F Simple and Serene Living 09 10
Monday, April 22, 2019

SETTLING IN

It seems like forever since I've posted, and in fact it has been over a month. I can't believe that I have actually made the move to Atlanta. It is something I have wanted for years and it now has happened. 


As I sit here typing I am looking at a lot of boxes left to be unpacked. I moved in last Tuesday and I have been working pretty much every day unpacking, but I have so many boxes. 

Also, I took some time off this weekend for family. I love being able to hop in my car and spend time with them. Saturday was Sidney's ballet concert for her youth ballet company. I wish I had photos, but there was a sign that said no photos or videos allowed so I wasn't able to take any. I did however, find this photo of her that they used for their promotion. 


Needless to say she was wonderful and I was so proud. 

Yesterday of course was Easter so I spent most of the day with family. There was brunch, blowing bubbles with Tessa, and playing games with Jack Henry, who broke his ankle a few days ago, and my daughter Katy. 


Jack Henry has an appointment with a surgeon today to see what needs to be done. I feel so bad for him because he had so many activities planned that he will now not be able to do. Whitewater rafting and horse back riding don't work well with a broken ankle. 

Tessa informed me that she would start to come over to my apartment soon so I need to add to my craft supplies, and that I might need to keep a couple of my packing boxes so we can make a fort.  She's making a list for me. We are also going to have some peanut butter picnics as we explore local parks. 


I am feeling very happy and very much at home in Atlanta already.

Well those boxes are not going to unpack themselves so back to work.  


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Friday, March 8, 2019

ALL BOXED IN

Where does the time go? I can't believe we are already into the second week of March. 

I have been so busy getting ready for my move that I haven't had time for much else, and as you can see I am becoming surrounded by boxes.


I finally have a moving date. I will be leaving here on April 15th and moving into my new apartment in Atlanta on the 16th. 

Later this month I will be taking a trip down to Atlanta to tie up some loose ends and to deliver a car to my daughter. My mom left me her car, but I am gifting it to my daughter whose car bit the dust recently. Everything has a way of working out. 


I do know one thing, I won't be sorry to leave the crazy weather behind. I am ready for spring.


In the meantime I am living surrounded by boxes and I have to work on finding movers. I'm so glad that I gave myself plenty of time to pack everything up because I don't seem to work as quickly as I once did. 

Sorry that I haven't been able to do much visiting lately, but hopefully after I get settled in my new home I can get back to my routine. 

I am looking forward to more family time, regular walks, exploring my new city, and so much more. And I can't wait to share it all with you. 




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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

I'M STILL HERE

How is it possible that it has been so long since I've posted? Time is really ticking on.


I have been so busy packing, finishing up the work on my mother's estate, and battling sickness that I haven't even felt like opening my computer.

Last week I woke up in the middle of the night with my arm killing me. I knew I must have pulled something packing so I got up in the dark to get some Tylenol. When I did I jammed my toe into a packed box. 


I had three choices. I could burst into tears, cuss, or start laughing hysterically. In the heat of the moment I think I may have done all three. 

Thank goodness I already had an appointment with the doctor the next day for what I knew was a sinus infection.


Diagnosis was yes, a sinus infection, a strained tendon in my arm, and I told him not to bother looking at my toe as there wasn't anything to be done about it anyway. 

He told me to go home, take my antibiotic, and rest. The antibiotic taking was easy. Resting, not so much.


I am next in line for an apartment in Atlanta so I am waiting for a call. Once she calls me I have to move in 30 days. It takes me a lot longer to pack than it used to, which is why there are boxes stacked all over my apartment. 


Meanwhile, I am trying to sell off everything in my booth as I won't be having a booth in Atlanta, and to add insult to injury I got a jury summons notice for February 28. My doctor has written a letter to try and get me excused, but I have to show up that day and present it to the judge. 

My father used to say "life gets teejus (tedious)". He sure was right.






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Sunday, February 3, 2019

FEBRUARY THANKSGIVING WITH FRIENDS

Saturday morning I was up early to put the turkey in the oven. 

Wait??? What??? Isn't this February? Well yes it is, but I had a turkey in the freezer that was waiting for a special occasion. 

What could be more special than a Groundhog day lunch with friends? 


(Puppies and grandchildren toes are good too)

I sort of missed Thanksgiving in November. My mom was too ill to eat, although I went out and got her a meal, and a week later she passed away. 

Two months have passed and as I am looking forward to moving in the near future I am trying to clean out my freezer. I suggested a Saturday potluck to a few friends and they were quick to jump on the bandwagon. 



We divided up what each person would bring for our February Thanksgiving and as I had the turkey and a southern pecan pie that was from my mom's freezer I put my name down for those. 

I have lost many friends over the years so I have learned to value friendships while I have them. 

My two closest friends from college both passed away 20 years ago. My close friend in California passed at the age of 46.



I had two best friends growing up in Canada. I lost track of one of them, and although I have since tracked down where she is, I was told she didn't want anything to do with the people from her childhood and so I have respected that. 

My other friend and I were keeping in touch sporadically and I was hoping to go and visit her soon. I knew that things seemed off with her the last few years, but was shocked to learn from another childhood friend that my smart, sassy, lawyer friend was now in a nursing home with early onset dementia. 

Friends are a blessing. They are people who choose to spend time with us just because they like us. We don't know how long they will be with us, but they are a very important part of our lives. I appreciate mine every day.






P.S. I didn't post any photos of my friends because they didn't want their pictures taken. They are all wonderful and beautiful. 
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Thursday, January 24, 2019

SMALL KITCHEN WALL SPACE

My kitchen is not huge, but the kitchen in the apartment that I am moving to is definitely smaller and I won't have room for my vintage kitchen cart like I have now. 


(You can see that I took the photo as is. I'm packing and didn't have the energy to pretty it up for a photo.) 

I don't need a huge kitchen. After all there is only one of me and I am not doing much in the way of major cooking or baking. 

Here are a couple of quick shots of the kitchen I will have in Georgia.



As you can see it is a galley style kitchen.

Although I don't do a lot of fancy cooking, I do need storage for all my kitchen gadgets and as there is not a lot of counter space I would like to keep things put away as much as possible. 

One idea is to utilize the wall at the end of the kitchen as vertical space. I found so many ideas on Pinterest that I meant to post this yesterday but suddenly found I was into the next day. I think I went into a Pinterest trance. 

There were of course lots of Ikea ideas. They really do have some great options, and as I will be close to one in Atlanta I can shop to my heart's content.



I love all of the different configurations and they hopefully wouldn't break the bank.

I have always liked the idea of pegboard in the kitchen. This really makes great use of the space. 


This is clever and cute. The homeowner has taken bed slats and turned them into a wall unit to hang kitchen gadgets.


I am getting a lot of great ideas, but I will have to wait until I finally move in order to make a decision.

In the meantime I'll be busy pinning ideas to my boards on Pinterest.











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Friday, January 18, 2019

MARY OLIVER SPOKE TO OUR SOULS

I love poetry and I especially love poetry that is simple and speaks to my soul.


Mary Oliver's poetry did that for me as it did for so many others. There was a joy in her nature inspired poetry, but she also wrote about the darker side of life. She wrote about the abuse she suffered as a child and about the lung cancer that almost took her life. 


Although she won a Pulitzer Prize, what she seemed to want more was that her poetry spoke to people. Oliver said, "Poetry to be understood must be clear. It mustn't be fancy,"

Inspired by her long walks in nature, she captured a spirituality that appealed to so many people.


Mary Oliver left this life on Thursday. She was 83 years old and had been suffering with lymphoma. 

Her poem, "When Death Comes" spoke of how she wanted her own death to be.

When Death Comes

When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox

when death comes,
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

and therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as a possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
tending, as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it's over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it's over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real

I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.

--Mary Oliver

I hope you found your final journey to be a joyous one full of curiosity.

I know that you left this world a richer place.

Thank you.


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Saturday, January 12, 2019

CHANGES

We go through so many changes in our lives, good and bad. The week started off with temperatures in the sixties, but today I woke up to this. 


After almost sixty eight years of having a mother to talk to I have had to learn to live without mine. 

Every day I find myself almost picking up the phone to call her about something only to realize she is no longer on the other end. It's difficult, but it gets a bit easier each day. I don't think we ever completely get over losing our mothers, but I know that my mom wanted me to move on with my life.


I am the executrix of her estate and it requires a lot more work and responsibility than I thought. I have three siblings, so I have to make sure that I am very careful with everything. 

In the middle of all of this I am getting ready to make another change in my life. I will be moving to Atlanta soon. I put my name on a waiting list for a senior apartment there a couple of years ago and my name is getting ready to come up. 


The timing is good as I am now the only member of my immediate family left in Kentucky, but it is also bittersweet. 

So, in the middle of handling the estate, I am packing up my apartment and trying to get the merchandise in my booth sold. I am not planning to have a booth in Atlanta. It's time to move on from that. 

I have temporarily shut down my Etsy shop and my online shop while I make the move. I do plan to continue selling online, but may make changes in how I do it. I have a lot of vintage jewelry that was my mom's and I will be selling that along with some vintage lingerie. I'm thinking Instagram may be a good place for those items. 

I am really looking forward to living close to my daughters and grandchildren. They are most important to me. 


Life is always changing and we either have to go with those changes or get left behind. I for one don't plan on getting left behind.


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Friday, December 21, 2018

MERRY CHRISTMAS

This has been a difficult month since the death of my mom, but it was also a favorite time of the year for her. I remember when she had three large Christmas trees and other small ones in her home. She loved decorating. Well in later years she really loved directing us as we decorated her house. 


Tomorrow I leave for Atlanta to spend Christmas with my family. It will be wonderful to be distracted by the excitement of my grandchildren and to think about normal things. 

I hope all of you have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. For those of you who may not celebrate Christmas I hope you have a wonderful holiday season.

I will be back to blogging after the New Year and may have some news to share with you. 


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Sunday, December 9, 2018

REMEMBERING MY MOM

It has been a very hard few weeks. My mom who at the age of 94 maintained fairly good health, passed away November 30th. 

This photo was taken about 15 years ago. Not very clear.

She had a mild heart attack the week before Thanksgiving, and her health deteriorated very quickly over the next couple of weeks. 

My mom had always set a goal of living to be one hundred and we all believed she would. After all her older brother is still living at 98 and she was in better health than him. 

However, it wasn't meant to be and after a tough couple of weeks she left us. She had been admitted to the hospital on Wednesday the 28th and was very ill. Still, the nurses and the doctor were shocked when she was talking to them one minute and the next she closed her eyes and was gone.  

The last thing she told me as I walked out the door Thursday night was that she loved me and I said I love you too, Mom. 

She had told me several times over the last few days of her life that she was ready to go, but I didn't believe her. I'm glad that when she decided it was her time she went peacefully. 

My mom was always known as a firecracker, but everyone always talked about how sweet she was. I guess that was a good combination. Her feistiness will be missed.
I don't think we are ever prepared to lose our mothers, no matter how old we are. Like many mothers and daughters we didn't always have a perfect relationship, but I will miss her terribly. I already do. 

I find myself reaching for the phone to call her to talk about silly things. We spoke every day. I wish I could hear her voice just one more time. 

I know she is happy now and there is no more pain. She is reunited with family and friends who have gone before her. For her there is nothing but pure joy now.

Those of us who are left behind will have to survive on our memories.

P.S. I will hopefully get back to posting more soon. I am trying to clean out my mom's apartment and as I am also the executor of her estate there is a lot to do with that. 





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Thursday, November 22, 2018

THANKSGIVING

I hope you all have a holiday weekend filled with simplicity and serenity.


With love from me to you,

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