Thursday, September 10, 2009

Daddy/Daugher Rockers and The Secret to the Best Grilled Steak

Um. Hello?

Is it safe for me to to stick my head back out? (smile)

Thanks for the very spirited welcome I received when I returned from our house hunting trip last night. It's always interesting to read the wide variety of opinions and thoughts represented by my diverse and wonderful family of readers.

I'm not going to spend a lot of time on yesterday's comments since I have plenty of cool stuff to write about today but I did want to briefly touch on a couple things.

First, the fact was mentioned that we don't even have the job in Manteo yet.

Yes, that is true that we haven't been officially voted on. However, since the chairman of the church board is the one who actually recommended our realtor to us and who also invited us to stay overnight at his house during our house hunting visit, we get the impression that that he feels like it's a good idea to start that process. And so we did!

Also, someone else wondered why Steve and I haven't been working the past nine months and also wondered if working "regular jobs" wasn't appropriate for a pastor and his wife. That's a great question and I'm glad you brought it up.

I actually had to smile a bit when I first saw that particular question because I mentally went back over the list of some of the jobs Steve and I have worked in past years. They have included (between the two of us) cleaning hotel rooms, cleaning houses, selling shoes, working as a mechanic, being a switchboard operator, and working as a forklift operator. Since several of those jobs were held while we were in the ministry and needing to supplement our income, I guess you could say that we don't find many jobs to be inappropriate for ministers. Of course, we really have to draw the line at drug dealing and bank robbing. (smile)

Shortly after Steve resigned last November, we both signed up at a couple temp agencies in the area; unfortunately, at that particular time, the agencies were getting slammed with twice as many applicants as usual and half as many jobs available.

Steve also put in an application at Lowe's Home Supply store and both of us put in a couple applications at other places. He spent quite a bit of time going to meetings and gathering information about being a substitute school teacher but that field (in this county, at least) is woefully overcrowded. A bad economy coupled with the fact that we were never sure how long we'd be able to work before our move didn't help us out any in the job searching process.

However, since my voice has started recuperating a bit more in the past few months, we have been able to travel a bit more to various churches to sing and preach. That has brought some income in for us, which we've been very grateful for. In the meantime, we continue to live mostly on an equity loan and we also continue to embrace all the joyful challenges of living frugally. (My family calls me the "Queen of Leftovers.")


Alrighty then! Now let's go back to our regularly scheduled programming which will first of all include a couple of "funnies" from our trip:

First funny:

As we were looking through one particular house Tuesday, I happened to glance over at the phone on the wall. Taped up next to the phone was a hand printed index card with these words:

"No, I'm sorry I can't donate this year. My wife won't let me."

We all got a good giggle out of that, including the realtor.

Second funny:

When we were driving to the chairman of the board's house on Tuesday evening, Steve decided that since he had already met his wife briefly before, he would be a helpful husband and fill me in on the few thing that he knew about her. And one of those details just happened to be that, "She used to be a man."

Steve said that sentence so casually and matter-of-factly that I really didn't quite know what to say. I opened my mouth a couple of times to reply but no response I could think of seemed quite appropriate.

After a few seconds had passed Steve continued his explanation, "You know, from the Mann Family that Mann's Harbor was named after?"

Ohhhhh! Mann was her maiden name. The light dawned!

After we looked at a few houses on Tuesday, we took an hour or so just to wander around the waterfront area.

Then there was the daddy/daughter walk down the pier

To the rocking chair area . . .

The daddy/daughter rocking chair area

After that, we decided we could use a little snack so we drove a mile or two to the Front Porch Cafe. As soon as I walked in and saw the interior, I fell in love. Cool, creative, artsy, whimsical, plus it smelled great and played Jack Johnson music. What's not to love?

Well, besides the fact that I hate coffee and they mainly serve coffee. But still, it was a wonderful place!

From there, it was on to the home of our hosts to meet the lady who "used to be a Mann."

This is a picture of Steve's and my sleeping area. Lovely and peaceful.

We had two arrangements of fresh flowers from our host's garden.

One in the bathroom . . .

Another in the bedroom.

And outside our bedroom door, we had this lovely view.

For dinner, they served us grilled steaks and I must say that they were very close to being the best steaks we have ever had.

And because you all are such wonderful and lovely blog folks, I got permission to share the secret recipe with you. It is "beyond words wonderful."

Part of the secret seems to be to always let steaks come to room temperature before grilling so that you don't "shock the meat." Sprinkle the steaks with meat tenderizer and then let them sit out on the counter for a couple of hours in a bath of Worcestershire sauce. (Of course, you could also add whatever spices you like.) Turn them every once in awhile and sprinkle with more tenderizer. And grill.

Absolutely amazing steak!

We got home last yesterday afternoon, pretty well exhausted. Steve had just a short while to catch a cat nap before eating a bite of dinner and heading right back out the door to speak at an area church. (He's doing their Wednesday night teaching for the month of September.)

I went to bed pretty early, slept well, and am now gearing up for our trip to Florida where we will have a service Sunday morning and a service Sunday night. Yikes. My little ol' voice will get quite a workout with two concerts in one day.

Well, that's it for now! I hope you all have a wonderful day and as always, thanks so much for stopping by. I appreciate each one of you!

22 Had Something To Say (Just click here!):

Anonymous said...

Becky, you are a model of grace.

GS in Canada

Karo said...

Welcome back!

Unknown said...

In loving light,
Eva in Belgium

Anonymous said...

Their house looks lovely, nice amenities and great food. Why not move in with them!?

Okay, what were your impressions of house hunting?

You handled your critics with much grace. Thanks for setting a great example because I don't think I would be as kind. I need to work on that.

Connie F-G

lesley said...

I love the pictures! I'll be able to wave to you down the eastern seaboard from Cape Cod :)

Anonymous said...

You are blessed with the gift of grace.

Anonymous said...

You are a classy lady!.....and in agreement with the ladies~~you are a model of grace~~
Sounds like a nice trip....good luck with everything.

MaryH said...

Glad to hear from you again! I am still laughing about the "used to be a Mann" comment - I must say, I would have thought the very same thing. Thank God, Steve explained. Manteo looks wonderful! Your accommodations were so welcoming and comfortable and I must say, I don't eat steak very often, but next time I do, I am going to try that recipe! Makes sense and sounds wonderful. Glad all your travels were safe and here's to praying for safe ones again this weekend. I echo the earlier comment here, you are a model of grace! And, I will add wisdom and compassion. Thanks, Becky

Anonymous said...

Glad you're back! I love the picture of the rocking porch ~ that could've been taken on my grandmother's porch in Raleigh.

I may have to use that index card by the phone idea - except I need it for ME! I told one caller that I talk to my husband before giving $75 donations (that's what they asked for) and they said, "I'm sure he wouldn't mind $50 then?" I said, "I talk to him about those, too." They proceeded to talk me "down" to $25 ~ "he couldn't mind that." I had to hang up - kind of rude to think they would try to talk someone into NOT consulting with their spouse about finances. Hmmm.

L in AK

Unknown said...

So, did you find a house that you liked? Never forget what a can of paint can do for a place! We have learned that lesson :). Praying for a peaceful and safe transistion (and quick & painless). What does Sarah think of the area?

bearie1 said...

Glad you had a good trip. But you didn't say how the house hunting went. Elaine

Sarah said...

Drawing the line at drug dealing and bank robbery is probably a good idea - our class president tried the bank robbery think my sophomore year of undergrad and spent about 2 years in jail for it (although I guess if you tried that one you wouldn't need to think about housing right away).

Your pictures look lovely!

Pam D said...

I do love you, Becky. I read your post yesterday morning and then was busy to the point of not checking back til this a.m. Boy, was I shocked! I came here now to comment on that post, but after reading this one, I realized that no further comment is really needed. Well, other than a couple of pieces of the Word, which never goes stale:

Galatians 6:2 says: Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
And the last verse of that chapter says:
Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. (verse 10)

1 Thessalonians 5:11 says:
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

As bloggers, as commenters, and as friends, those are pretty good rules by which to craft our posts and responses, don't you think?

Now.. love this post and all of the beautiful pictures. And you finally helped me put 2 and 2 together as to why my steaks are sometimes so much better than others. I do sometimes sit them out; other times, hubby grabs them straight out of the fridge. I'm betting that it's when I do the former that they are their tenderest and best. Thank you SO much!

Ann Martin said...

Becky, so glad you had a great trip. I, too, want to know about the house hunting. I can just imagine you, Steve, and Sarah redoing an old house that needs love and attention. You were so loving in your comments and I am sure that is through God's leading. Have a safe trip to Florida and enjoy that son of yours. Will keep you in prayer. Love to all.

Sue G said...

Darn you, Pam D. I came here prepared to tell Becky that she is far more gracious than I because I would never have been so loving to people who felt the need to rip my thoughts, my choices, and my honesty to shreds like they did Becky's. I wanted to tell her that she is an example of what a true Christian is because even though I am a Christian, I would want to demand that those people never leave a comment on my blog again. In fact, if there were a way to block them from the blog, I would. But then YOU, Pam, go and remind me of the scripture that says I need to lift up and encourage now I can't write any of these things to Becky. And I really wanted to. Darn.

Becky, I always knew you loved photography and have always enjoyed your photos. But, girl, the photos of Manteo are amazing. You took things I would hardly even notice, photographed them, and made them viable works of art. (That said, you must consider reproducing these, framing them, and selling them in the local gift shops for locals and visitors to purchase and enjoy. MUST!)

Next time you go house hunting, please look for two homes because I think I want to live there, too! Living amidst that charm and grace is so inviting.

And who knows, maybe a little of it would rub off on me because i obviously need some! :-)

MaryH said...

Sue G. and Pam D. - wasn't there a mention once of a meeting on a porch - there was a mighty comfy looking porch and rocking chairs in that picture - I can see myself occupying one of those - anybody else?

Nancy said...

Wow, if half the world could be like you, the world would be a better place. You, my dear, are blessed with dignity and grace and you took on something that no one should have to endure. I am absolutely proud of you. I have had many "comments" in my time that has made me want to hide and just give up.
You didnt do that.

Margie said...

How did the house hunting go? Where will you be in Florida? Somewhere close to me I hope.

Pam D said...

Why Mary H... you are SO perceptive! Yes, that's our porch.. just perfect! A porch party.. I'm in! (and Sue.. sorry for killing your buzz, but Becky pretty much killed mine when I saw how lovely and gracious she was... so we both have flat, dead buzzes now... )

Tube Girl said...

Had to smile about the "queen of leftovers" comment. My fiance and I have declared this month the month of leftovers in order to save some money and so far he has been amazed what I have been coming up with only using groceries we had stocked up on at some point during the past few months. So maybe I am the Austrian Queen of Leftovers?

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