September 11, 2001. Asheboro High School, Asheboro, NC
19 years ago, I was a junior in high school, sitting in my first period class. I was a JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps) cadet and we were sitting in our classroom. School had just started and it was a clear sunny day. I almost didn’t attend school that day, as I was dealing with a sinus infection. In fact, my mother had written a note to the school giving me permission to leave at lunch for a doctor’s appointment. Of everything I remember from that day, I can’t for the life of me remember who told us to turn on the TV, but at some point, CNN came on, and we watched with interest, believing what the rest of the country believed- a plane accidentally hit the North Tower. It wasn’t until the second tower was hit that we realized, along with everyone else, our nation was under attack.
From that moment on, the horrors seemed to multiply and get worse by the second. The computer teacher burst into the door to tell us the Pentagon was on fire. My JROTC colonel’s son lived and worked near the World Trade Center, and when the towers collapsed, he still had not heard from him. The relief on his face when he finally spoke to his son was incredible. When I went to the office to sign out and go to my doctor’s appointment, there were so many parents in the office I couldn’t open the door. A man from my church at the time saw me and shouldered me through the crowd. He said, “Their mama wanted the kids at home, so she asked me to come get them.”
For the rest of the day, everything stopped. Teachers quit teaching and we stayed glued to CNN throughout my classes. Radio programming stopped and everything switched to coverage of 9/11. Since no one nationwide was allowed to be in military uniforms, we were made to change out of our JROTC uniforms. For days afterward, everyone seemed numb. Life was incredibly quiet. That day, we experienced the end of normal life as we knew it, and in many ways, things have never been the same again.
Present day: 11 September, 2020 19 years later
I cannot remember at what point the radio and television programming returned to normal. I can’t remember what made us stop class and turn on that TV. At the same time, there are many things I will never forget. I’ll never forget when the second tower fell and the CNN reporter remarked, “There are no words.” I’ll never forget the pictures of the crowded stairwells and the video of people running for their lives through the streets as a giant ash cloud chased them through Manhattan. I’ll never forget the President’s stone faced realization when he found out about the hijackers hitting the World Trade Center. I’ll never forget David Letterman’s tearful tribute to the victims. I’ll never forget the eerie quiet and numbness that enveloped us in the days following.
A few years later as a college student with a minor in criminal justice, I took a class called “International Terrorism.” It was in that class I learned a lot about 9/11- in fact, we had to sign a waiver that if we developed psychological issues from our study on 9/11, we wouldn’t sue the school. I saw many more things that I won’t forget, and many of them, I wish I could.
Years later, as I taught at Southeastern Randolph Middle School, I would learn that a lady who grew up in the same community where I grew up became a flight attendant and was killed on United 93. Each year, our local high school honors the life of Sandy Waugh Bradshaw. I also taught a young man whose brother Christopher Jacob Levy was inspired by 9/11 to join the Marine Corps. He was killed in action while serving his second tour of duty. Today, the students I teach were born post-9/11 and will never know just how much the world has changed. My own children will never understand this.
While the horrors of that day will never leave those of us who are old enough to remember, there is a lesson to be gained from it. At this moment 19 years ago, thousands of people laid down their heads never knowing they had only hours left. None of us know how many hours we have left- we can only live while we can and love our loved ones while we still have them on this earth.
I know it isn’t quite fall yet; it won’t be fall until the 22nd. However, after the year we have had, I am into doing whatever brings me joy these days. Fall decorating brings me joy- our home is the most beautiful to me when it’s decorated for fall and Christmas. So I decided to decorate early…and I am so glad I did it.
I’m not going to show you every single room in our home, nor am I going to show you every fall decor item. Consider this our highlight reel.
Our living room is one of my favorite rooms to decorate, now that we built the fireplace. I love the orange pillows against the navy plaid chairs. We topped our mantle off with a fall garland, pumpkins, simple white candlesticks and candles, and a fall wreath from my family.
We also have fall pillows and a throw made from my dad’s T-shirts on our family room sofa.
Our two bathrooms have these pipe shelves, and we have decorated both of them for fall.
Our kitchen, which is under renovation, has a tiny bit of fall decor as well. This pitcher belonged to my great grandmother and I bet she’d love to know I am using it.
Lastly, our dining room is particularly lovely this time of year. My favorite things in the room are this fall runner I bought last year and a set of pretty placemats my grandmother gave me.
I hope you have a blessed day, and I will see you again this Friday for a post from a special guest.
We had a Target version of an Intex family pool at the start of summer. It was 7 feet in diameter with a bench and it held 200 gallons of water. It was great.
Until we came outside one morning to find it leaking badly and partially deflated. I tried to patch it and make it last but to not avail.
Due to the quarantine, kiddie pools are hard to come by. I had heard good things about the Intex Easy Set pools and found a smaller sized model for a reasonable price.
I knew where I wanted the pool but the spot wasn’t level. I used our garden tiller to level up the spot.
I raked out the dirt so it would be level and I used stall mats to ensure the kids could hop out of the pool onto a dry, non muddy surface.
Set up is super easy. Take it out of the box and spread it out on a level surface. Inflate the top ring with a hand pump. If you’re using a filter, follow the directions and assemble and connect the filter. If you aren’t using a filter, insert the plugs into the holes.
Then, after you have put the plugs in the filter hose holes and made sure the drain is closed, begin filling your pool. As your pool fills, your sides will rise. Be careful not to overfill it.
Finally, when your pool is filled, enjoy it with your family!
There are a lot of things I like about this pool. If we had a little bit larger of a pool we would have gotten the pump and filter. This pool is only 294 gallons so we are doing fine with our chlorine dispenser and our pool vacuum. I like the fact that is durable and easy to set up- it also is really easy to clean.
If I were to reorder this, I’d get the eight foot instead of the six foot. I don’t really consider that a con, since that was my mistake and no fault of the pool. Even at six feet, the four of us can sit together comfortably.
In short, if you are looking for a small pool for you and your small children with low maintenance, look no further than an Intex Easy Set.
Enjoy and we will see you again tomorrow for a furniture re-do.
Hi, all! We are glad to be back after taking two weeks off of blogging. I am having a hard time finding things to write about, since we are still largely unable to go anywhere or do much. I am planning to resume a regular blogging schedule next week.
Today I want to resume farmhouse Friday by sharing some super cute home decor items at Tractor Supply. If you have never checked out their home decor section, I highly recommend you do so!
1. RedShed Farmhouse Bench
This super cute little farmhouse bench is reasonably priced and it would look cute on your front porch or in your entry way.
2. Farmhouse yard windmill
I have wanted a windmill since forever!! This would look great in my side yard. I know it doesn’t really do anything but it looks really cool.
3. White barn star
These stars look so cute hanging on the wall and you can hang up a bunch of them or just a few! They have some other colors as well.
4. RedShed Green Lantern
How cute would this look on a shelf, or maybe get three of them and put them in a wood box? These little lanterns would be so cute in so many different ways.
Im always a sucker for metal and wood signs and this one is very cute.
There are way more cute things to choose from! I recommend taking a trip to your local store and seeing for yourself. Thanks for reading!!!!