Pictures Worth Thousands of Words and Roads Less Traveled

100_1824

They say a picture is worth a thousand words.  For several weeks now my (non)posts have been missing about a thousand words each.

I have thought of things to write; I’ve even written a few posts in my head that never made it to paper or internet.  I have wanted to write, but the gumption just wasn’t there, or I was out of town, or sick, or busy….

So, I thought I’d catch you up on what has been going on and let the pictures tell the story (there may be some words, ok).

1.  The front porch received a much needed overhaul (this spanned April and May and included my brother. It is June and we still have a few tweaks to finish):

100_1565

New Porch ceiling being installed.  This also shows the general before shape of the porch.  (you can imagine the sagging vinyl that was over the original rot and sag boards.)
New Porch ceiling being installed. This also shows the general before shape of the porch. (you can imagine the sagging vinyl that was over the original rot and sag boards on the ceiling.)
Some of the old original ceiling boards after they were taken down.
Some of the old original ceiling boards after they were taken down. And a new board on top – not sure why.
My new blue porch ceiling.  I have wanted one for a long time. (The ladder is an indication that we also put in new gutters).
My new blue porch ceiling. I have wanted one for a long time. (The ladder is an indication that we also put in new gutters).
We also cleaned and scraped the porch wall and trim so we could paint.
We also cleaned and scraped the porch wall and trim so we could paint.
More cleaning prep before painting.
More cleaning prep before painting. Lucky my Dad has a pressure washer and is good at holding a board to protect the newly painted wall.
100_1676
In the midst of all the redoing (that began in April) my Iris’s bloomed. The underpinning to the porch will need some attention soon – the verdict is still out on exactly what will be done.
This view shows the newly painted ceiling, porch wall, trim and the new lights.
This view shows the newly painted ceiling (summer sky – Valspar), porch wall (puppy paws – Olympic), trim and the new lights. (And my neighbors porch that could use a redo).  The puppy paws would not have been my first (or second or third…) choice for the house, but since we are not going to do a major house repaint for awhile, we decided to just freshen up the porch wall, embrace our inner puppy and live with the color that the previous owner  chose.
100_1812
This shot shows the newly painted floor. It is called Handcast Pewter which is a Glidden color, however I had it mixed at Lowe’s in the Valspar Latex Porch and Floor – Satin finish. I love the color, but it is going to show dust and dirt really bad. In the background you can see my Oxford Garden Shorea wood furniture (love my swing) and the cushions and rug for my porch. It still needs to be staged and tweaked. Waiting on the rain to go away.

Proverbs 24:3-4 – applies to porches too, I would think:

By wisdom a house is built,
and through understanding it is established;
through knowledge its rooms are filled
with rare and beautiful treasures.

I'm so going to love my porch.  Once it is finally put together I'll do a post and show you the finished look and maybe give a few details etc.  Love my porch.  This little crooked house is the first time I've had a proper front porch in 29 years of marriage.
I’m so going to love my porch. Once it is finally put together I’ll do a post and show you the finished look and maybe give a few details etc. Love my porch. This little crooked house is the first time I’ve had a proper front porch in 29 years of marriage. Did I mention that I love my porch?

2.  We also took a vacation in April, but any posting I was doing that month was mostly on my other blog, Orange Comma, for the National Poetry Writing Month. Vacation was really a retreat.  We love to go to Fairhaven, which is in Roan Mountain, Tennessee, not too far from the North Carolina Border.  We love the peacefulness and we’re within an hour of several places that are touristy if we want that.  We mostly just soak in the peace and rest and read.  Here are a few pictures from this year:

They had added the sweetest little chapel since the last time we were there (October 2008).
They had added the sweetest little chapel since the last time we were there (October 2008). Psalm 122:1:

I WAS GLAD WHEN THEY SAID UNTO ME,      LET US GO INTO THE HOUSE OF THE LORD

The road leading to our Chalet - The Holly - you can see that the tress are just starting to spring up.  We were there the week of April 22 and it was still quite chilly.
The road leading to our Chalet – The Holly – you can see that the tress are just starting to spring up. We were there the week of April 22 and it was still quite chilly. Our chalet is on the left after the second curve just out of sight. We had a wonderful view of the mountain.
One day we drove over (up) to Blowing Rock, NC.  We had been there before, but had never actually paid to go see the Rock that made it so  famous.  You can see part of the Rock in this picture.  We were actually standing on the rock. Sort of.  It was nice, but there are other great views that are free, so I probably don't have to pay to see it again.
One day we drove over (up) to Blowing Rock, NC. We had been there before, but had never actually paid to go see the Rock that made it so famous. You can see part of the Rock in this picture. We were actually standing on the rock. Sort of. It was nice, but there are other great views that are free, so I probably don’t have to pay to see it again.
A group of very kind ladies offered to take our picture, since we had taken one of them.  So, for what it's worth here we are.
A group of very kind ladies offered to take our picture, since we had taken one of them. So, for what it’s worth here we are. I apparently don’t iron the hem of my sweater when I take it out of the dryer. The M on Mr Piano’s shirt is for Morhead State University, our Alma Mater. The mountains in the background are the view from the blowing rock.  I so love the mountains.  Give me a cabin in the mountains and some good books and I’m good to go.

3.  In the midst of traveling and redoing I took a week off to be sick.  No pictures available. Proverbs 17:22:

A joyful heart is good medicine

4.  The most exciting thing that happened while I was not writing a thousand words was that Mr Piano graduated.  He is now Doctor Mister Piano.  He received his DMA degree (Doctor of Musical Arts in piano performance) from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky on May 17.  WooHoo!  Finally!  Yea! We have some pictures to prove it:

Ready for rehearsal and the composite picture.
Ready for rehearsal and the composite picture.
rocky.teresa.grad.2
Here we are in Dr. Mohler’s extensive library. A reception was hosted for the graduates and it included a meet and greet at the Presidents home. The library is several rooms with over 46,000 volumes.
Diploma in hand.  We're ready for the next chapter.
Diploma in hand. We’re ready for the next chapter.  God has a plan.

Jeremiah 29:11:

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

5.  We celebrated 29 years of marriage on June 2.  It was Sunday and Mr. Piano had an afternoon rehearsal, so we went to a local Mexican restaurant for a meal and didn’t really do a major celebration.  We may take a day trip soon in honor of the event.  Either way every day with Mr. Piano is a celebration, so we’re all good.  Here is a picture or a few of the original event all those years ago:

da da da da....almost there, bride escorted by her father, Lowell Tackett
I was a true Southern Belle y’all – I have the dress to prove it.  Mr. Piano cried the whole time I was walking down the aisle.  True story.  They were happy tears.
Looking to the future!
We’ve only just begun to live, white lace and promises….
...a kiss for luck and we're on our way
…a kiss for luck and we’re on our way”.
Rocky was still crying...he was so happy
proof that there was crying by Mr. Piano – you can tell in this picture that there are some lingering tears. I think he is telling my mom how grateful he is for me 🙂
yellow fiat
“…so many roads to choose…”
We drove away in a little yellow Fiat. That car was responsible for our first married squabble, on our honeymoon, no less. I tried to drive it. On the interstate. It didn’t work out. I still can’t drive a stick shift. Needless to say, that car did not last long. That is not our little Fiat in the photo, nor is that couple us. I don’t seem to have any pictures of our car, so I found this one. Click on picture to take you to the source where I found it.

Ok, so I think this about sums up what I’ve been doing the past several weeks, you know, when I wasn’t writing.  If you already knew this stuff, then I apologize for boring you further.  I’ll try to come up with some fresh perspective to write about soon.

6.  Oh, I almost forgot.  I did visit several cemeteries on Memorial Day – one I had never been to before where several of my ancestors were buried, like my great great grandparents and uncles.  It was a peaceful, sweet little cemetery in the middle of a farm that is now privately owned:

100_1717

Two roads diverged in a wood and I — I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference

Doctor Mister Piano and I have always taken the road less traveled.  I have no regrets.  I’m excited to see what’s around the next bend.

Traveling in Grace,

Sadie

Advertisements

Home

100_0548.11

This little house sits next door to the house that has been our family home since the summer I was 16.  My parents still live there.  Over the years there were many neighbors in the little house.  For a few years a wonderful couple lived there after they retired from the military. When they passed away, the house went on the market and eventually a young teacher ended up with the house.  She painted it Puppy Paws, which I believe is an Olympic paint from Lowe’s.  It has a rather pinkish cast.  Anyway, she lived here for a year or so and then got married and they lived here another year, then they accepted teaching jobs elsewhere and put the house on the market.  We almost bought it then, in 2007.  But we didn’t.

Three years and three renters later, my Dad was tired of not knowing who his neighbors would be, he was tired of his steep driveway and wanted back access to his property and I was hankering for a little house to call my own even if it was only on weekends.  So, we made a deal.  He’d buy the property, We (meaning my brother, his assistant and my dad) would fix up the house and then when Mr. Piano graduates we’d purchase the house from him.  In the meantime we’d have a little weekend get away and a little cottage to come home to on school breaks etc.  I’d always thought it would be fun to have a second home like those people you read about who can actually afford a vacation home.

The only hitch in having my second home?  I didn’t really have my first home since I was living in a campus apartment and had sold my dream home in Tennessee when we moved to Louisville for my husband to attend school.  See picture below:

222763_20882883064_838993064_489369_8172_n

I’ve always done things backwards and there is a rather satisfying sense of irony in having my second home before I have my first home.  So to speak.  And just so we are clear, I do not have the means to own two homes in any real sense of the phrase ‘two homes’.  It’s not all that.  We got a really good deal on the little house because….brace yourself….this is a sampling of the condition it was in when we found it:

100_0554The kitchen looks totally different now, thanks to my brother.  We were fortunate that the fall of 2010 his business slowed down enough for him to spend the fall and winter doing updates and he was reasonably priced.  And he is talented.  And we did the bare minimum to make it work as a little get away house.  Nothing fancy, just clean and simple.  I will do some before and after posts soon.

To be fair to previous owners, the young teacher had the house very clean and did some painting and updates, but unfortunately the renters after she moved out weren’t so kind to the house.  We gathered several, like at least 13, large, yard, garbage bags full of junk that the last renter had left behind.  It looked like she had left in a hurry as there was something in a pan on the stove that looked like chili and my Dad found out the hard way that we shouldn’t open the refrigerator door.  It had to be thrown away which is a shame as it looked fairly new.  We let our appliance guy recycle the stove when we purchased a new one as I wasn’t too thrilled with keeping it either after seeing the “leftovers” in the pan (we’re talking several weeks).  I have a picture of the garbage we threw out, when I find it I’ll scan it and let you see that I’m not making this up!

So, here we are two and a half years later and our “second” home has become our only home.  For awhile at least.  Mr. Piano, is getting ready to defend his dissertation on January 15th.  After that he will do some final editing and then it will be off to be bound and printed, then we wait for graduation in May.  He was supposed to graduate in December, but, well, that is a long story, and a stressful one, and really couldn’t be helped. He is essentially done and after next week, he will be done, but since graduation only happens twice a year, it won’t be official until May.  Then, God willing, he will have a teaching job in the fall.  He has been applying like crazy to colleges.  Frankly, we don’t know where we’ll end up, or when we’ll be there.

In the meantime we remain here in the Little House, in a small Kentucky ‘burg, living in our second home, waiting on a job that will presumably take us to our first home, unless, something would pop up close by and then our second home could be our first home.  We are open to God’s plans.  We wait on him because we know he is faithful.  We are learning to rest, trust, and listen.  In Him we Remain, because he is our true home.

100_0754.11

Remaining in Grace,

Sadie