The Living Without Series

This is a series of posts that I wrote back in 2006 on living with less stuff. Check them out: liv011Living #2liv031liv04

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The Chicken Doctor


The Architect


A Real Man

Where have I been? Oh, glad you asked. I’ve been ogling this sight. These are the type of people I love. LOVE! Why? Because their hands are rough. They have prematurely aged skin from sun exposure. They get up hours before the rest of the world starts hitting the snooze button. They wear chaps….chaps and cowboy boots and they drive trucks and wear chaps. At the end of the day they probably smell a bit like axle grease, manure and horse sweat, but it doesn’t matter cause their wearing chaps.

Now, let’s go back to the rough hand comment. I’m married to a man with big, dry, rough hands. I prefer to hold a warm, dry, rough hand. When I shake the hand of a man and it’s soft, silky and (God-help-me) dewy or moist or clammy or sweaty or lotioned, my view of him changes. I instantly wonder if he ever works with his hands. Work that extends beyond a keyboard. Work that would require him to break a sweat, use his muscle or end up in the emergency room from oh, lets say, slamming his hand in the spring of the garage door he is repairing while the rest of the house is still asleep or jumping off the roof because his wife just screamed that their toddler fed an open safety pin to the baby. You know, common stuff like that.

My husband comes home from work everyday sporting a dress shirt and tie with his leather bag strapped over his shoulder and his ipod plugged into his ears. But, on weekends when he’s working on a project and he pulls on his Carhart pants and leather tool belt (which is the closest thing to chaps around here…grrrrowr) I think, “Now there’s a man!”. I love watching him wield a chainsaw or chop firewood or, my favorite, when he single handedly schlepped what seemed like ten tons of shingles up a ladder to our roof.

I love that he will discard his white collar appearance and get down in the muck to fix anything. Now, he doesn’t always do it right the first time and we have had to call for help more than once, but he’s willing to try to accomplish just about any repair job or need around the woodsy existence that we call home.

With that said, this weekend he’s got big plans to slip into his Carharts (grrrowr), sharpen the blade of his ax, round up the evil rooster and kill him. Not quite the same as cowboys working cattle, but close enough. Do you all want me to take pictures? Who’s up for a chicken dinner?

My Desirae

Friday night I took my daughter shopping. She is so amazing. I often look at her and wonder how on earth is she turning out to be such an incredible person with me as her mother??? Honestly, she is the girl I always looked up to. Why, that would make her Desirae Henderson!

Desirae was this smart, sweet, buck-toothed girl that I grew up with. She always did the right thing. She studied hard, she practiced her piano, she made friends easily, she wore simple clothes but always looked cute, she loved people and showed her loved to others with pure genuine Christian spirit. She loved her family and was respectful and obedient to her parents. She was good at everything she tried and she made you want to be a better person. Now, I have my very own Desirae living in my house!

As we stepped into the mall Ellen noticed all the teenagers loitering. She looked at me and rolled her eyes and made some sort of gagging noise about all the kids there. She even wondered why so many young kids were there without their parents.

We bought some skirts and then found a store with much better buys and she happily agreed to return the other skirts so we could save some money. She by-passed trendy clothes and picked out plain t-shirts and a polka-dotted skirt.

We sat in the food court and ate Japanese food. We talked and laughed and even made fun of each other. I called her “Metal Mouth” and she called me “Zit Chin” we bantered back and forth calling out our physical discrepancies while gasping at the shrewdness. I love that she can make fun of herself and me.

We called home and everyone was sleeping. We went to the book store and sat in front of the antiquity books and thumbed through some classics, finally purchasing Virgil’s Aeneid that she needed for school.

We bought coffee and sneaked it into the 10:30 showing of The Astronaut Farmer. We were the only people in the theatre. I told Ellen that I had rented the place out just for us.

On the way home she said, “Thanks Mom”, but I should have thanked her for being such an incredible girl. For being My Desirae.

Scary Man!

My husband had to pick my daughter up from a friend’s house last night on his way home from work.

When Clay rang the bell, the sweet little sister of Ellen’s friend came to answer the door. She took one look at Clay and ran back up the stairs yelling, “There’s a tall scary man at the door! And he has an Afro!!!!”

Ellen said, “That’s my dad!”

It didn’t matter. She was too terrified to come back.

This is the scariest picture I could find of him. Warning: don’t let your young children view this, they might not recover from their fright.