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Lots of excitingness going on in VA lately.
Somebody in Washington must’ve seen the Blue Screen of Death, because they had to shut down the government, wait 16 days and then re-boot. It still doesn’t seem to be quite right; lots of lag.

Some truckers tried to de-frag the hard drive, but it just brought everything to a halt while we stared at the screen and waited for the process to complete. Ultimately, did no good.

About the only thing that’ll fix this mess is a complete wipe and return to default manufacturer settings. Unfortunately, that will have to wait until November 5th, by which time the drama will have been forgotten. We will have become accustomed to working with a more inefficient system and the lag will become the norm.
In other news, Square Peg Farm was dealt a low blow, courtesy of some deer who got very hungry for pumpkins just a few weeks prior to opening day. The mini pumpkins survived, as did the gourds, so Allie set up a farm stand.

It’s really cute and she has had a few customers stop by, which is always super exciting. Next year, there will be fencing and fortifications and possibly a moat surrounding our pumpkins. Lesson learned.

The feel-good story of late:
Every morning I walk Tater down the adorable country lane (read:driveway) to meet the school bus. Last Tuesday, we’re walking down, past the horse pasture, and he asks me if I smell “that”. I say “what?” He says there must be flowers or something because something smells really awesome and we look around to see what could possibly be blooming in mid-October that would smell so nice.
Me: All I see is a bunch of horse crap.
Tate: Maybe they Febreeze’d it.
*cymbal crash!*



It’s Fall! In addition to apples and pie and leaves and such, Fall makes me remember this adventure and giggle a little:

Last fall, I drove to Dothan, AL. The whole trip, however brief, was pretty eventful -but there were highlights. One of them was driving across the bridge spanning the Chatahoochee River. I was as surprised as you are to learn that it actually exists. Up until that point, I thought it was just a word Alan Jackson made up because he needed a rhyme. (I imagine it’s slim pickins when you’ve decided to use “hootchie cootchie” into your lyrics.) I’ve got to say that it was very pretty in real life: fall colors draped the tress that hung over the river banks, steam rose from the water that was, at 7am, warmer than the October air, a picturesqe bridge that just needed to be captured on film. Unfortunately, I didn’t stop to take a picture, I was trying to be on time for an appointment. What I did stop for was this:



ReBlogged from


Today’s blog isn’t funny, but I wanted to share it with you anyway.

We’ve had a rough patch here and there. Some stuff behind the scenes and some much less so. (I mean, it’s hard to hide a helicopter.) Today, I am thankful. Not because I think things will be peachy from now on, but because I was afforded the opportunity to re-examine what really matters.

Yesterday, I had an amazing conversation with my son. It “filled my bucket”, as my daughter would say and made it absolutely necessary that I stop right then and re-connect with an old friend. Many of you in SC know just the friend and may have had your own revelations. I sent an email; it was very personal and sincere. I debated as to whether I should share it and risk the vulnerability of public opinion.

Then, like so many other times, I decided: It’s my blog, I’ll say whatever I please! Who knows, maybe this is something that someone out there in Internet Land needed to hear… So I’ll share this with you:

My Dear Mr. Brown,

I hate that I am so terrible with communication and keeping up with folks. I think of you and your family often and cherish the time I spent with you in Beaufort. The business lessons, but more importantly, the life lessons that I learned in that short time have stayed with me and I am certainly a better person for the time you invested in me.

I want you to know how grateful I am.

Today, I had the blessing of sharing something I learned from you, with Tate. (Tate is now almost 5′ 8″ and 140lbs, by the way.)

A friend from school invited Tate to an event called “Collide” at his church. It’s a 3 night event, I’m guessing like a revival focused on middle & high school kids. Tate seemed to have a good time and told us about some of the topics they learned about. Then today, on our way to piano lessons, he reminded me that there was another session this evening. I was surprised that he was interested in going back. I expected him to be confused or maybe uncomfortable in a Baptist arena with his Catholic background.

And then… He said “You know Mom, Stone & I prayed today”. One of the lessons from last night was about prayer and apparently he and his friend, Stone, had planned to stop and pray after their first class together, so they did. Not an organized group, not because someone told them to, but because these 6th grade boys wanted to talk to their God. The class ended, they stepped to the side and they prayed. Out loud. I asked Tate what they prayed about and he told me that he’d said The Lord’s Prayer because it was the only one he could think of.

This is where you come in, Mr. Brown.

I talked to my son about prayer. I told him how I had always thought that prayers needed to be done quietly, on your knees by the bed, with your head bowed at the table, or mumbled together at church. I also told him that I used to think that prayers needed to be well thought out, very eloquent and probably kind of long. I mean, look who we’re talking too- that’s a lot of pressure!

Then, I was able to tell him how you changed my perspective on what makes a prayer. I told Tate that Mr. Brown prays all the time! Sometimes it’s short, sometimes it’s loud and always he is talking to God. I told Tate that sometimes I would walk in to the “cookie store” with a load of laundry and that you would stop what you were doing and raise your hands up and say “Lord, thank you for this beautiful day and for bringing my Laura here to share it with me!” I told Tate that was it, that was a prayer and just as meaningful as saying an “Our Father” during church.

I explained that you prayed like that all the time and that they were often prayers of Thanksgiving. This led to me explain that all too often, we get caught up in asking God for things or asking Him to fix something, give something, take something, that we forget to tell God “thank you” for what He has given us. Be thankful for the sunshine, your health, that you woke up today!

It was a brief conversation, but such an important one and one that I could only have with him because I learned it from you. I hope that the lesson sticks with him and I hope that it opens his mind to the amazing opportunities to speak directly to his God.

I also want you to know that hearing you call me by name in a prayer changed my life. It was “weird” to me when we first met. Just shouting out a quick prayer was not something my Yankee self had experienced. Besides, what made me so special? I was embarrassed that you were wasting God’s time by calling out to Him, just to tell Him I’d stopped by. I came to be thankful and honored by your friendship and touched that you took YOUR time to thank OUR God for the time we spent. I listened to how you prayed and learned (and still learning) to do it myself. It makes me feel good, it brings me peace, sometimes… And I’m sure the people in the car next to me in traffic get a giggle out of watching the crazy lady talk to herself. I don’t know if I’m great at it, but prayer is a much bigger part of my life, now that I know I can do it any ‘ole time!

For me to tell you “thank you” for giving me this gift to share, would not do justice to the level of gratitude I feel or the magnitude of your effect on our lives.

With Love,



A month. For those of you keeping score at home, it’s been a month.

I’ve been spending time working on personal enrichment. You know, trying to be a better person, making better choices… all that garbage. I’ve concentrated on one area at a time and at this point am still stuck on “if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all”. That’s why I couldn’t add a new blog; I didn’t have anything nice to say. Yeah… lets go with that.

Next, I think I’ll work on telling the truth. I think we all know the previous text is a big, fat lie. On what planet would I fail to speak my mind, regardless of the level of “nice-ness”?


It has certainly been busy Every. Single. Day. (Here in VA) School is back in session so, along with having the kids gone for the better part of the day

20130923-093903.jpg…I am now back to being a slave of an organized schedule.



Sooo… In the interest of getting back into the swing of things, I’m going to set up an archive page. A place to collect old blogs. (My hoarder self LOVES this idea.) You don’t need to stop me, I know you’ve already read at least some of this stuff. Still, maybe you missed the part where I survived the apocalypse (lived in Albany, GA) or the part where Jeff thought we were about to experience an apocalypse (lived too close to PG County)…

Your takeaway:
Be on the lookout for re-runs!


…and here’s your encore:

Two weeks of nothing and then posts two days in a row!?! Craziness! No worries, this one is short and less complain-y.

So, I saw this thing on Pinterest that said if you pull duct tape apart in a dark room, it glows blue.

I wonder if that really works, but I’m not curious enough to go to the trouble to find the tape, stick it to itself and then go in a dark room and try to rip it apart.
So I told Jeff about it. Sometimes, he’s like Mikey from the Life cereal commercial, he’ll try anything.
I was right; about 45 seconds later, he’s looking around the house for some duct tape that he’s sure was right here a couple days ago.

Now I giggle to myself, because I think I know where the tape is.

Over the weekend, Tate was out back practicing with his bow. He was trying to get an orange post to stand up on a hillside with a target attached to it. It’s not working very well and, after some trying, he leaves and comes back with duct tape.
Me: Hey Bug, are you trying to tape that thing to the ground?
Tate: Uhh… Maybe?
Me: Hmmm… How about we just grab a bale of hay from the barn?
Tate: Oh, I didn’t think of that. OK. Mom, did you just take a picture of me doing this?
Me: Yep.
Tate: Why?
Me: Because one of these days I won’t be able to find your birth certificate and I’ll need a way to prove you’re related to your Daddy…



I cannot focus on ANYTHING.
Imagine a picture of the Milky Way up in Outer Space. (Is Outer Space a proper noun, or should it just be outer space?) (See, I told you I can’t focus.) Anyway, think of all the tiny dots of stars & planets and how there are so many of them that they look like a foggy swirl. There are some random, larger, far away stars that can be seen individually and lots of space dust. That’s what my brain looks like.


My to-do list is getting quite long and my arms are quite tired from the juggling. I try to prioritize. It’s not that I procrastinate in all aspects of life, but sometimes the last minute is the only available minute I have to accomplish a task. Often, I do not even have that minute, but it becomes necessary to take time from something else in order to keep the plates spinning.

I’ve been concerned about getting another blog in, about getting some marketing material together for work, about doing something fun with the kids in the last few days of summer break, about overcoming my anesthesia anxiety & getting Allie to the dentist, about signing up for fall sports, about balancing the checkbook, about mulching the pumpkins, about getting the trainer back out to work with me & the horse, about getting caught up on laundry & putting away all the stuff that was not a priority when we moved in, about fixing the piano, about finishing the bathroom project I started 2 months ago so I can get the toilet out of my bedroom… It just keeps going into infinity. Into a swirl of space dust.
Now, with that said, I realize that I am fortunate to have the problems I have; it could be so much worse. Unfortunately, everything is relative and I’m afraid I might have finally gone crazy. Like for real. Like logical internal conversations crazy.
The other day, I was at a stop light at the Rte 17/Rte 1 interchange.

I was the second car in line behind someone who was clearly a Falmouth Bridge Intersection Virgin. I’m waiting through the fourth light, which would not have been necessary, had the driver in front of me done some actual driving. It is almost our turn.
Me: This guy had best be paying attention. I don’t need to be running any later than I already am.
Me: Umm, hello? Road Rage much?
Me: This is ridiculous! Some of us have places to go and this guy is a danger to himself and those around him. I swear, if he doesn’t use that long, skinny pedal when the light turns green, I’m going to…
Me: What. What exactly do you think you’re going to do, Laura?
Me: I’m serious.
Me: Ok then, when the light turns green, just get out of your car and walk up there and explain to this moron exactly what you think of his driving. That’ll be very helpful. Oh, wait, even at 22MPH, he’ll be very GONE by the time you get your seatbelt off. Who’s the real moron here?
Me: I really don’t need the sarcasm, I’ve got a lot on my mind. Whatever, I’ll let him live. We’re turning onto a four lane anyway. *sigh* This is so frustrating.
Me: Did you just have an entire conversation all by yourself?
Me: Yup
Me: Oh, this cannot be good.


It happened again this morning when I was trying to talk myself into looking at Pinterest for just 5 more minutes…
Me: Aww crap, it’s 7:03, I’m late for work. (Self imposed working schedule.)
Me: But it’s so peaceful on the deck and fresh air is good for you!
Me: You know the rules, no Pinterest after 7. You’ll get sucked in, you won’t get anything done and you’ll end up with a headache.
Me: Last time I checked, I’m a grown up and I can look at sarcastic eCards if I want to.
Me: Great, when you’re stressed out later because you got less than nothing done today, I don’t want to hear about it.
Me: This is America…
Me: Shut up.
Me: That’s not a very nice way to talk to yourself.
Me: You’re making excuses. Just turn off the phone and get going.
Me: *pouty face* Fine.
** go to computer, screen freezes, have to restart**
Me: Darn the luck! I guess while I’m waiting for the reboot, I’ll just see what’s happening on Twitter…
Me: *Rolls eyes*

I have to take pictures of three different houses on the other side of the county and be at an appointment on the opposite side in 97 minutes.
My space dust decided to stop & write a blog.
Concentration… I wonder if there’s an app for that?


So, here’s the deal. Today in VA… We have a Jesus Tree.

I know. Ponder it.

Before I tell you about it, I feel it may be necessary to emphasize that in NO way, shape or form am I in ANY way -expressed or implied- making fun of my God, your God or anybody else’s God. If anything, I am mocking myself, those people that see Jesus on toast, rock formations, dog butts, etc. and possibly Jeff, since he was there too.

Last night, we were out in the field checking on our growing pumpkin plants and guess what??

Yes! We’re going to have a Baby Pumpkin!!
This is super exciting and slightly ahead of schedule andwearesooooexcited!!

So, we’re walking back to the house and Jeff says, “Look at that tree over there, it looks like a guy pointing at something.” He was totally right, so we laughed and I did my best statue impression…
Then… Jeff says, “Wait a minute, that looks like Jesus.” I looked again. He was right. I said, “…and he’s carrying a lamb.” Jeff said, “You’re right.”

See it? The picture is dark, so it’s almost impossible to see on a phone, unless you’re in a dark room. Here’s another one:

I took the liberty of drawing a rough outline in Paint, just in case the picture isn’t giving enough detail. The creepy thing is that if you zoom in on the face, you can ReALLy see a face; I’m pretty sure the eyes were glowing.

See what I mean?
Soooo, we stared at it for a while, not sure what to do. The figure kept getting more and more obvious. We started trudging back to the house and it was clear that He was watching us. It wasn’t funny anymore. I mean, when Jesus is standing in your yard, it’s pretty serious business.
I asked Jeff what we should do about it. He didn’t know. More importantly, what was He pointing at?

Should we follow a mathematical equation and determine the exact angle of His outstretched arm and, at the point where it intersects with the plane of the Earth, start digging for something?

Is it a warning? Could there be an abandoned well in the area and Jesus wanted to get our attention to warn us?

I think it is possible that the answer is much more mundane. See, behind the barn, we have a tree down. You can sorta see it here, to the back left:

It was there when we moved in but, by the time we got around to dealing with it, the weeds had grown up and there were probably bugs and snakes and hobbits living in it, so we decided to wait until this Fall, or maybe even Winter, to deal with it. In the meantime, it’s just laying there.

I’m pretty sure that Jesus is gesturing at the tree. I can almost hear Him… “I work and sacrifice to make a nice place for you people to live and this is the thanks I get?! Leaving trees lying all over the ground?! Do you know how long it took me to make that tree?! Get this mess cleaned up!

Side note: Apparently, it’s not just me. Even Jesus sounds like his mother every now and then.

Anyway, I felt kinda bad about not taking care of the fallen tree, once it occurred to me that this might be The Jesus Tree’s message. Still, I don’t want to die of snake poisoning either, so I’m going to hope that he’s pointing to buried treasure. Fingers crossed!