Friday, April 30, 2010

seaport village


It was a beautiful day for hanging out at the docks.

DSC07420We walked and talked and shopped and generally enjoyed the sunshine, flowers ocean air and  the conveniently located porch swing.


DSC07406 DSC07391 DSC07389  DSC07429I had to grab a quick picture when the Florida Highway sailed by. What kind of a boat/barge  is that anyway?

earning the prize

Ever since we were at the Candy Depot, so basically for three days, I have been tryingDSC07379 to get Nolan to say “Taffy” or a reasonable facsimile thereof. He would look at me and smile the cutest smile ever. He would nod and say yes. He would give me every indication that he wanted it, but he wouldn’t say it…DSC07380

until this morning when we  were out shopping. Melanie was so worried that I had left the taffy at home, but I was prepared, and he absolutely loved it.

In fact, he earned another one for the same feat this afternoon.

Good boy, Nolan!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

watching truman run home

 Go Diamondbacks! DSC07349

Go Tru!




shopping for erika and the bridal shower

We drove to


to find

DSC07207  and fill this apothecary jar with robin egg blue candy to match Erika’s kitchen.DSC07256


When Melanie saw the astrobelts

(a favorite from the tuck shop at her school in England)

called sour belts in the US,

she was so nostalgic that the owner gave it to her for free!

Erika’s Bridal Shower


Melanie was the hostess.


I was the photographer, but Rachel sent me this picture.

I especially liked Erika’s ribbon bouquetDSC07307

that Melanie turned into a hat. DSC07305

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

hanging out with the california boys

I am happy to see these cute faces again.DSC07225


They are happy that I am back ;)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

birdhouse genealogy comes to life

In 1881, Frances Purdy built the Birdhouse. She willed it to her son. Then followed a series of half dozen or so owners in as many years.


There were several cotton crop failures in South Carolina because of the boll weevil and in the 1920’s many Caroliners moved to Florida. One such migrator was Thomas Arrington. He worked for the orange companies in a local packing house. He saved his money and bought first one orange grove and then another, until he owned many. He and his wife saw the Birdhouse aka Purdy Villa and decided to buy it and do some renovations. They enclosed the back porch to make a sitting room and added a fireplace. His wife wasn’t healthy and they made our tv room into a bedroom. Eventually, she passed away, and  he married her sister, known in the family as Sissy.

Sissy and Thomas owned the house for many years and most Sunday afternoons all the reasonably local Arringtons came to visit including these two.


Doug and I with Mildred and Charlie Arrington.

Thomas Arrington was Mildred’s uncle by marriage and thus, Charlie’s great uncle. They knocked on my door today and told me part of their story. I invited them to come back in a couple of hours when my husband was home, and they did.

Mildred is 93 and her son Charlie who was born on her birthday is 63. They loved seeing the house and I loved seeing them and listening to their stories.

She said that in those days the servants lived on the third floor. Charlie said that he was afraid to go up there, but occasionally he did when messing around with his cousins. They both remember “the kids” including himself, sliding down the banister.

Thomas willed the house to his daughter, Edith Lineback. She only recently passed away. How I would have loved to have chatted with her. All the stories that have been verbally passed down to me were verified and are apparently accurate.

It was a family home and they were happy to see that it still is a family home loved by us the same way that it was loved by them.

I was so happy for their very belated Sunday afternoon visit.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

34 years


After playing tennis, Doug slings both of our tennis bags over his one shoulder. Then we walk hand in hand out to the car. We have been married thirty-four years…and he is still my boyfriend. DSC07157

Happy Anniversary to us!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

for the beauty

 DSC07139 DSC07141 DSC07143  DSC07153 DSC07144 DSC07142

Happy Earth Day!


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

missionary memoirs


As a missionary helping patrons, I often have to ask them for their birthday so that I can log into their account and have a look at it as it looks to them. I secretly have two little FamilySearch wishes.

The first is to one day to help a patron with my same birthday. I don’t expect them to be born the same year, just the same date. Once however, I did have a patron that had the same birth month and same birth year.

My other little wish is to help a patron that I know. Last night, when I logged in there were three calls waiting in the queue and I could see that the first call from from a 407 area code. Wow! I thought, a Florida caller.

“Hello, this is Sister Carter answering new FamilySearch questions. May I have your name please?”

“This is Sister Whitcomb, a family history consultant, calling in for Sister Wilson, just a second and I will pass her over.”

“Sister Whitcomb, this is President Carter’s wife, Debbie Carter.”

Thus ensued and all the surprised and delighted chat that you would expect plus a couple of questions. “Do you do this from home?” (Yes.)  “How many hours a week do you work?” (15)

We could have easily kept on chatting, but since we were on the church’s nickel and I am invited to Sister Whitcomb’s son’s wedding reception in a few weeks, I asked to see what I could do to help waiting Sister Wilson. As it turns out, not a lot. Much as I would have loved to have impressed them  with my FamilySearch skills, hers was a problem that had to be escalated.

So I haven’t really helped anyone with my birthday, nor a patron that I know, yet…but, I am still patiently waiting…it could happen!


On this beautiful blue sky morning, I was working in my garden when suddenly I heard a Big KA-BOOM.

The thousands of leaves in the trees overhead had been precariously cradling the remnants of last night’s tropical storm. The sound vibration in the air tipped their balance just enough to cause them to lose their liquid acquisition…giving me an unexpected shower in my garden.

Doug came out of the house to share the moment and announced, “That was the shuttle!”

I laughed and was hurried into the house to watch it land via the televison.


Welcome back to earth!

While the shuttle has been gone on an extraordinary adventure, I have been doing all the things that ordinarily fill up the days of my life…but  also, enjoying the moments and miracles all around me.

Monday, April 19, 2010

meeting sister massey

Sister Massey and I are in the same missionary group. She lives in Tallahassee. We have spent nearly every Wednesday evening together for the last year, but we have never “actually” met each other…until tonight.DSC07135 

Helen and her husband, Wayne, came to Orlando to spend the week, and Doug and I went to Orlando to spend the evening with them.


Helen and I graduated from BYU the same year. We both took the genealogy class there! She is from Canada, but became a citizen a few years ago. We shared stories about our families and places we have been. It was wonderful getting to know them.

DSC07137After dinner, we went over to Millennia Mall. Helen had never been there, and she liked all my favorite places! Finally, we had to leave because the mall was closing.


We decided that we will just have to do it all over again.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


This morning Brianna worked with other kids in our ward to set up the decorations for the Stake Dance tonight. The theme is “Under the Sea”. They did the cutest decorations with fish net hanging over the light canopy and fishes hanging really everywhere. They had things like blue jello with swedish fish and marshmallows dipped in blue sugar to eat. They even had live goldfish for prizes!


Afterwards, we had ten of the young women plus Chanel and her friend, Lindsey, enjoying a beautiful afternoon on the water. It is significantly warmer than last week, but still not warm enough to tempt me to ski.


Melena Garrett, Allison Wilson, Shea Bingham, Nellie Lugo and Brianna above. Shelby Fulford and Anabel Nunez below.

DSC07133Then the younger girls left and the older ones had dinner and got ready for the dance.


Fun timzzzzzz.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

wild things

You make my heart sing…

The central Florida landscape has been painted with an explosion of wildflowers. I asked Doug to stop on our way home from tennis, so I could capture a picture of just one of the many fields sporting lavender. They grow in the open and they grow between the stands of orange trees. They grow along the highways and pretty much everywhere else that the wind has blown them, hither and yon.

And isn’t Doug  just funny taking a picture of me, taking a picture? But I did love the sky, so I had to share[1]

DSC07132  DSC07129


In my own yard, however, the purple flowers are comparatively sparse. It is the yellow ones that are just beginning their show.

Every year the bouquet atop the power line pole surprises me as if it is the first time I have ever seen it, and it is delighting me yet again.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

B e e e e e e


Yesterday when Brianna was babysitting a bee got lost and confused between her sunglasses and her face. You know the rest of the story. Except for the fact that when she woke up today she still looked like she had only just been stung.

DSC07125 Poor B.

Of course, this brought up some B-sting stories from the past.

When Tricia was just a very newborn baby, Doug and I decided to go for a drive with her one evening (in the days before car seats for infants.) Tricia was laying in my lap and we had the windows down. All of a sudden I started flailing and yelling scaring my driver husband half to death. I finally figured out that a bee had flown in the window. It stung me on my jaw line.

Doug’s story is from when he was a primary child. He and his brother, Tim, were exploring the woods in Lake Arrowhead, California. They happened upon a log and moving it, disturbed a beehive. As Doug tells the story, it was just like the cartoons, with he and Tim screaming, yelling and crying through the forest back to their cabin and the bees chasing them in hot pursuit the whole way. They made it back to the cabin pounding at the door to be let in. His father couldn’t imagine the event that was causing his sons this kind of distress. They were finally inside and both boys checked out from head to toe and all was well. They were safe. No bees, no bee stings.

But as his dad helped Doug take off his sweatshirt a bee flew out of the hood and stung his dad under the arm! You can only imagine the kind of yelling that produced!

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

spring breakers have to go home

It has been a beautiful week in central Florida. The weather has been gorgeous and my spring breakers have toasted their faces and arms and legs. They are heading back to North Carolina tomorrow hoping to be ahead of the traffic that will surely follow this weekend.


DSC06933 DSC06897 DSC06893 DSC07090 DSC07044 DSC06957 

We did have a fun time!