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- Sisters, Sisters....Last Updated: 6/29/2011
There were never such devoted sisters....
My sister just spent 3 weeks with me. She hasn’t done that since….well, not ever. We live 1000 miles apart and have since 1990 when we moved from Fla to Ohio for my husband’s job. She’s only come to see me a handful of times due to the obligations of raising a family. I’ve only been home once or twice a year myself for the same reasons. We haven’t spent extended time together ever, that I can remember since we were kids. Life is so busy with the day-to-day when you live in the same town, and it’s so hard to make the time/opportunity when you live in different places.
My daughter was about to be married and I've been so busy trying to finish up my midwifery school, my clients and homeschooling my kids along with everything that entails so I asked my mom to come spend some time and help me. She couldn't so my sister decided to. I tried to tell her it was okay, I really didn't need help, but she came anyway. I’m so glad she did. The ability to spend uninterrupted, well, okay, interrupted time together was such an incredible gift. We had Lots of laughter and commiserating together about all things family. We share an aging parent and the struggles and difficulties that entails are hard to explain unless you’re in it. So yes, there were tears too. One thing is I don’t understand how she remembers so much more than I do about our childhood and some things she remembers just aren't TRUE! Haha!
I couldn't have made it mentally in one piece this month (which of course is debated by my children day-by-day) without her help. Some of the things we did: Lowes…over & over & over……and we bought plants and flowers for my front and back yard….and we bought bags & bags of mulch too….and supplies for all the things she would fix…more about that later….
We spent hours & hours over several days weeding and pruning and planting and mulching. So when I look at my flowers, in addition to enjoying their beauty and thinking about the greatness of God in creation, I remember her help and it makes me smile.
A few weeks before this my computer crashed. I hadn’t backed it up in a way that I could access the information. Do NOT count on HP's auto-back-up program! I finally figured out everything I had lost and began the task of rebuilding. It took days & days just to assess what was missing. Fortunately, I had hard copies of most of it. I tried to figure out how to scan it in and create a word doc, but after a couple of days trying, I just gave up. Julie figured it out in NO TIME and saved me HOURS & HOURS of work rebuilding my lost files. We had to unhook one printer and hook up the printer that has the scanner and install software and blah-blah-blah... but it was done and is back to where it was "before the crash". I was so happy I did the happy-dance.
Sorry no pictures for that one.
Last year when she came, we bought a coffee table at Ikea that I really wanted, but I wanted it DIFFERENT…so she designed the tile top and put it together, glue grout & all. I LOVE it…but I was supposed to put the wood edges on. Wasn’t quite sure how, and even though I wanted to, I just never did. So I asked her to finish it, and she did. It wasn’t really easy either, I watched her do it. It took many steps and stinky glue and hauling it outside and inside, a couple times due to rain. Isn’t it beautiful?
I have a wrought-iron table and chairs set on my patio. It was really rusted and dingy looking and she spray painted it for me. There is also a wooden chair that was so rickety that I was going to haul it to the trash, but she said….all ya gotta do is….a little glue & paint…and so she did….twice. She painted it blue and then we looked at it against my house and both said…uhhhh no…..needs to be green….and she painted it the second time. Now it looks SO MUCH better AND you can actually SIT in it now too! I would've just trashed it without her and now I just love it!
Next…back inside….my big boys’ bedroom was all manner of nasty…clothes covering the floor, refusal to clean it up, stinky…(sorry boys, if you’re reading, but it’s true) and I’d been after them for a YEAR to clean it up. On their behalf, there really wasn’t much room in there and the way it was arranged made it all the MORE difficult. You couldn’t get to one of the dressers, nor the closet very easily. However, they refused to re-arrange it. Said the LIKED it that way. Well, I didn’t. You know how it is when you just MUST have a haircut NOW? You just have to? You call around and even don’t use your regular person cause TODAY is the DAY it MUST be done? Well, yeah, that is what happened. I was anticipating my mother and her husband coming, and we figured out that they really couldn’t use the room upstairs due to the stairs and I realized I needed somewhere to put them. The Stink-Pit! So I grabbed up my smaller children, got tubs and we went at it. I piled all the STUFF in the tubs, and I shall NOT say how many it took. My sister hid-out for this part…she has teenagers….she KNEW…. I re-arranged the furniture and took one of the dressers out and put those clothes on shelves in the closet. They hadn’t used the dresser anyway, they used the FLOOR! That made it easier to access both the OTHER dresser AND the closet. And funny thing happened….the stink dissipated. I did still have a problem, the beds. They’ve seen better days. I have this THING about moving furniture and changing rooms from time to time. The bolts were all stripped and the one bed was just laying on the trundle that was underneath it. I couldn’t put an old person with issues on that bed. That’s where my sister came to the rescue. She got my son-in-law to get new bolts and bring his drill/screwdriver thingy and she put those babies back together. Sturdy as a mule horse now! The boys, you ask? How’d they take it? Welllllll…..let’s just say…. Not great. As my sister says, "It was ugly all day!” but afterward she overheard one say…”hey, so-and-so, our room doesn’t STINK anymore…this ain’t so bad” and the next night he said to me, "HEY MOOOOOOMMMMMM, our room is nice now, why didn’t you do this a LONG time ago???!!!??” When I entered his room to murder him, I found him rolling on his now-fixed bed laughing hysterically.
Then the mending…..there was this braided rug in my family room that was coming undone and we were afraid my mother’s husband would trip on it AGAIN….like he did LAST year….so, and I kid-you-not, she got out HER mending supplies….she brought her sewing machine, her mending kit, and LOADS of tools….and she sewed the rug back up….good as new.
I was sitting down to finish this blanket I had set aside for my granddaughter for MONTHS. As I was getting ready, Julie decided I could do it better if I used HER tools, and lo-and-behold, she was SO right! That saved my thumb and quite a bit of time as well. She helped Tara make a pillowcase dress for Bella too. Since Calli’s quilt, that Julie made originally, had some seams come apart during laundering…out with the trusty mending supplies and good as new again!
In the meantime….the wedding preparation was ongoing….we had meetings and purchases and decisions about things. It was an outside wedding and the lady said lots of people use arbors. Well, I HAD an arbor, but it was very dirty and a bit rickety itself. Julie pulled it down, we got a magic eraser and she went to town. Then she went shopping and got some tulle and netting and she was in charge of transporting it (with my son-in-law doing the physical part) setting it up and getting it dressed. In the set-up, it was so windy it fell over. So extra supplies from the store, and reinforced and it stood through the wedding beautifully. I didn’t EVEN have to think about it, knowing she was handling it.
Also in the meantime, Leslie had 2 car accidents. The first one not too bad, a semi dropped its drive train in front of her and she didn’t have time to go around it, so she went over it….literally….in the air over it. But it blew out a tire. After that was fixed, she took it to the mechanic to have it checked and it needed brakes. Because she had her fiance’s graduation ceremony, she borrowed her brother’s car to go to that. On the way home, traffic stopped in front of her and she didn’t. When I got the call, Julie was there holding me up in prayer. I’m sure that is why I held it together so well. My husband wasn’t answering the phone, it took me him and then 3 kids to get someone to answer. She wound up fine. Anyway, the car got towed to an impound lot. Julie took us over to try to get into it and then we used her AAA (because I don’t have AAA GOLD)…another long story….to get the car towed to our mechanic. Car is probably totaled, not sure quite yet. Since we were dealing with all these car issues, I had my mother’s car too, another long story…how is it I have so many LONG stories? Julie did lots of chauffeur trips: kids to work, and kids to the ballfield.
I sat down to groom one of the dogs, complaining about the next one that is a MANIAC whenever she even SEES a brush. She got out another brush and went at it, and wouldn’t you know? Roxie hardly even fought her. No Fair!
I was having a discussion (okay a fight) with my husband about the lawnmower. Apparently my dear-son believes it’s broken. My dear-husband said we just BOUGHT it last YEAR it CANNOT BE broken yet. My dear-son said it’s a piece of TRASH.
I wonder if that’s because he doesn’t pick anything up before he mows? I have already replaced the blade on a less-than-one-year-old mower.
Son says it won’t run. Husband says FINE….JUST GO BUY ANOTHER ONE! Julie says….let me look at it. Son says, yeah, what are YOU gonna do? She says, well, I DID work in lawn & garden at Home Depot for years and this WAS my job. She goes out there and pulls the air filter, which was completely blocked, she knocks it out and the wha-laa…it works. She says, "Oh! that boy is gonna HATE me!”
There was this last LEETLE thing. After our meeting with the wedding place, we came home and Julie asked, "How’d it go?” I say, "well, there WAS just this one LEETLE thing” she spit out her drink laughing, saying OH NO, OhhhhHHHH NO…what? Just tell me? I said, "well..................... theladycantactuallyBEthereduringtheactualceremonysowejustneedyoutobetheweddingplannerperson to tell people when to go, that’s ALL…you don’t MIND do you?” We ran her BUTT off, pardon my language, but we really did. She did it with style & grace & no complaining & made it look easy to boot. I didn't have a care in the world throughout the whole ceremony.
She also helped me color my hair when I couldn't get my regular girl to do it. That way I didn't have to have a silver zipper for the wedding day, which would've been quite a disaster!!
So I had this idea during all the preparation that I should change my kitchen just a LEETLE and have a tile backsplash because my cabinets are sinking and showing my old, old wallpaper. To get it off, I’d have to take off the counter, and since I’m taking it off, I might as well replace it, and of course, I’ll need a new sink/faucet. And of COURSE I don’t want just REGULAR tile, I want custom-designed-by-Julie tile… and since she’s HERE, she might as well bring her husband to fix my son’s car, right? Oh Juuuulllliiieeee… all ya gotta do is……
Have I said, thank-you and I LOVE YOU!!?!!?!
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