Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A Day in the Life

I wake up with Rob, according to when he has to be at work. Make coffee. Possibly fix Rob's lunch. And see him off.

The rest of my day, I may work on marketing for Yoga For Vets (an awesome non-profit I'm involved in!). I may go in to the Abilene Arts Council to volunteer my marketing services for their upcoming Gator 911 project (gonna be on CMT in the spring!).

Tuesdays and Thursdays I walk (on nice days) the three blocks through my lovely neighborhood to a yoga class at McMurry University. I walk the dog. I plan the meals. I go grocery shopping. I balance the family budget.

I research upcoming projects: how to make a container garden, decorating ideas for a guest room, where to get farm-fresh produce in Abilene, how to clean a vinyl shower curtain in the washing machine, how to teach a yoga class.

I read my pre-reading for yoga teacher training and the fourth Twilight book. I study the Bible. I crochet. I clean. I prep dinner. I welcome Rob home.

Inevitably, there is not enough time to complete all I want to each day! How is that possible? I have way too much fun doing what I do!

I'll leave you with some pics of our house (all decorated now!)

The blue bookcase my dad and I made; lots of mementos from travels, the beach, family; the flamingo that whimsically reminds me of Florida; the hat rack I made; the loveseat from a garage sale ten years ago... I love decorating with memories.

This shutter, Rob and I picked up at an antique store in New Hampshire just after buying my car (which is fixed, by the way! ...and just as delightful to drive as ever!). I use the shutter for a menu board, listing the meals we'll be having soon. This week is: Ashley's stuffed peppers and spinach salad, pizza eggrolls (if I can find egg roll wrappers - sheesh!), creamy dijon pork and steamed broccoli, and beef stroganoff with homemade bread.

With wood floors and wood cabinets, our wood table was just, well, a lot of wood (so to speak). I knew I needed to cover it and rather than invest in an expensive table runner or table cloth (you know I only like the expensive ones!) I draped layers of fabric from Ghana! Love it!

And this is a carrot cake I baked. Just because.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Some Past Pics

I realized that I hadn't written about that lovely gap between the moving chaos and today. Here's some treasures from that time.

Above is Rob and I on Spouse Taxi Day at Tyndall in Florida (no, my spouse is not allowed to taxi me... unless he is an instructor)

The beach one last time

Buford teaching me egress procedure in case I need to eject from the F-15

Me in the backseat, feeling the need... the need for speed...

Photo shoot of the 95th Wives - isn't that awesome!?!

Cooking the Thanksgiving turkey at the Mayes Place - is the bird too big?

Photo shoot at the Moore Place - this is just the best photo ever - it captures everyone so well!

Reading, Writing, and ... Gardening

I don't read much. Not to say I don't like to read, quite the opposite. But, it's a treat, very much like a nice restaurant - I would rather save up to do it right than eat out little meals here and there. And thus, I prefer to "save up" until I have at least a half a day so I can settle in... a comfy chair, a light blanket, a mug of hot coffee or tea, good lighting, and at least one uninterrupted hour... only then is when I prefer to read. It may sound picky, but I simply love devoting myself to a book!

Lately, I've been reading the Twilight series. I actually saved them until I had a perfect day to read. It was delightful! Soon, I shall take on the third book of the series (downloaded on the kindle!), along with my present reading for my yoga teacher training, and a book about gardening.

I do love being a housewife! In addition to volunteering at the Abilene Cultural Affairs and subbing for yoga classes, I'm planning my future container garden. I'm feeling quite a bit lost about the whole thing as I've had very little experience successfully growing anything in my life, much less food! But, as I've kept a number of house plants alive (some almost three years!) and thoroughly enjoyed my jaunt with front yard flowers - pansies, snapdragons, etc. - over the past two years, I feel ready to embrace the challenge. The lack I feel is for the experience that makes great gardeners. I remember when Rob saw me "watering" my first pansies and asked me what I was doing. It turns out that lightly spraying is not sufficient and one needs to soak. Who knew? Not me.

Thus, I feel a little intimidated when gardening books say things like "these love acidic soil" or "water only when needed" - Oh. Kay. How do I know when my soil is acidic? How do I make it more acidic if it's not? When does a plant really need water? I've figured out the first one, although I don't know what peat looks like (peat makes it more acidic) but how "dry" does the soil need to be before it "needs" water? These are things gardeners just know from observation and experience.

Well, my I didn't learn what I know about military life from a book, so experience, here I come!! ...Hopefully I won't kill too many plants learning said experience.

So, this is what I want to grow so you can get excited with me (I KNOW! I can hardly wait!)

"Garden Candy" Cherry Tomatoes
"Super Bush" Tomatoes (supposed to be great in containers)
"Baby Belle" Peppers (container happy)
"Jewel Tone" Peppers
Basil, Cilantro, Mint
maybe some Yukon Gold Potatoes (don't know how they'll grow, just like them a lot)

Now, the fruit I am really excited about, but I know it's the most difficult to grow:
Blueberries - I can't live without them after my experience in Florida! I will find a way to grow them!
Strawberries maybe
Fig trees I read grow well in containers... and YUM!
I'd like to try cherries
And a lemon tree would round it out nicely

Now, I want to grow them all in pots, so they're portable and I can take my hard labor with me to South Dakota and other places. Also, I can make the soil what I want in a container. I've picked out the sunniest places in the yard. Anything else? I'd love advice!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Broken Ear Drums of Glory

Just another brief update. We wanted you to know that we've settled on a new church. We toyed with the option of going to a different church every Sunday until we left town. However, since it would take about three years to do that because Abilene has more churches per person than any other town in the nation we decided to choose sooner. We will be attending Beltway Park Baptist. The church has a very good pastor, solid doctrine, my good friend KC Johnson, and small groups in our demographic. Now there is a little something that sets this baptist church apart from others: their take on worship music is that it can change our mental capacity for praise. There is the 14-piece band flanked on the left by the back-up singer who doesn't really sing, and on the right by the lead guitar player with his spiked hair reined in by the sweet Rambo-style bandanna. About 50% of the time the group keeps it pretty mellow but watch out when the chorus creeps up. There is nothing in this world like the power chords of righteousness to get Baptists to raise their hands, fall on their knees and crack open their own chests so they can personally shove more Jesus into their heart. Actually that last part isn't true it is just a metaphor. Considering the vast number of Church of Christ locations in the town (they don't use musical instruments in church) it is like they are a magnet for anyone who can play something. It is a nice shift from our traditional "large choir" set-up in Florida.

Settling In

So even though we officially moved to Abilene around Thanksgiving, between all the holidays and traveling, I feel like we've only actually lived here a couple weeks. By the time we came back from Christmas break, I was so anxious to put the Christmas decor away and actually start decorating, I was going crazy! Now, you'll be glad to know I'm much more sane and staring contentedly at my own very favorite paintings and pictures on the walls. Le sigh. Inside-house pictures coming soon.

I have already found plenty of ways to use my time (you know that's a difficult task! syke.) I've started volunteering at the Abilene Cultural Affairs Council. Great timing - Rob and I were in the Abilene Visitor's Center picking up a city map and some brochures on attractions and the like when the head of the Arts Council walked up to me and introduced herself. She said I looked "artsy" and wondered if I would be interested in getting involved in the arts... Hmmm, "perhaps" was my answer. When she found out I had a masters in marketing, I don't think she would have taken no for an answer.

It's been really fun so far! Abilene has a surprising amount of art! The museums are pretty good and I LOVE the children's literature art museum (definitely more pics to come!). I've been helping the Cultural Affairs Council with the Gator Country show that's coming to town toting a CMT video crew as the network is doing an adventure reality show about the Gator Country guy. Neat, huh?

Sadly, I won't be in town for the actual event as I am going to Costa Rica to get certified to teach yoga!!!!!!!!! YAY!!!!!!! Again, good timing! As I was visiting yoga classes in the area, I learned that there's certainly a need for yoga teachers! As soon as they realized I was familiar with yoga, I was asked to sub and told about new gyms and other opportunities to teach... Hmmm, perhaps!

Most of the teachers around here are certified in Yoga Fit or some other Gold's Gym-type yoga. I knew from my "yoga snob" friends that I simply could NOT get my certification with a gym (my chances of teaching at an actual studio would certainly get hurt). But, since most "real yoga" certification programs are year-long weekend programs, I couldn't do it (we haven't been in one place long enough...) So, I started looking at yoga camp-type programs and learned that state-side is about the same price as an exotic location... and... Costa Rica it is!! YAY!

I'll be going in mid-February for three weeks. I'm certainly sad to leave Rob, but so pleased to miss the worst winter months of Texas. Yea, don't think I didn't plan a warm location in the frigid Texas February....

Anyway, I'd appreciate prayer for me when I go! Please pray that I'm open and loving of other people and that I'm so filled with Truth (God's absolute truth) that there's no room for false teachings (there's a lot of Hindu influence in yoga). Please also pray that I learn well and can communicate what I believe in "yoga language" such that others will understand it. I'm SO looking forward to going!!

Rob has been enjoying B-1 school. The pace is EXTREMELY slow compared to his pilot training and F-15 school!! I get anxious FOR him, asking, "Do you need to study? Can I help you make flashcards? Are you sure we can watch a movie tonight? Don't you have class tomorrow?" Nope. The pace is much slower!

Well, that's all for now! I realized I really needed to update the blog when a few of those who depend on it for keeping up-to-date on our lives started wondering if we were actually okay. Thanks for the concern! :-) We love you! It feels so good to be getting settled in and starting to have a more regular life. Of course the chaos will begin again soon enough!