Friday, April 15, 2011

A Big(ish) Outing

Last October for Pastor’s Appreciation Day, our church gave Steve and me a gift certificate to Owens, a local restaurant. Sadly though, just when we got ready to put the certificate to use, the restaurant closed for the winter and so we had to cool our heels (along with our taste buds) for five months--all the while continuing to hear rave reviews about the place from various local folks.

Well last Friday night, our Big Moment finally arrived and Steve and I were more than ready to go out and do it up big; in fact, we were ready to par-TAY! (Or at least go forth to eat a fine meal in a generally enthusiastic and energetic fashion.)

And oh, what a meal!

May I just say that if you ever come to the Outer Banks on vacation, you must stop by Owens Restaurant for a meal; it is a drop dead gorgeous restaurant (owned by the same family for 65 years) and the food is amazing. I will warn you, though, that it’s a bit spendy; we probably won’t be going there a whole lot unless we’re accompanied by a gift certificate or unless it’s for a special occasion--like possibly our 85th wedding anniversary.

(Or actually, come to think of it, the portions are plenty big enough to split if you and your Officially Accompanying Person are not big eaters.)


But anyway, here we are, getting ready to delightedly delve (not to mention dive) into our delectable desserts. Steve had coconut pie on a chocolate base and I had pecan pie, warmed, with a scoop of ice cream. (And please do your best to not be jealous of our Unique Hand Holding Technique. When you've been married 29 years, you find out there is more than one correct way to hold a hand!)

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May I just say that we were not, repeat not, counting calories on this particular evening. Life is too short to count calories all the time, and one of those decidedly non-counting times is most definitely when one is dining at Owens.

And even though the meal was expensive, my thrift-lovin’ soul was happy that the leftover filet mignon we took home with us was more than enough to feed all three of us for dinner the following night. I added baked potatoes, a veggie, and some rolls and we got to eat expensive food two nights in a row. How fun is that?

A Few Comments

Kim said, “What beautiful pictures. I'm sure you've told us...but can you tell me again..what kind of camera you have?”

Thanks for the compliment, Kim! I do love taking pictures!

I have two cameras:

  • A “purse camera” which goes with me everywhere. It’s a Canon Power Shot A620 that I’ve had about three or four years; I feel like it’s my best friend. (Well, apart from Steve that is, who is my absolute, very best friend.)
  • I also have a Nikon D5000 which is my “it makes me feel like I’m a real photographer even though I’m not” camera. I’ve only had it a couple months so I’m still finding my way around it but I absolutely love it and am being constantly inspired by all the potential it offers.

My H said, “Is Sarah feeling better now? She was under the weather a few days ago.”

Mary, thanks for your concern about Sarah. Obviously whenever Sarah gets a fever of any variety, we tend to worry a tad because unexplained fevers were one of her original cancer systems. So whenever she does run a temp I say, “Do you have a cough? Runny nose? Sore throat? You do? Oh good!”

I realize it’s a bit odd to do happy dances when one’s daughter has a sore throat but we cancer moms are funny like that.

Anyway, this last fever was (thankfully) accompanied by all the “regular symptoms” so she just stayed home a couple days from school, bounced right back and is currently feeling great!

Anonymous said, “What you had was EXACTLY like the sleep study I just had and waiting for results. What were the results of yours?”

It’s been so long since I had that study that I really don’t remember exactly what the final report was; obviously it wasn’t anything too alarming because no one told me to change anything or do anything different. Good luck on getting your results! There’s nothing quite like going through a sleep study, is there?

Debbie asked, “Beautiful pictures Becky. Out of curiosity, did you find anything at the consignment shop?”

Debbie, actually I did find a treasure. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’ve been on the lookout for summer shoes with toes in them (due to my recent traumatic toenail removal) and I snagged a pair of gold/tannish, leather casual shoes that had some hoity-toity designer’s name in them. (Although hoity toity-ness doesn’t matter in the least to me.)

I looked them up online when I got home and found that they sell new for about $60-80. I got them for $20, which is still a little expensive to me, but hey, I’m a desperate woman! And sometimes a desperate woman just has to shell out $20 for shoes!

But any rate, I just love the whole treasure-hunting vibe of thrift stores and consignment stores because you honestly never know what will be around each corner. The shopping is so much more interesting than at a mall.

And all the thrift store lovers said? Amen!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

From A Slightly Frazzled Woman . . .

Have you ever worried about hurting the feelings of the place you live?

Naw, me neither.

However, just to make absolutely sure that my Outer Banks home knows how much I appreciate its beauty and just to reassure it that I‘m not comparing it unfavorably to the rolling hills I saw on my recent road trip, here are a few shots I took as I was leaving town last week.

I think the Outer Banks would hold its own pretty well in any Scenery Beauty Contest, don’t you?

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My trip on Monday to my oncologist and plastic surgeon went fine; I don’t have to return to either doctor for about six months so that made me quite happy.

What didn’t make me quite as happy was being told by my oncologist that I’m still supposed to do a breast exam every month, paying careful attention to the skin near the scars. He said that there is fatty tissue under those scars and fatty tissue is what grew the cancer in the first place. It’s not a real common occurrence, but he said there have been some women who were diagnosed with cancer again—after a double mastectomy!

I will do what he said as far as the exams go, but I refuse to let my brain think too much about the reason behind what I’m doing. The last thing I need in my life is to be thinking about getting breast cancer again!

I was gone about nine hours on Monday and on Tuesday I spent most of the day in bed with an awful, horrible, painful, dreadful sore throat that started on Sunday morning and just kept getting worse and worse. I couldn’t talk and had no energy to even sneeze. (Which of course, since it's allergy season, I was wont to do on a fairly frequent basis.)

Today I dragged my little ol’ self out of bed and hit the day running since I’d already lost one day to doctors and another day to overall throat-based malaise. I am feeling a bit better today which is a good thing because in the next four hours I have to make dinner (leftover pasta salad with some meat thrown in), attend a staff meeting, attend our Wednesday night service and then sit in on a script re-write for our upcoming Easter drama.

I’m squeezing in the writing of this post in the midst of dinner prep, so if you see any glaring mistakes (or worse yet, you see a smear of butter on the edge of your screen) you’ll know why.

There are a few questions to answer that have come in; I’ll have to get to those in the next post.

Happy Spring! (cough, cough, sniffle, sniffle)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Country Church. Consignment Store. Bliss.

A big part of the joy of last week’s road trip was getting to make the drive home at a leisurely pace, enjoying rain-freshened breezes, sapphire skies and spring festooned hills all along the way.

As much as I love living in our beautiful coastal region, I was raised in a hilly area of Wisconsin and sometimes I really miss meandering through a rolling landscape. (Which is a little hard to come by living five minutes from the ocean.)

And so when I checked out of my hotel room late Tuesday morning, I had just two objectives:

1. To drive down any ol’ side road that looked interesting, especially if it was sporting this wonderful sign:


2. To find a country church/cemetery to take pictures of. (I just have a thing for quaint country churches.)

And so off I went, happy as could be, inhaling contentment and sunshine and fresh air in equal measure. I puttered along my way, constantly on the lookout for loveliness around each corner. And thankfully, there were plenty of lovely (and interesting) sights to see.

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And then—oh, happy day!—I found my country church! The instant I drove by I squealed, “There it is! There it is! I found it!” (Thankfully, no one was lurking around the corner watching me as I talked so animatedly with myself.)

I hopped out of the car and was immediately immersed in quaint, country beauty and a clean country breeze. It was beyond blissful.

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And then as I was driving through Carthage, NC, I saw this house and immediately made the decision that our family needed to sell everything we own so that we can move to Carthage and buy this house. (I eventually reconsidered the wisdom of sharing that plan with my family. But it doesn’t mean that I can’t request this house when I get to heaven.)

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And finally I came across the most beautiful sight of all—a consignment store! Hurray and hallelujah!

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A country drive, sunny skies, lovely sights, bargain shopping, quiet time alone, a family (and doggie) waiting to welcome me home—it was truly a trip that renewed my soul.

(Today’s road trip to Greenville, on the other hand, will involve one plastic surgeon and one oncologist. I keep saying that I think each appointment will be my last and yet it seems like another trip always has to be made. At least I have the memories of last week’s lovely trip to sustain me on today’s not-quite-as-lovely journey.)