Friday, July 19, 2013

And Now...Let's Go To Seattle!

My younger brother, Johnny, and I were born in Seattle. My father was in the Army, and my parents were stationed there two different times, with an assignment in Alaska in between. My mother has always dreamed of taking us back to see our birthplace, and she had hoped that we could even find the house we lived in back in the 50's. The beauty of all of this is that she also wanted to take her three grown children and their spouses on an Alaskan Cruise with her, up the Inside Passage...departing from Seattle! She made that dream come true for all of us, in early May. We flew non-stop from Charlotte to Seattle, spent three days exploring this "City of Seven Hills", then boarded the Holland America cruise ship, Westerdam, for an amazing 7 day cruise. This was huge for EZ as it was the first time since his diagnosis three years ago, that he would be flying (and for six hours straight!). We had no idea if he would be able to "sit" for that long, but with some extra pain medication and first class seats that reclined a bit, he did great! We were all so excited about the amazing adventure we were about to go on thanks to Mom. We kids hadn't been together, just the grown ups, since before we all had children, and now grandchildren.


Airplane food isn't all that bad (yeah first class!)

Look at those mountains!
While in Seattle, we chose to rent a house overlooking Lake Washington, with a view of Mt. Ranier, rather than staying in a hotel for the three days. I am soooo glad we made that decision. It was beautiful, serene, and in a great location. We had two rental cars to explore the city with.

Our home for three days with view of the floating bridge


Oldest son David with wife Shannon

Youngest son Johnny with wife JoAnn

Middle child Linda with husband EZ

Look real closely and you can see Mt. Ranier in the distance (from our balcony)

After a long day of travel, time for pizza with Johnny and JoAnn!
Let the good times begin with Mom, David, Shannon and EZ!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Nick is off to Nepal!

I can't believe the time has finally arrived for Nick to head to Nepal. (To learn more about this amazing country, click here and read all about it!) He has been planning this trip for about 9 months now, along with four others from the UNC School of Dentistry, and yesterday, off  they went!

Congested Kathmandu
These paragraphs from a fundraising letter they sent out will help explain what they will be doing in Nepal:

Greetings from the fourth annual UNC School of Dentistry Nepal Project!  We ask for your support with this year’s humanitarian project, designed and executed by students and under the supervision of UNC faculty.  Our goal is to promote oral hygiene education and prevention as well as to provide oral health care to those who otherwise would have no access to it.  Over half of Nepal’s 30 million residents are living below the international poverty line, and the entire country is currently served by only 500 dentists.  An overwhelming majority of these dentists are located within the capital city of Kathmandu, making it impractical and extremely difficult for those living in rural areas to seek treatment.

In July 2013, five UNC School of Dentistry students and a faculty member will travel to Nepal for a month, in partnership with the Nepalese Health and Development Society.  We plan to hold dental camps in the Solukhumbu and Chitwan regions of rural Nepal to provide much needed dental care such as extractions, fillings, cleanings, and sealants.  From the Solukhumbu camp we will continue on foot in the Annapurna Ranges, providing oral hygiene education and supplies to villages along the route. 

This is an amazing opportunity for Nick not only to put into practice what he has learned this first year, but to provide education and care to the Nepali people, halfway around the world! As you feel led, please pray for the, health, compassionate hearts, stamina, skill and lasting impact.  Will post updates as we hear from Nick.

Anne and I will especially be missing this guy!!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

More Projects, Then Ready, Set, Sell!

In our ongoing effort to get our house ready, we realized there were a few more things that would really make a difference in the appearance. The deck was begging for a facelift, so we had it pressure washed, EZ replaced the top and bottom railings (with some help from Nick and Kyle), then we had it stained and sealed. Much improved!!

Next it was time for a new garage door...lighter, quieter and no more sagging (failed to get a pic of the old one!).

We never had pickets on the steps leading to our unfinished basement, so EZ built a new railing and added the pickets, making it a lot safer! Glad we never had one of the grandkids go over that edge!

And finally, EZ got me a small pressure washer so I could go to town on the side walkway, patio furniture and gutters, brickwork, and front porch and walk. It is one DIRTY job, but I love the results!

The sign went up, we had seven showings in three days, and got a great offer and contract from a couple in Texas. We were due to close on May 30th, and rent back from them for three months (until August 30th)...perfect! THEN...they terminated the contract on the last day of due diligence. Agh! So we re-grouped, made it active again, and in the first weekend we had two couples look at it and got another offer from a couple moving down from New York. Our due diligence has passed, and we are totally "a go" to close on August 8th and move to our new home. We are excited about the future, and so grateful things seem to be working out. More on the new house to come!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Next...the Mudroom!

One of many things I have loved about our house is the extra large laundry/mudroom/office and 1/2 bath. But for nine years we have looked at rose and cream colored torn vinyl, and it was time to update with some ceramic tile...Carolina clay color. As with the roof, tearing out the old flooring created a big mess, and at one point there was actually a toilet on our deck! At the end of it all we wondered why on earth we hadn't done it sooner. Isn't that always the case? Have a great weekend everyone!

New tile
Our appliances taking up our eat-in kitchen area
Pulling up the old

 EZ got in to the action too
Getting there

Toilet on the deck anyone?

A muddy mess...
The floor is done!

Newly painted cabinet doors that EZ added to cover my "stuff"