Saturday Night Serenade–Romantic September

It’s a rough weekend if you live in the Carolinas.  And it looks like Florence is going to push miles inland, impacting a huge swath of the east with tons of rain.  Take care, y’all, and pay attention to the what the authorities tell you.

The rest of us are looking on with our thoughts and prayers on this September weekend.  September always feels like fall to me, although fall doesn’t officially start until next week.

But I always picture leaves in brilliant colors, mugs of spiced cider, and people walking around in jackets.  That’s the way it was where I grew up in Tennessee.

Here in south Florida, the only fall color we get is in October, when the Methodist church puts a pumpkin patch on their front lawn.

I know everybody talks about special fall coffees, but I’m not a fan myself.  Mr. R wondered aloud this week if Pumpkin Spice was one of the Spice Girls.  I said yes, the round orange one.

Tonight, I’m feeling the romance of September, and I thought this song by the Corrs was fitting.

I hope wherever you are, you’re safe, dry, and surrounded by those you love.  Be sure to give them a hug.

And if you’re of a mind to, consider donating to hurricane relief.  It’s going to be a long haul for a lot of people.

Happy Saturday night!

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Saturday Night Serenade–Fall Blues

Feeling the blues this week, and in the best way.  Summer’s gone, and it’s finally fall.  I’m done with summer songs for now.  Autumn songs fit my mood better.  And I’m ready to be done with Huricane Season, can I get an amen?  We still have a bit to go with that, though.

I love this song from Tracy Chapman, and this great version adds a little Clapton to the mix.  Nothing at all wrong with the blues.  And it feels like a song for cooler weather.

Is it cooler where you are?  Are autumn leaves stirring?  Tell me they are, I want to enjoy fall vicariously.  It’s still hot and muggy here.

So pull on a sweater and hug those you love.  Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Ode to Irma

Confession…
I’m writing this post on Thursday.  On Saturday, we’re supposed to be under tropical storm conditions, then Sunday (as of now), we’re supposed to have a Cat 4 hurricane pass right over our heads here in north central Palm Beach County.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, this isn’t our first rodeo.  Coastal areas are going to be under encouraged, if not mandatory, evacuations.  We’re about 15 miles away from the coast, so we’re just going to batten the hatches and hunker down.

Roads, and I mean I-95 and the Florida Turnpike, are crowded with folks seeking higher ground.  But the storm is supposed to ride up the entire peninsula, so unless you’re planning on heading to Omaha (which we considered–our son and his wife live there), you might as well stay put.

I should be nervous.  I’m certainly taking the situation seriously.  We’re securing valuables, packing up some changes of clothes in case we need dry things, storing water, digging out the battery-operated and solar lights, etc.  It’s pretty much a given that we’ll lose power and wi-fi.  We have a well, so we’ll lose water until the electricity is restored.

But I’m feeling cheeky.  So tonight, we’re Riding the Storm Out.  And, as a two-fer, we’re going to Rock You Like a Hurricane.  We’ll keep you posted, and we’d appreciate your prayers, if you’re so inclined.

Hug those you love–I know I will.  Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Texas On My Mind

Texas has been on my mind all week.  The Cat 4 storm was unimaginable to me.

I’ve lived in south Florida for over 25 years, and I’ve been through a few hurricanes.  A couple of them left us without power for 2 weeks at a time.  But those were Cat 1 or 2.

And I thought the storm was the worst of it until they received over 50 inches of rain.  50 inches.  It boggles the mind.

Folks who thought they’d dodged a bullet found themselves under water later on, as floodgates were opened to prevent the levees from breaking.  I don’t think I’ll ever forget the images of boat traffic jams in the streets, ferrying survivors from their drowned homes to someplace dry.  Or the men, women, and children plucked up in baskets by Coast Guard helicopters.

The stories of ordinary people who used what they had to help others touch my heart.  There was the owner of a furniture store who opened the shop to give folks someplace dry to go and rest.  That stands out to me.

Once the water goes down, it’s going to take a herculean effort to get things cleaned up.  Families will be displaced for months, if not years.  And many have lost everything.

If you’re of a mind to help, the Red Cross seems the way to go.  I realize there’s been some buzz about the percentage of money that actually goes to victims.  But I know that when disaster strikes, those folks with the red cross on their vests are the first ones who show up with food, blankets, a place to stay, and plenty of other things.

I hope you’re warm and dry tonight, surrounded by the ones you love.  Be sure to give them a hug.  Happy Saturday night!

P.S.  There’s another storm out in the Atlantic, slated to be Cat 4 Hurricane Irma by this time next week, and possibly headed our way.  Hopefully, it’ll just blow itself out before then.  ❤

Adventures In Home Reno–Episode 1: The Accidental Project

Not long ago, I mentioned that Mr. R. and I are embarking on a brand new adventure, home renovation on our 1986 quasi-Mediterranean house.  We bought it as a foreclosure five and a half years ago and have been blessed to see it rise in value.  Recently, we refinanced with plans to use the money to do serious updates on some sad, mid-eighties builder-grade fixtures, namely, the kitchen and both bathrooms.  We’re also replacing the cheap carpet we put in when we first moved in, opting for wood flooring in the living areas of the house.

We had not planned on replacing the carpet in the bedrooms.  Until…

Remember Hurricane Matthew?  Here in south Florida, we seemed to be in the very cross-hairs of the storm so, like all our neighbors, we launched into storm-prep mode.  We put up shutters, stocked up on non-perishables and drinking water, and made sure we had batteries for the flashlights.

Where we live, we have our own well rather than city water.  The well pump runs on electricity, which the television weather people all assured us would go out in the storm.  Having been through previous hurricanes and gone without electricity for two weeks at a time, we took this warning seriously.

And so it was that we decided to fill the bathtubs, saving water for flushing toilets for the duration of any power outage we might experience.  Mr. R. was in charge of that part of the operation, first filling ‘his’ tub in the second bathroom.  Once that was finished, he started the water in ‘my’ tub, the master bath.  He started the water.

Sometime later, I entered the bedroom and felt a splash as I walked in.  The bathroom is on the opposite side of the room from the door–the overflowing tub had completely flooded the bedroom.

We spent the next several hours using the steam cleaner to suck up as much water as we could.  When the storm had passed, and the power never even so much as blinked, we trotted out to our good friends at Lowe’s and picked up a dehumidifier, which sucked up a lot more water.

But with the padding completely soaked, we’re opting to replace the whole shebang to avoid mold and mildew issues.

Take a trip with us to Lowe’s as we shop for carpet.

As far as reno proper, we met with Bob the Bathroom Guy and Ray the Kitchen Guy last week and signed contracts.  We’re slated to start right after the New Year.  But before that, we’ll have new carpet in the bedroom.  Yay!

Stay tuned…

Hurricane Matthew Update

20161007_141932Many thanks to everyone for all your kind thoughts and prayers for those of us in the path of Hurricane Matthew over the last couple of days.  We fared exceptionally well.  Due to a tiny shift to the east, we experienced precious little in the way of effects.  We had no damage, we never even lost power.

Having spent yesterday at home, finalizing our ‘battened down’ status and preparing for the storm that didn’t come, today we decided to venture out.  There were some power outages in the area and we did find places where branches and palm fronds were blown about.  The first place we attempted to go for lunch was closed, but we found a Chili’s that was open.  Afterward, we took a drive by the beach and found remarkably little in the way of storm effects.  Beyond the breakers, the water was calm.  We didn’t see anything in the way of erosion.

Palm Beach County, at least our little portion in the north, managed to dodge the bullet.  Fingers are crossed when it comes to the projected path, which seems to loop around to possibly hit us again.  So who knows?  But for now, we count ourselves very fortunate.

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Rock You Like A Hurricane

Image result for hurricane matthew wptv

Well, gang, it’s starting to look a little scary.  For the longest time, hurricane forecast tracks have taken this storm over the eastern Bahamas.  But the latest predictions have it coming uncomfortably close to us.  In all honesty, it’s been a while since we’ve been impacted so it’s probably our turn.

Come Wednesday night and Thursday, we could all be hunkered down waiting for the whole thing to blow over, no pun intended.  Think of us, along with Vic and Vile & Arianna.  We’ll keep you posted.

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