Saturday, February 22, 2014
We are loving our new microwave! Last one didn’t have the express cook feature and this one has it from 30 seconds to 6 minutes. and it is so. quiet. Best of all, it doesn’t continue to beep nag us when the cook time is complete.
You know what I LOVE about reading Philip Yancey? He’s not afraid to barrel headlong into the hard questions even when it could make his readers ask “uhhhh. Is this guy even a CHRISTIAN?!“
Only one thing missing from today. A tin roof.
More photos of #thehomeprojectthatneverends: the living room makeover. the library.
The view out my back porch today. It’s raining so hard even a turtle is looking for shelter.
CLICK HERE to see the latest photos of the 2014 home makeover project. My very own mini LIBRARY.
FavoriteHusband and Bob have been fighting over this chair all day. FavoriteHusband just left the house.
You got about an hour and a half, Bob.
I know. that in a home improvement project, the house will go from bad to terrible to chaos before even coming close to better. But at this very moment, we have so many things happening at the same time, it feels like the light at the end of the tunnel is being carried in the opposite direction.
Sunday, February 23, 2014
Although we are hours behind our hoped for schedule, the game room baseboards are finished, every piece of furniture is back in place with felt on the bottom and the electronics are all hooked back up. Unfortunately, because of all the rain yesterday, we created a dependent task by using wood cutting power tools on the back porch. EVERY. THING. is covered in sawdust, which I have NO intention of cleaning up today. Next up. Laying the new flooring in the kitchen.
My husband just pulled the oven into the middle of the kitchen floor.
that. is. dis. gusting.
The kitchen floor will not be finished by the time we go to bed. At this point, both the fridge and the oven are in the middle of my kitchen. We just broke for dinner. Takeout from Gino’s. We’ve lived here since 1996 and we’ve only eaten there once. Four thumbs up. And the portion sizes are HUGE. Who can eat this much in one sitting? All four of us will be getting two meals out of our orders. Which is good. Because our fridge and stove are in the middle of the kitchen right now.
Monday, February 24, 2014
The fridge, stove and dishwasher are all where they should be. With new flooring under each. The room we thought would be the easiest has turned out to be the hardest. The kitchen is…1/4 – 1/3 finished.
We. are. tired.
You know what people don’t say enough? “dagnabbit.”
dagnabbit. No water comes out of the sink when I turn on hot and no water comes out of the fridge door when I try to get ice water. obviously, we’ve done something to break something. twice. or maybe just once with double consequences. But the floor under the fridge and dishwasher look excellent. Have I mentioned that I HATE dependent tasks? Especially when we actually CREATE them.
And two more dominoes fall in #thehomeprojectthatneverends. Both involving shopping. I hate shopping.
(1) Putting the loveseat back into the living room and we noticed it was actually THREADBARE. Not sure I’ve ever seen threadbare before, but this is definitely it. Found a new one I actually LOVE yesterday on accident when I was returning shelving to Big Lots. and it’s a floor model on clearance! FavoriteHusband is taking his truck this afternoon. REALLY hope it’s still there.
(2) 2nd domino is replacing the rolling office chairs we have around our kitchen table. Floor manufacturer’s instructions warn against the casters. Casters that meet specs are a minimum of $50 a set. $50+ each to make chairs that already have “cosmetic issues” more functional. no. I’ll be shopping for new kitchen chairs. Comfortable. Cheap.
CLICK HERE to see 2009 photos of our chair preference progression AND the threadbare loveseat before it was threadbare and the flooring we will be covering up this weekend.
That lizard Bob the cat presented to me and then set free in the house on Valentine’s Day?
And it’s clear that Bob found him first.
FavoriteHusband is picking up my new reading spot right now. Then we need to feed my old reading spot to the Whale POD (charity storage unit.) Hoping to lay more flooring in the kitchen tonight.
FavoriteHusband and I spent the last hour and a half laying only FOUR rows of flooring in the kitchen. He went into the garage to get tools to switch out the water filter on the back of the fridge.
Me, to FavoriteSon: “I tire of this game. I don’t want to play anymore.”
FavoriteSon: “Then quit. Make dad do it.”
Me: “That wouldn’t be very nice.”
FS: “Well, then stop complaining.”
Me: “yeah. That’s not gonna happen.”
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
It is February 25th. Who knows why my daughter is ECSTATICALLY HAPPY it is FINALLY February 25th?
(digital HD release of Disney’s Frozen)
If you know me, you probably already know this. In the context of my everyday interactions with people, I am very open about my faith. Because I’ve learned that if I hide the thing that is most important in my life from the people I interact with in an effort to make them more comfortable, we will never be true friends. They will never know who I really am. I will be a big fake. The hiding would be deceitful. I tell people about my faith in Christ because it is such a integral part of my life that to hide it from people would be to hide myself. It would keep people at a distance.
The rest of the flooring is going to go down SLOWLY. The reason? We are working BACKwards. Up until the kitchen, we were working north to south, which meant we were laying flooring on TOP of the last laid row. In order to match up with the connecting room, we have to lay the kitchen south to north, which means that every. single. plank. has to be tucked UNDER the previous row. The adhesive is STRONG. If we let any part of the planks touch before they are positioned, it is a struggle to readjust.
“I’ve found my bliss.” and/or “I need to find my bliss.”
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
To continue from yesterday…Here’s what evangelism looks like in my life: When I interact with people, the first thing I want to do is get to know more about them as an individual. I ask questions. I listen. I ask more questions. and I listen. Sometimes, the other person shares something about their own life or experiences or goals or dreams or obstacles or fears that calls to my mind something in my own life and experience – something which relates in some way to what they’ve shared with me. Since Christ is such an integral part of my life, it’s only natural that those experiences would be saturated by His presence and influence.
I don’t filter God out of my life stories to make other people more comfortable.
What about you? Do you filter out what Christ has done and is doing in your life in an effort to make people more comfortable? To make yourself easier to like? Are you hiding the most important part of yourself and in the process, sabotaging the potential for authentic friendships? Are you keeping people at a distance? Settling for another acquaintance when you could have a true friend? What happens if you give the other person more credit than that? What happens if you trust them accept you for who you are even if they are different than you?
(this is an excerpt from one of my February 2013 blog posts – CLICK HERE to read the full post)
Would this count as a Rick Roll?
PinkGirl, on the ride home from school: “Mom! Did you know there’s a gorilla that can communicate using sign language?”
PinkGirl: “Her name is Koko.”
Me: “I know.”
PinkGirl: “I want a gor…”
PinkGirl: “But she’s so swe…”
Me: “No. You may NOT have a gorilla.”
PinkGirl, trying to pack her lunch in our construction zone kitchen: (spoken wistfully): “Mom. Do you remember…when we used to have a counter?”
Me: “yes. smart alec kid.”
PinkGirl, point waving at all the painting and flooring supplies: “and I didn’t make this mess.”
LONG overdue catharsis. no holds barred. (my latest blog post): The lying tempter would persuade.
(click the link above or the Jim Carrey photos below to read the full post)
Thursday, February 27, 2014
We put the game room back together last weekend.
FavoriteSon: “It’s not really a man cave.”
Me: “You use this room more than anyone else. It’s a man cave.”
FavoriteSon: “There’s a quote by Henry David Thoreau on the wall. It’s not a man cave.”
Me, to FavoriteSon: “Part of me says (excited voice) ‘Your Dad is coming home today!!’ and part of me says (depressed voice) ‘Your Dad is coming home today.’”
FavoriteSon: “Because you have to get back to work on the house?”
yes. I did miss him. But it was a wonderful two days off.
Seriously affirmed in my reasoning to create and publish facebook compilation blog posts. Working on one now and there’s so much stuff I flat out can NOT find on facebook that I know I posted less than a week ago. It’s like it disappeared. If you think facebook is a great way to chronicle your everyday life, it’s not. I’m going to try and do these compilation posts from here on out – and post on my own blog. Where I have control of content.
I LOVE my daughter’s school and the middle school teachers. She just called me in uncontrollable happy tears to tell me how much she loves me because she just came out of drama class where her classmates (PinkGirl included) just “poured their hearts out about everything they were all going through and how we’re all so thankful and blessed that we have Christ in our lives to help us and…” Her next class was Bible and she asked to go to the office to call me and ask me to come up to school so she could hug me. I’m outta here. #ilovemydaughter
Just got back from going to PinkGirl’s school to give her a requested mid-day bear hug. One of the kids involved in that heart-wrenching discussion was sharing really, really hard things and everyone was telling him it would be okay. PinkGirl said: “I can’t promise you everything will be okay. At least not the way we see our life. But it will be okay the way God sees it. I think God is using the things in our lives to mold us into the people we’re going to be. It’s like a blacksmith. Sometimes, a blacksmith has to heat stuff up and hit it really hard with a hammer to mold it into something beautiful. The blacksmith knows what he’s making.”
#ilovemydaughter #seepeople #reachout
EVERY day matters. EVERY conversation matters. Don’t settle for conversations about nothing. Platitudes can be lies. Ask questions that let your friends and family KNOW you care about them and talk about things really that matter, even if it makes them uncomfortable. Even if it makes them back away. Even if people think you’re too serious. It doesn’t mean you are wrong. It means they aren’t ready. #lessonsfrommydaughter
HOW have I never seen this? I LOVE smart fast funny! so. good.
I add “read books” to my to-do list every day so I know I’ll get at least one thing done.
Here’s another facebook compilation blog post. Everything I posted on facebook between February 15th thru 21st, all on one page. Because sometimes stuff on facebook doesn’t show up in my newsfeed. or disappears.
Whenever I see something arrogantly or sarcastically hateful on facebook, I can’t help but wonder what is going on in that person’s life that would prompt them to take time and effort out of their probably otherwise demanding day to be openly and intentionally hurtful to strangers. or friends. #seepeople #edify
To see more previous facebook update and compilation blog posts, CLICK HERE.
For those of you who don’t follow me on facebook…
What time did you wake up? PinkGirl came in our room at 8:52am.
I told her the time was too weird to get up and I had to snooze for 8 minutes.
Toto, I don’t think we’re in Orlando anymore. #mykindamovietheater
“Julie’s road trip driving tips:
1. If your vehicle has cruise control, it must be used.
2. If you set the cruise control on your vehicle, leave it alone. seriously.
3. If you feel compelled to constantly change the speed of the cruise control, let someone else drive.
4. If you pull in front of me and tap your brakes, my family will be forced to hear the nonsensical rant of Yosemite Sam until I can pass you. and probably for at least 60 to 90 seconds after that. #homesweethome “
“Out with the old (1996), in with the new. I can’t believe I actually picked FLOWERS on purpose.
“I love the sound of my kids laughing together. #dontblink”
“My daughter is so lucky I only post stuff about her with her permission. so. very. very. lucky. #ilovemydaughter”
“Waiting for PinkGirl in car line. I’m gonna miss this when FavoriteSon’s classes start. I’ll only get to drive his car on Fridays.”
After the National Championship game that night:
“The Mills men will sleep soundly tonight. Eventually.”
“Setting up Outlook 2013 on my new desktop. Just Googled “Outlook 2013 ugly” #ewww”
“This just seems like a band who got tired of trying to think of a name.
Maybe there’s artistic quirkiness or deep profoundness I’m unaware of.”
“This is what PinkGirl looked like when she got in the car after school today. #ilovemydaughter”
“In my dream last night, James Garner was a drug dealer. But I think it was okay because he was the one buying the drugs from himself. And the drug turned out to be a very rare cheese. #ihavenoidea”
I wrote a few weeks ago that when my head is a mess, I am compelled to order my environment. In practical application, this means three things: cleaning. purging. painting.
and I guess decorating. If you count framing stuff I’ve been meaning to frame for…ever. and putting new flooring in downstairs. and getting rid of useless decorative items that just take up space in my house.
Like a bowl of rocks.
at one point in my life, I PAID for a bowl of rocks and put them on a flat surface in my house. To hold candles. Candles that are – to this day – still wrapped in plastic.
purging. This particular purge isn’t so bad. The biggest purge I’ve done was after my hysterectomy in 2009. That was bad. My house and it’s contents suffered nearly two years of female neglect because of chronic anemia and limited activity, followed by another 6 months of recovery after the surgery.
This purge is deeper.
A stripping down to basics purge.
On May 31st, I said I wanted “I want every superfluous thing in my house gone. GONE.” I’m looking at EVERYTHING in my house as if I were moving. Would I want to pack it? or get rid of it?
I’ve thrown away and shredded so. much. paper. We’ve already made one trip to the dump. I’ve completely emptied every bathroom cabinet and only put back the things we need. I’ve gotten rid of pointless dust collecting decorations, including the bowl of rocks. I’ve even gotten rid of over 100 books.
I’ve been posting some of my progress on my public facebook page. You don’t even need to have a facebook account to see it.
Yesterday’s facebook post:
An entire pick-up truck load of furniture and multiple boxes of books, clothing, appliances, and pointless decorative dust collectors – all now in the FUMCO Whale of a Sale storage POD. I have zero dining room chairs and I do not care. I didn’t love them and they took up too much space, so they had to go. Based on that criteria, all members of my family will be staying. I suppose the cats can stay too. Tomorrow? The linen closet purge. I have to make room for the single tablecloth and the single set of placemats I’m keeping after giving away my buffet. #pruning #purging
Today’s facebook posts:
11:57am – Can’t decide what to do today. So I’m going to do everything. 5 minutes at a time. & fb/tweet my progress for accountability & motivation.
12:15pm – 1st micro-action of the day: Weeding the rose bed. Took 10 minutes. Love it when a huge bunch of weeds turns out to be a lot of runners.
12:23pm – How many fridge shelves can I clean in 5 minutes? Three. & I cooled off enough to go back outside. I’m gonna need shoes. #microactions
1:15pm – Prune long neglected roses-10 minutes, put roses in vase, download & learn photo editing app-15 min. #microactions (click any of the photos to enlarge)
3:06pm – An hour deep cleaning the kitchen, including the window, the front of the cabinets, the wall, the prints and my cobalt. More dust collecting decorations to get rid of. #microactions
3:13pm – This is going to be hideous. & hot. But tomorrow is yard waste day. Any guesses how long it will take? #microactions
4:06pm – If you do it fast enough, weeding is cardio. (posted “before” pic earlier) #microactions
4:56pm – 20 minutes to make this mess. But my view is much clearer. Gotta bind all this up after I pick PinkGirl up.#microactions
9:28pm – Got on a roll. FavoriteSon and I mowed and he whacked weeds while I bound up what seemed to equate to a small forest. I ran out of daylight. And I may have discovered a new smell. A cross between sunscreen, bug spray, gasoline and sweat. #pruning #purging
I took an antihistamine and an anti-inflammatory. Hopefully, I’ll be good to go tomorrow. I never did get to that linen closet today.
[CLICK HERE to see a listing of all the blog posts in this series "the search for Joy."]
My husband is scared right now.
happy. but scared.
Happy because of all the stuff I’m getting rid of. And I’m getting rid of a LOT of stuff. a LOT of stuff.
Scared because of the honey-do list that goes along with ordering my environment.
I’m so thankful to God for him. He is my density.
In the middle (and at the bottom) of stirring this mess in my head, he said: “You really need to work through this. I don’t recognize you. It’s like you’ve given up. I don’t know whether to encourage you or give you a swift kick in the butt. You’ve lost your mojo.”
mojo. is that another word for faith?
It was bad. I couldn’t even pray.
What does faith look like when you can’t even pray?
it’s not pretty.
I needed to think. I need to think.
And so I clean my house. I paint my house. I purge my house. of books even. over 100 so far. I want every superfluous thing in my house gone. GONE.
GONE I tell you!
physically and metaphorically.
But in the middle of all the thinking I’m reading two books right now.
I know. But yes. These two are thick.
and not in a benchpress them kind of way.
FirstHusband suggested I re-read these books. Smart guy.
I’ve read both of them before. But I was younger then. Not that much younger. But still.
They were both responsible for pivot points in my faith.
In all my thinking and purging, I need to go back to bones of what I believe and why.
Messy deep digging blog posts ahead.
Even so, if you know me IRL (in real life), don’t weird out when you see me in person. If you’re at a loss about what to say, we can talk about the little blond girl’s face at the end of this commercial. cracks me up every time.
[CLICK HERE to see a listing of all the blog posts in this series "the search for Joy."]