Mineola house

This year my father- and mother-in-law, Leonard and Judy Smyth, made a radical change in their lifestyle and moved to a rural house with acreage on Sundowner Lake in Mineola, TX.  Other than needing to repaint the kitchen and the family room’s dark, nautical blue walls and having to replace the roof after they moved in, they love it.

Judy enjoys sitting out on the deck in the morning with her coffee, watching the abundant wildlife: egrets, raccoons, hawks, large woodpeckers, and blue channel catfish in the lagoon nearby.  They can enjoy eating crappie (freshwater fish) anytime they want.  She does not like the spiders and the snakes, which also inhabit the land.

Judy and Leonard Smyth

Judy and Leonard Smyth

Her husband Leonard just laughs about the little black spiders, and flicks them off Judy if they happen to get on her. I would scream if they got on me, and would especially scream about the snakes. They have had to resort to spreading Snake-Away on their property, using a hoe to kill them, and even Leonard getting out his rifle and blasting the things. (Rifles are legal out there.)

Judy said one of their neighbors is a very generous, big-hearted person, especially regarding animals. She has five dogs, three cats, and one pig.  These are all rescue animals.  The neighbors live in a  beautiful home, and all of the animals live inside, too. Yes, even the pig. The pig’s name is Sugarpie, like the oldies song Sugarpie with the lyrics: “Sugarpie, honeybun, you know that I love you.”

pig

The pig actually minds quite well and is rather spoiled. Sugarpie goes to fairs and even pig-kissing contests. (In my mind, I was wondering who on earth would kiss a pig?!)  While our family doesn’t celebrate Halloween, this neighbor of my MIL’s even dresses up the pig on Halloween and has kids over from the neighborhood. The pig loves to eat celery out of your hand, munches it and grunts, then comes back for more. My husband Ray would say the pig would make great breakfast sausage.

After she first moved there to Mineola, Judy said she was scared to death the first time she drove to town alone, as she didn’t know the area and doesn’t have a cell phone (something her kids are after her about!).  She said, “But I found my way to Wallyworld (Walmart), and I knew then all is right with the world.” (If you knew how elegant my mother-in-law was, you’d understand why this and the stories about her new home are so amusing. She is one of the most beautiful, sophisticated people I’ve ever met.)

What about you? Is everything all right with you?  Remember that no matter where you are or what you are going through right now (even if it’s moving to a new home and facing spiders, and snakes!), God loves you and is watching over you.

*****

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