 

We took the dog for a walk later in the day throughout the neighborhood and up to the church. We lost our neighborhood sign - Lantana Estates. Most of the neighbors had the same kind of minimal damage we did. Lots of trees down, but most of them missed people's houses. Thankfully the only damage to the church seems to be a section of fence that fell into our retention pond and some soffit and fascia damage in between our preschool and our Family Life Center. 

With no power in the house, Daryl fired up the propane grill and warmed up soup and toasted bread in our driveway for dinner! 

Tuesday morning dawned and still no power. Estimates from the power company were saying it would be another 5-7 days before we got it back. We did our best to make arrangements for calling off some church activities by cellphone and email and trying to arrange a contingency plan for Sunday worship. We also did some more yard cleanup - one of the church trustees swung by the house with his chainsaw and chopped up our tree mess in the backyard! So thankful for Michael. 

And shortly after that, Granddaddy arrived with a generator and gas all the way from Tampa! It was awesome to power up the refrigerator, a couple of fans and charge up all of our tech.  

Friday, September 8, 2017

Family Birthdays

We spent Labor Day in Tampa at Uncle Kelly and Uncle Nam's house. I love to spend time outside there with the ponds and the trees. So pretty and relaxing. 

It was time to celebrate family birthdays for September - Uncle Kelly, Aunt Barbara and Grandmommy! We had a wonderful time together!

Prepping for Hurricane Irma

This is Davis' idea of prepping for a hurricane. He made himself a nest in the living room with some favorite stuffed animals - and he's near the outlet to recharge his iPad. 

We prepped the rest of the house - inside and out - for the storm and thanks to our wonderful and amazing staff the church is prepped as well. No worship here for Sunday - law enforcement wants everyone off the road by 5pm Saturday night. So now we just sit and wait and watch and pray! 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Our Fur Babies

Bella turned 2 in August. You can find her wherever there are people who will love on her; she's relaxing in the mancave here next to children playing video games. 

Mary turned 17 this year. When the boys are awake, you can generally find her alone in a room by herself. She finds creative places to hide - like the bookshelves. But at night, she's glued to Daryl's side on the couch. 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Birthday Celebrations

Over the weekend we got the chance to attend two different birthday parties for church folks - the first was for 1 year old Asher held at camp and the second was a 90th birthday party for Merle and Jean Rodkey at church (it was also their 69th wedding anniversary!). We love our church family and getting to participate in these special occasions!