A Few Of My Faves


Caught this sweet butterfly in action yesterday

By Lisa, Tuesday,  July 17,2018

How are you? Happy Tuesday!!!! I promised to share some of my favorite things I am enjoying lately.  Some of these you may have already tried. These are just a few things I am loving lately.  Keep in mind if you have sensitive skin these products might not be for you.  I am lucky and have been able to use just about anything on my skin without having a reaction to it.

1. This pure clay cleanser from L’Oréal is great!! It will make your skin feel wonderful. This is available for several different skin types  I got this at Walmart it is about $6.00 you can also get it at Target.  B60E2D84-E4FE-433F-A596-F0FF9CB50D03

2. Shea Sugar Scrub is an all over body scrub it will make your body feel smooth as silk.  I especially love the Tropical Mango scent.  It makes your whole shower experience refreshing.  I got this at Walmart it is available at Target and several other places.  This is about $6-$7 depending on where you get it.  13956A70-1383-407A-BB1E-651843308C8D

3. Big Sexy Powder Play will give your hair both volume and lift.  This comes in a small container only 0.53 oz. but a little goes a long way.  Just sprinkle a small bit of this powder on top of your head like around your hair part and lift it with your fingers.  It will give your hair so much volume and texture, again only a small amount.  You can find this at most hair salons and again at Target ( you can tell where I love to shop) it is about $8.00 – $10.00 depending on where you get it.



4. The Brow Stylist Definer is my favorite of all of these items  it is by L’Oreal. This stylist is long and thin with a thin brush on one end and a brow liner on the other. This is about $7.00 and I have found it at Walmart and Target.  It is the easiest tool to use and I think I may buy several to stock up.



5. This apricot facial scrub I use all the time,  it makes my face feel so smooth and really makes applying your makeup so easy.  You can find this just about anywhere cosmetics are sold  it is very inexpensive at only about $3.00-$4.00.  There is also one for sensitive skin.


6. I love this App. This app is called one second every day it allows you to record one second out of your day for an entire month. It puts it all together for you and it makes a little movie of your month. Every month.  It is so much fun and so easy to use.  You can get it at the App Store and there is a charge. $4.99. But it’s totally worth it. You can share it with up to 4 or 5 people on your plan.  I will show you my movie at the end of the month. I am having so much fun with it.


7.  The last thing I have to show you is this vacuum cleaner I bought a couple of months ago.  It is the dyson ball animal 2. It is made especially for picking up pet hair. We had another dyson for about 14 years, we actually still have it, it has just stopped picking up dirt and pet hair as well as it used to.  This dyson ball swiveles and gets into incredibly tight spots.  It is unbelievable how much dirt and pet hair you can pick up with it. It is $499.00 and we got ours at Home Depot. If it lasts as long as the other it will totally be worth it.  Isn’t it cute?



8. Oh wait I almost forgot this delicious new drink from Starbucks,  The Mango Dragonfruit Refresher.  Only 100 calories per grande.  It is so yummy!!!!



I hope you will be able to try some of these if you haven’t already.  Let me know what you think.

Love your day your way!!


Here I Go Again

By Lisa, Sunday July 15, 2018


     No this is not my Harley but more about it in a minute

Here I go Again, I don’t know why I have that Whitesnake song in my head but I do.  Shows you how old I am. Ha

Hello, Hello, Hello how are you?  I don’t know where you live but here in the south it has been HOT!!!! Every day in the 90’s and then add in the humidity and it is almost unbearable.

I have had the best weekend and I just want to share some things that have been going on.  I had a long weekend off from work starting with Friday. I had an appointment with my Scruffy dog to get his eyes checked at UT Vet Hospital in Knoxville. The Doctor was so happy with Scruffy, his eyes are doing great and best of all. He can see!!! This has just opened up a new world to him he is so curious now about everything. He has also gotten a lot braver and rushes to the door barking when someone comes in. He never did that before.  Of course I guess it was hard to bark at what you couldn’t see.

Anway I am so happy. He is also out of the cone collar for most of the time.

Y’all I stepped out of my comfort zone a little Friday night and went to a Biker Rally with my friend Lorie and her husband Paul. They have a camper at the site where the Rally is held every year, and Paul is part of the crew that does the Rally.  I could never be accused of being anything like a biker chick but turns out it doesn’t matter I was welcomed just the same.  I had a great time. The money raised helps support charities so it’s all for a good cause. Several bands played and there were many food vendors.  One of the bikers told me I was dressed a little fancy for a biker rally. I told him it was my first one I’ll know next time. Lol.

                                                     I saw some  gorgeous bikes

I had so much fun and saw some amazing bikes, mostly Harleys. I didn’t get to ride one but Paul (Lorie’s husband)  has promised me a ride soon.

I also got busy and finished knitting three scarves ( remember I told you I couldn’t knit just one at a time).  The good thing about working on more than one at a time is you get finished with three almost at the same time. See, there is a method to my madness.


I do love to knit scarves they’re fun and you can take them anywhere with you. I always keep one going in the car.  I am also trying to knit enough scarves by Christmas, both men’s and women’s, to have enough to give all the patients at our local kidney dialysis clinic. I feel for those people and know that Mark and I are so fortunate that he didn’t have to spend one day on dialysis before he got his kidney transplant. If you missed that story you can check out parts 1 and 2 here and here  I would love to just do a little something special for those having to travel to the dialysis clinic several times a week. Especially in the winter when it is so cold.


We have a few blackberries on our property.  A very few. Every year I try to catch them when they ripen and make a cobbler.  Every year I wait too late and someone, I guess one of our neighbors, comes along and gets them.  I am not sure who does this.  The blackberries are close to the end of our driveway and people probably assume they are free for the taking.  I noticed last Wednesday that there were a few, probably enough for a cobbler.  I went back yesterday to get them and they were gone!!!   Do you think that stopped me from having my cobbler?  noooooooo.



Don’t judge me.  It was delicious.

And now more about that Whitesnake song I think it says a lot about me right now.  Life is for living it is too short not to enjoy and do the things you want.  An’ I ain’t wasting no more time.

I don’t know where I’m going
But, I sure know where I’ve been
Hanging on the promises
In songs of yesterday
An’ I’ve made up my mind,
I ain’t wasting no more time
Here I go again
Here I go again.

You know you’re singing it in your head now, if you’re old enough to know that song lol.

Join me on Tuesday I will be sharing some of my new favorite things.

Love your day your way




Awesome Weekend Trip to the Amish Community Farm.


Sunday July 1, By Lisa


Seriously how can it be July. I know I said the same thing last month but wow half the year is over.  I have probably never told you July is not my favorite month.  Not because of the heat and humidity we are so well known for in the south but because of my job.

I love my job but let me tell you July is a challenge for me and my coworkers. I work at a tourist attraction where we may see 25,000 people just during the month of July. Dealing with that many people and long hours sometimes gets the best of us.  We decided we were going to do some special things for all of the workers during the month of July to make getting through the month a little easier. I’ll keep you posted on that.

I took an extra day on Friday to take my Scruffy to the vet to get his eyes checked out. He is almost two weeks out from cataract surgery and doing amazing.  He still has to wear the cone collar for another week and then we can start taking it off for an hour or so while we are with him.

I have really been craving vegetables. This time of the year every vegetable you could want is in ripe abundance. I had heard about a community farm market not too far from my house and decided to check it out on Saturday morning. It wound up being about ten miles from my house. The drive to the farm was absolutely beautiful. This is a working farm owned and run by the Amish.

The last half mile to the farm is on a dirt road where you get a glimpse of the vegetables growing and the green houses they keep. They also sell sheep and cattle.

Saturdays are busy days at the market and lots of people are driving in from nearby towns to get the fresh vegetables.  But it’s not just vegetables sold here the farmers also make soap, hand carved walking sticks, braided rugs, granola and the most amazing cinnamon rolls still warm from the oven.

Look at the size of this cinnamon roll!!!! It was delicious. And yes I ate more than half of it.

The vegetables were gorgeous. I wanted all of them even though I knew me and Mark could never eat all of them.

After the Market I drove into the beautiful little town of Tellico Plains.  So much beauty in our area.

Came home and cooked our feast.


The end result

I had a very lazy Sunday getting into a good book.  A great weekend overall. I’m ready to get my week and this month started.  What are you doing for the month of July?

Love your day your way.


I Donated A Kidney To My Husband (Part 2)

Wednesday, June 27th by Lisa

As promised here is the rest of the kidney story.

After Mark was put on the transplant list we started thinking about people who might donate a kidney. Wow that really is sort of mind-boggling. It’s not just something you can bring up in casual conversation.  “Hey can I have one of your kidneys?”  We actually did have several people tell us that they would be tested if they were needed.  I can’t begin to tell you how much this meant to us.

I knew I was the same blood type so I wanted to be tested first.  After the initial test to see if our blood was compatible ( it was)  the doctors tested my veins to see if they would work with everything that had to be rerouted. They were fine. I then had a renal ultrasound to make sure I had two working kidneys. I did. At this point I was assigned my own nephrologist so that there would be no bias about whether or not I could donate a kidney to Mark.

There were many more tests for me. It took about two months to complete all of them. Since I was getting close to being picked as a donor Vanderbilt held off testing anyone else. Mark and I even had to have counseling about me donating.  And financial counseling to determine whether we could undergo this financially especially with the immunosuppressant drugs. Fortunately our insurance was great and even covered travel expenses to and from Vanderbilt.  This is after it kicked in nationally once Mark was put on the Kidney Donor List, and it was then in our network.

My tests were finished just before Christmas in 2010.  All of the data then had to go before the transplant team at Vanderbilt.  We were told we would hear something by the end of January.   We got the news on January 24th.  The doctors wanted to schedule the transplant soon so it was scheduled for February 24th.

We had a lot of work to do.  We had to have a living will and a medical power of attorney because we would both be unconscious at the same time. This is the first thing you are asked for when you check into the hospital.

One of the things that you must have before you undergo something like this is an excellent support team.  Mark and I had a wonderful team.  Two of my sisters went to Vanderbilt with us and then stayed at a nearby hotel with us for about two weeks while we were recovering.  Several of our family members came to Nashville the night before the surgery so they would be there for us first thing the morning of the surgery.

The night before the surgery Mark nor I slept at all.  Of course we were nervous.  The doctors at Vanderbilt did these transplants every week.   We felt very confident with them. Still it was a huge undertaking.  Although Mark was so grateful that I was doing this he still felt bad that I was doing this for him and told me repeatedly how grateful he was.   I never had a doubt that I was doing the right thing.

I felt especially blessed to be donating a kidney to my husband.  We had been married for almost twenty years and had no children.  I felt like this was something I was meant to do.

We arrived at the hospital at 5:00 a.m. with lots of our family members with us.  My surgery started at 7:00. My kidney was removed and carried to an adjoining room where Mark was prepped for his surgery.  They placed the kidney in his abdomen.  The kidney actually never stopped working it kicked in and Mark’s Creatinine level started to drop down closer to where it was supposed to be.

Many years ago when the first kidney transplants were done the transplanted kidney was put under the arm.  When Mark and I first started going to Vanderbilt we saw a man who had just had a transplant and he was holding his stomach with a pillow.  I remembered thinking why would his stomach be sore?   The doctors explained that this was the best place to put the new kidney with the least complications.

Both surgeries went well and Mark and I were only in the hospital for three days.  We did have to stay in Nashville in a hotel near the hospital so that Mark would be close for the Doctor appointments that he would have two or three times a week. For the first week.

My sisters took wonderful care of us and when we left Nashville we stayed with Mark’s mom for about a week because neither of us could drive or do anything at home.

Mark’s recuperation time was a little longer than mine.  I was back to work within a month.  My kidney was cut laparoscopic and brought through my naval. So other than being very sore for about three days my recovery wasn’t too bad.  Because Mark had to have a large incision in his abdomen to place the kidney it took longer to heal.

Once we got home we had to go back to Vanderbilt every week for a month and then twice a month and then once a month. And now Mark has to return to Vanderbilt three times a year. I only see my doctor for testing once a year.  Mark takes his immunosuppressant drugs and never misses a dose.  I do not have to take medication I  can’t even tell I have only one kidney.  Our lives have gone on just as before except for a deep gratitude knowing we have been blessed.  As I said we have no children so we named the kidney Baby Kay ( K for kidney) and we celebrate every year on February 24th.


This was us leaving the hospital

  During our short hospital stay.

A funny story I like to tell:  The Tuesday following the surgery on Thursday, Mark and I were back at Vanderbilt for Mark to get his Creatinine level checked.  We were in the waiting room and I was talking to a man sitting near us.  He told me he had just found out he might have to have a kidney transplant.  I said “well it’s really not too bad.”  He said his daughter wanted to be tested to see if she could be a donor.  He told me he wouldn’t let her it was just too painful for the donor.  I said “I just gave my husband a kidney on Thursday and I am fine”  he looked at me in amazement and said “wow, Thursday like five days ago? maybe I will think about it then”.

Mark and I have spoken to many groups about live kidney donation and continue to be advocates for this.  It is so very important.  So many people die waiting for a kidney.  At the very least sign your license so you may be a donor and share this request with your family.  You will not regret it.  Thank you!!!!   If you missed part one you can read it here I Donated a Kidney to My Husband (Part 1)

Love your day your way

I Donated a Kidney to My Husband (Part 1)

Monday June 25th,  by Lisa

(I made this a two parter  because it is lengthy.)

Many of you know about this part of my life but many of you do not.  In 2010 my husband Mark  found out quite suddenly that he was in kidney failure.  He had gone to the doctor for routine blood work and they called the following day to say that his creatnine level was unusually high and wanted him to have a renal ultrasound.

Mark has had high blood pressure for many years. Whether the kidney problem was due to the high blood pressure or the high blood pressure  caused the kidney problem who knows.  It could have been a shock to his system that threw everything out of whack.

Mark has always had a kidney that had never formed properly so basically he only had one good functioning kidney.  He did not know this until he was an adult.

I will never forget the day that he told me the hospital had called to have him come in and do an ultrasound.  He had not experienced any problems with urination or anything like that but his ankles were always swollen. He told me this was because he had to wear boots to work.  You know when you have one of those moments that you just know is going to change your life? well this was one of those.  It was a Tuesday in April 2010.  We were at home in the kitchen and I just had this feeling that our lives were about to change forever.

On the day of the ultrasound I was at home and just before the appointment time the hospital called and had some questions about an appointment they were setting up with a doctor I was not familiar with.  The appointment was for Mark and I ask what kind of doctor this was and the lady on the phone said the doctor was a nephrologist.  I said why does he need to see a nephrologist and she said ” because he is in kidney failure”!!!!!  my heart almost stopped. ( I don’t know who this woman was but I still want to drag her through the phone and slap her for the way she delivered that information to me.)

I cancelled an appointment I had that day so I could be at the ultrasound. The ultrasound showed that although there was no problem urinating the kidneys were not filtering as they should.

We later met with Mark’s primary care physician and he explained that the creatinine level should not be that high it was about 4 and a normal level is 0.5-1.2 for adults.   Something was going on and he wasn’t sure what. He told us rather matter of factly that in the near future Mark would probably be put on dialysis.  He set an appointment for the nephrologist for later the next week.

When we met with the nephrologist he also told Mark he was in kidney failure and had only about 30% kidney function. This would continue to decline but he could be put on a diet and medication regimen that could slow down the decline. He recommended he get the port installed for the dialysis. I asked about a kidney transplant and he said you were not eligible for a transplant until you had been in dialysis at least a few years. We later found out this was BS.  I asked if I could be tested and he said I would first have to have a kidney biopsy and this was very painful and dangerous. We also found out later this was BS.  All of this information was coming from our local doctors.  Mark had been seeing his doctor every six months.  We could never understand why Mark’s  creatinine  level was getting higher through the last few years and this was the first time we were hearing anything about it.

After hearing all of this we decided it was time for a second opinion.  A woman I worked with had a son with severe kidney problems and he had gone to Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville and had gotten great results.

I called Vanderbilt and set the appointment but they couldn’t see us until the end of June. Vanderbilt is about a four hour drive for us. In the meantime we had a cruise scheduled for the Caribbean. We decided to go ahead with the cruise and Mark would watch his diet and take his meds.



  At Grand Cayman, one of the stops on our cruise.

The cruise was a lot of fun but with the worry of the kidney issue it did sort of cloud everything. We just wanted to get back home and get to  Vanderbilt for the tests.


The tests at Vanderbilt revealed the same thing. Mark was in kidney failure. However the doctors there had a different approach. They wanted him to have a kidney transplant.  They would do additional tests to get him on the National Kidney Transplant list.

Here are some  facts from the National Kidney Foundation:


Another thing was that Vanderbilt Medical Center was not in our network for insurance so we were receiving some crazy medical bills. I was afraid to go to the mailbox. Once Mark got put on the Transplant list he went into a National Network and he was covered but we still racked up a lot of medical bills prior to that. If your doctor is  not in the Network the insurance doesn’t have to pay 50% like you probably think or have heard.  They can actually pay whatever amount they choose.

The doctors at Vanderbilt wanted Mark to find a kidney donor otherwise it could take five years to get a kidney.  How do you ask someone for a kidney?

I knew that I was the same blood type and I immediately wanted to be tested.

Part 2 coming up on Wednesday.  I love this story and the way it worked out.  I love to tell it because I hope it will encourage living kidney donation.

Love your day your way.


I’m Having A Staycation

Wednesday, June 13th by Lisa


Good morning,  how is your week going? how about your summer?

I decided a few weeks ago that I would take a week off from work and just do some things that I wanted and needed to do. I decided on this week.  June 11-15.

Our summer at work is getting ready to kick in and I knew there was no way I could take time off then.

Even though the Hubs could only get a couple of those days off , I wanted to get some things done for me and around the house.  We could then spend a day or two doing some fun things together.

Now of course me being the Type A person that I am I immediately made a list of things I wanted to get done such as:

Clean my floors

Clean my yard and cut my shrubs and plant some flowers

Take items to goodwill

Get a mani-pedi

Buy a car

Post some things on Poshmark

Have some quality time with my sisters and friends

Go to a Smokies game

Work on several blog posts

Read a couple of books I haven’t had time to read

Clean out my garage

I looked back over this list and thought, woman you are crazy!!!!  just because I’m not going out of town doesn’t mean I have to stay home and kill myself.  But never fear life stepped in and kept me from doing damage to myself by trying to get all of these things done.

You know they say that life happens when you are busy making plans, and that is exactly what happened here.

I have mentioned that my mother in law fell and broke her hip a couple of months back.  She had a total hip replacement. She has had a lot of problems with this including a serious infection where the prosthesis almost had to be removed to clear up the infection.

Anyway she has been staying in a rehab facility about an hour from us.  The facility called a few days ago and told us she was being released yesterday.  We had talked to her about going to an assisted living facility to try to get her a little more prepared for going home.  So that was the plan but we had no idea we would get such short notice.

I had to go into overdrive to get her to the doctor and get a release from the doctor and have her IVs removed, and try to get a room at the facility which is closer to us.  this is still an ongoing process with a lot of steps involved so we will just take it a step and a day at a time.

I guess I am disappointed that a lot of the things I wanted to get done won’t.  But it is also a good thing that I have time to get these things taken care of for my mother in law.  She can’t do them on her own and it is just me and my husband to take care of everything.

I planted some Marigolds over the weekend they are my favorite summer flowers

I did get to spend the day with my sister yesterday. We always have such a wonderful time together.  We hang out and bounce ideas off of each other, bitch, moan and complain and laugh ourselves silly. We did some shopping, had Starbucks and went to see a movie.   That is what we both needed yesterday.  She also went car shopping with me. She has a really good eye and is a stickler for details.  She asks all the questions I don’t think of.  (More about our car buying adventures in a later post)

So it is Wednesday and I think I will go back through that list and choose some fun family and friends things to do.  Life is too short to worry about cleaning  when you can be having a good time right?   I have to remember to take my own advice and live in the moment and keep it real.  I am headed outside to enjoy my coffee in this cool morning air.  What are you doing this summer?


Love your day your way


Just Another Manic Monday.

Tuesday, June 5, by Lisa


Yes I know it is Tuesday and not Monday but I didn’t get around to this last night for obvious reasons. Refer back to the title.

Yesterday I started the day with an early morning appointment in Knoxville at the UT Veterinary Medical Center. My little Scruffy was going to get his cataracts checked out to see if anything  could be done to regain some of his sight.  You may remember that Scruffy came into our family back in February. He was homeless and dumped out or Lost, we’re not sure.  He found his way to my sister’s house.  She was not ready to have another dog so she called me and  I saw him and fell in love. The next day I took him to the vet and had him checked out. He had a bad yeast infection on his skin and was malnourished and had cataracts.   I decided to keep him.

We got all of his issues taken care of. We could not find an owner and he had not been chipped.  I knew that we would have to address the cataracts. The vet determined that he was only about 6 or 7 years old.  Since then Scruffy has become such a part of our family I don’t know what we would do without him.

The Veterinary Medical Center is about an hour drive. We got there and was taken right back. The Vet Tech, Leslie, ran several tests on Scruffy’s eyes.  Dr. Ward came in to discuss other tests that he would need to determine whether or not Scruffy was a candidate for cataract surgery.  The tests would take approximately three to four hours.  I had the option of leaving Scruffy and picking him up later in the day, or returning with him at another time.  Having to schedule the tests at a later date would mean delaying the surgery if he was able to have it.  I decided to leave and pick him up a little later.


Since I had a few hours to kill I decided to head over to the mall and grab something  to eat at the food court and do some work while I was there.  After a quick trip to the bathroom I placed my food order and took it to a table.  I reached for my phone and it was not in my bag.  I often do this and keep searching and finally come up with it. But not this time.  I realized I had left my phone in the bathroom, probably in the stall or on the sink.  I had just gotten my food so I didn’t want to throw it out.  I spotted an elderly couple at a nearby table and went over and said ” would you please watch my food while I go and search for my phone?”  they did.  they were adorable.  I ran back to the bathroom in a panic thinking about everything I couldn’t do without my phone.  I hate to be that dependent on it but I am.  I ran back to the bathroom stall and there it was on top of the tissue dispenser.   At this point I had to question my sanity.

After working for about an hour I decided to walk around the mall and check out the shops.  You know it is really sad but the malls are just not what they used to be.  Many many stores are closed and shops are moving to the strip malls.  This leaves a lot of vacant space.  It seems like such a waste.


I finally headed back to the Veterinary Medical Center.  It was almost 5:00 and I wanted to beat Knoxville rush hour traffic if possible.  I went in and Leslie came out to discuss Scruffy and the tests.  She said Scruffy had two mature cataracts that were ready to come off. This is called phacoemulsification. How do you like that word?   All of his other tests were good. The surgery will take place in two weeks.

We did hit rush hour traffic and it took us until after 7:00 pm to get home. Y’all Scruffy and I were wiped out.  We hit the couch and watched TV the rest of the night.

A manic but good day because my Scruffy will be able to see again.  I can’t wait until the surgery is behind him.  He is such a good boy and he stole everyone’s heart while he was at the Medical Center.

Soooo how was your Monday?

Love your day your way