A Bit of a “State”

I’m in a bit of a “state,” as my Mama would call it. For all of the Southerners out there, you will understand this is a bad place to be. I’ve been living in my camper for nine months. Yep, the gestation period for one of my babies, but the end is most likely three to four months off. Am I having a llama?

At least the outside is well under way. Blow, my brick layer, is working with a torn tendon in his left foot. This was from a fall last year. I’m grateful he can do the job because everyone tells me he is the best, and I do believe it. By the way, this is his nickname because he likes to talk; it’s short for blowhard. I can attest he also loves to sing, but no one in Nashville is worried for their job. The Mexicans as they are referred to, David and Lewis Jiminez, are my framers. Watching them frame my house was like watching a circus act of highly skilled tightrope walkers. I caught myself catching my breath several times while they walked those beams. They have returned to put up the Hardie board on the eaves this week. (see the photo below of Blow and the Mexicans hard at work)

workersMy ridge vent, courtesy of the skills of Chris Parent of Metalera, is a product of Wisconsin. It looks amazing. Unfortunately, I ordered the eave vent that allows the ridge vent to work at maximum capacity too late to put on the house. It would have required taking off two rows of shingles and cutting back the already attached facia. So, Chris helped us find another eave vent that will work. “It’ll do, but it’s not as good as the Metalera product.” Yep, that’s my son’s take on it. I love that he believes in his product. This product has its own story, too. It arrived in a semi, all 750 pounds of it. The driver asked, “Where’s your forklift?” Like I keep one around for circumstances like this one. Doesn’t everyone? Luckily, my plumbers were here and helped us get it off the truck at the end of the driveway because the driver said, “I can’t get this truck down that driveway.” Really?! My dad, who drove an eighteen-wheeler, could have. They just don’t make ’em like they used to. Anyone who has driven any where near a semi on the highway knows this to be true. Right?

But I digress. This is the time of year when this Southern woman wants to be out in her garden. So, I found a spot away gardenfrom the construction zone and created my butterfly and hummingbird retreat (see photo). I now know why it wasn’t filled with trees and brush. It’s hard clay and rocks. So, for my birthday, my husband bought me an auger. I think this is equivalent to getting appliances. He’s so romantic. Luckily for me the auger came with a strong hubby to work it.

Speaking of the hubby (see photo in his farmer attire standing beside Fred, his UTV), he has joined Southern society with a vengeance. He’s on a first name basis with the manager ofTractor Supply in Lawrenceburg. He’s coaching the kickers on the Giles County High School football team. But the most Ray and Fredamazing change is he attended a parish council meeting. Oh, yeah! This is the same man who when asked to run for parish council at St. Malachy in Brownsburg, Indiana, said “NO WAY.” No explanation, just take no prisoners final. He’s even asked about finding the local Knights of Columbus. He’s a fourth degree, but hasn’t been a member since before the birth of our oldest son, who turned 38 this year. I think he’s channeling his father.

Thanks to my dear friend, Sheila Gissibl, I can laugh while in this “state.” I try to find some humor in each day and hope one day I will be sitting on my front porch sipping my tea. Maybe I’ll actually try a Mint Julep. Right now, I want something much stronger, Jack Daniels, straight up. After all, it is a Tennessee sipping whiskey.

You have a glimpse into my life these days. I’m curious. What drives you into a “state”?