SHESMITH1   52,685
50,000-59,999 SparkPoints
SHESMITH1's Recent Blog Entries

Spring blooms

Friday, May 16, 2014

I love gardening! My primary home (ie, where I spend most of time) is a small condo with no yard to call my own, but plenty of sunshine. Last week, my precious Sophie (2 1/2 year old granddaughter) and I potted a couple of tomatoes and some herbs. She is my BEST helper! I used some of the herbs in our Mother's Day lunch. She was very proud of this fact!

Sophie has taken full ownership of our work. While I've been in our secondary home (where I usually just spend a couple of days a week ) this week, she has gone over and watered "our" plants - with her mom's help.

Coming "home" was glorious. Although our daffodils, bluebells and snowdrops are long spent, I found many of our shrubs and spring flowering plants in bloom.

I planted this columbine the year we moved into our house as a memorial and prayerful reminder for the Columbine school victims and their loved ones. That horror occurred the day we found the house. I was driving my son from his school to his orthodontist and - en route - passed the house for sale that would become our home. When we got home from his appointment, we were shocked and grievous at the news when we turned on the television.

The peonies are precious to me because they are transplants from my mother's (which were transplants from her mother's) that she and my daddy planted as a surprise for Jeff and me while we were at work one day.

The bleeding heart is just about spent, but a few hale and "hearty" blossoms are still clinging.

The rhododendruns and roses are truly beautiful this time of year.

The azaleas come and go, depending on the type.

The japanese laceleaf maple is another gift from my mother.

I have tried to grow vegetables at home many times, but have too much shade. I hope Sophie's and my attempt in pots at the condo will be successful. My desire is to instill in her (and her little sister, Lola, when she is a little older) a love for gardening and an appreciation for God's provisions.

Thanks for strolling through my gardens!

Have a great weekend~

I have tried a bizillion ways to rotate these pictures to no avail. You'll just have to turn your computers upside down, or stand on your heads! I'm sorry!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CLAIREINPARIS 8/27/2014 5:28AM

    How could I miss this blog? It is the sweetest ever! And the peonies story was so moving... Thank you very much for sharing these stories and pictures with us! Your granddaughter is just adorable!

Report Inappropriate Comment
MICHELELYNN777 5/16/2014 4:03PM

    I LOVED this blog! As you know, I also love gardening and appreciate all the beauty God has graced you with in your lovely plants/flowers. I think it is precious that Sophie helped you plant a garden and that she is owning it! Sounds like the gardening bug has been caught and she will always have memories of spending that time with you :) Thanks for sharing!
P.S. Sophie is ADORABLE!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/16/2014 4:03:28 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
GOLFGMA 5/16/2014 2:18PM

    The flowers are beautiful and you have so many! Of course, the most beautiful thing in the blog is that rosy cheeked Sophie. She grows more so each time I see her in pictures. I understand the frustration with the pictures. My recent blog was to have two in it and the computer at the hotel was so slow I finally gave up.
Hope you made it through all the storms on Thursday. We got lots of heavy rain but luckily no damaging wind or flooding. emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
SWDESERTLOVER 5/16/2014 1:14PM

    Love the pictures - even upside down! emoticon
Your flowers are beautiful and Sophie is just precious. I really need to get out and work in my flower beds. Enjoy your weekend!
emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment

It Wasn't Meant to Be

Monday, April 28, 2014

In April of 2013, my dear husband gave me a weekend in NYC for my birthday. We used to go up at least once a year, but had not been in 4 years due to various reasons. Needless to say, I was very excited! However, the Saturday before the weekend we had booked, my precious father died. We had insurance on the Broadway tickets and were reimbursed. We sent a copy of Daddy's obituary to the airline and were given a year to use those tickets.

The year was about to escape us, but we managed to sneak in under the wire with a planned trip this past weekend. We were to leave for the airport at 630 Friday morning. At 130AM, my husband awoke terribly sick (he had come home from work early on Thursday feeling feverish and generally "yucky" - something he never does.) He was sick (GI) all night. We evaluated our options throughout the night. Finally at 6AM, he said, "I don't think I can make it."

I called and cancelled our flight and hotel reservations. Because he wasn't hospitalized with proof of illness, we suffered full penalty on our prepaid reservations. A major OUCH!!!

There are no 24 hr drugstores or grocery stores near 'The Other Place' we live, unlike our hometown with 3-24 hr stores on every corner. I was at the drug store when it opened at 9AM, purchasing OTC solutions and GatorAde. By evening, he was fine.

We took in a movie on Friday evening, went for a 3 mile hike in a nearby state park on Saturday, went to church and had the kids over for lunch on Sunday, followed by an hour walk and another movie that evening.

If I put on my rose-tinted, Pollyanna glasses and momentarily forget the mucho-bucks we were penalized for cancelling our plans, I can honestly say we had a great weekend.

We WILL get back to NYC soon. I do love that town!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KSCHRAUT 5/3/2014 8:04PM

    Your attitude about this is really inspiring. I have a hard time with that when things don't go the way they are supposed to. I do, eventually, come to terms with how things play out, but it takes me awhile. I hope you do make it to NYC, soon!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SWDESERTLOVER 4/30/2014 11:47AM

    I am so sorry you had to cancel your plans, but how wonderful that you were still able to enjoy your weekend. Hopefully you will make it back to NYC in the near future. Hope you're having a good week now.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MICHELELYNN777 4/30/2014 7:14AM

    I am so disappointed for you as I know how much you were looking forward to your trip to NY. I'm glad Jeff is feeling better which is really what matters. I am so blessed by your attitude about it~a definite reminder to me that I'm not in control and things happen for a reason even when I don't understand that reason. Glad you were able to have a great weekend despite the change of plans. I hope you will get to NYC very soon :)

Report Inappropriate Comment

    I'm so sorry your plans were cancelled again - but you're health (and that of your DH) really is more important than all the $$ in the world.

Maybe next time....

Report Inappropriate Comment
SHOAPIE 4/29/2014 2:17PM


Report Inappropriate Comment
BILL60 4/29/2014 7:59AM

    At least you had a super time. The best of luck on your next attempt at the Big Apple.

Report Inappropriate Comment
ALIHIKES 4/28/2014 9:46PM

    Wow that does seem like the fickle finger of fate intervened TWICE. Your attitude is great, sounds like you had a great weekend, and you will make it to NYC when the time is right!

Report Inappropriate Comment
CLAIREINPARIS 4/28/2014 9:44PM

    I am so sorry you couldn't make it to NYC, twice! And sorry your husband was sick too. But very glad he is better, and that you had a good weekend at the end. Your positive attitude is an inspiration!

Report Inappropriate Comment
GOLFGMA 4/28/2014 9:19PM

    Glad Jeff is feeling better, but, so sorry you missed your trip. I have an idea he will get you there soon. Maybe you should just drive instead of flying. Your weekend sounded like fun and I would love having one like it! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
KATHY98665 4/28/2014 8:07PM

    Great attitude! So sorry about your dad, and then the disappointment of missing your trip ( again! emoticon )

Putting a positive spin on things can really make a difference. Hope you make it to NYC soon. I have never been, but hope to some day....

Report Inappropriate Comment

Do Calories Count when it's your granddaughter's birthday?

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Hard to believe that my youngest granddaughter, Lola, has turned one!

Elmo birthday cupcakes


"My mommy makes the best cake!"

Oooo, Lo-la!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MICHELELYNN777 4/30/2014 7:18AM

    Oh, she is getting so big! What a sweet, precious little girl she is and one after my own heart digging into that cupcake~lol! The Elmo cupcakes are adorable, too. I definitely think you get pass on those calories :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
SWDESERTLOVER 4/25/2014 7:48AM

    Lola is precious! Oh, and the cupcakes look good also. So, NO, the calories don't count on a birthday. LOL


Report Inappropriate Comment
MNCYCLIST 4/25/2014 7:27AM

    Answer to the question: NO!

Report Inappropriate Comment
GOLFGMA 4/25/2014 7:13AM

    Beautiful, Adorable, Lovable! Just like you! Happy Birthday to Lola. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
ALIHIKES 4/25/2014 12:06AM

    How cute! Love the cupcakes, and granddaughter is ADORABLE! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
ARNETTELEE 4/24/2014 8:32PM

  Yummy! What a sweetie! Happy birthday!

Comment edited on: 4/24/2014 8:33:04 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment

February in Review (Tweak Time!)

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Having SMART goals is essential to success. However, every nurse knows from doing nursing care plans that an equally important step not supported in that acronym is: evaluation. How can we determine that we are on the right track with our goals if we do not continuously evaluate the plan and modify it as needed?

Today I have looked back at February, measuring the outcomes of the resolutions I set for the year.

Fitness goals
100 pushups 6 days a week: met 71 % of the time, with an additional 25% of days with 50 pushups.

Walk 45 mins 3 days/wk: met 58% of the time, with an additional 2 days (16%) with walks of less than 45 min duration.

Swim or cycle 30 mins 3 days/wk: met 50% of the time.

Nutrition goals
4 salads/wk: met 25% of the time, with additional 5 meals of fruit

No butter on bread: met 100% of the time

Increase in dietary calcium: 9 occasions of added calcium

Maintain a calorie deficit between calories in/calories out: met 100% of the time

What does this tell me and what kind of tweaking do I need to do?

Cardio workouts have been lacking. TWEAK: Rather than aiming to do cardio 6 days a week, alternating wogging (walk/jogging) with swimming and cycling, I'm going to set a more realistic goal of doing some form of aerobic exercise 4 days a week. I travel 2 days a week. At this point, working in some cardio on those days has proved unsuccessful. I am fatigued by the driving. Perhaps as the days grow longer and warmer I will get a wog in on one or both of those days. For now, I'll hold those days for strength-training only.

The strength workouts were pretty consistent. TWEAK: I found a core workout online that I'm going to swap for the pushups and crunches I've been doing. It includes some pushups, but offers some variations to the crunches I was doing. I will maintain the goal of strength training 6 days/wk.

As far as nutritional goals, I obviously fell way short on the number of salads I had aimed to eat, as well as the overall increase in calcium-rich foods. TWEAK: Plan meals more carefully and stock kitchen accordingly. Rather than aim for salad 4 times/wk, I'm going to aim for a minimum of 5 freggies/day - these may take the form of a salad or not.

I'll continue to leave the butter off my bread. I'll also continue to try to maintain a calorie deficit.

I've already missed 4 days this month :( TWEAK: Time to get started!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GOLFGMA 3/6/2014 7:22AM

    Looks like very good goals. Strength training 6 days a week seems hard. WE are told to skip days of strength training and do every other day to allow the muscles to rest. Your nutrition goals are great and cardio 6 days a week is awesome. Love that you have specific goals and I know you're doing great and look wonderful! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment

A Wonderful Weekend

Monday, February 24, 2014

We had such a beautiful weekend in piedmont NC. All of the snow of last weekend was melted under temps in the 60's.

My son and I cashed in our Christmas stocking goodies by going to the UNC-Chapel Hill (our alma mater) vs WakeForestU (my husband's alma mater) basketball game. We had a great time, especially since our beloved Tarheels won! (Sorry, DH!) After the game, Jacob and I walked around campus. It has changed alot, and yet not at all, since I was there 500 years ago. We walked under a perfectly clear Carolina blue sky (If God's not a Tarheel, why did He make the sky Carolina blue?!?!?).

The UNC bell tower

Jacob showing me some of the architectural details in one of the new buildings

An older section of campus

Sunday found my husband and me entertaining the granddaughters in the park across the street from our condo, lovingly referred to as TOP (The Other Place) - our "home away from home." It was another beautiful day, made all the more so by family activity.

Lola enjoying the swings

Sophie enjoying the swings

Jeff "riding double" with Sophie

What a difference a week makes! I hope you all had a great weekend as well~

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GOLFGMA 2/25/2014 7:49AM

    It WAS a beautiful weekend (weather wise) and I can see you especially enjoyed it. Can't believe how Lola has grown! Jeff with Sophie on the "horsey" is so cute.
I noticed the "heels" came up a notch in standings this week. Must have been because you and Jacob were cheering them on! Love blogs like this that put me in "happy" mood. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Last Page