The Way It Was….


Dear Reader:

Take a good look and then wave good-bye to my old porch…the way it was! My moon flower and morning glory vines are gone… Here are where most of the vines and planters are located temporarily (until Anne and I can find a better home for them in the backyard Monday.)

The vines are draped over branches on the Bradford Pear haphazardly… now I must “baby” them until we can relocate them to a happier place while major “construction” takes place on my house.


It all started innocently enough…by a remark from Mandy the last time she and Eva Cate were over here a couple of weeks ago.

Up until then I felt pretty proud of myself….this summer I have put in new parts on the old car and it is running smoothly again, and I just had a new hot water heater installed to replace my old one that died a few weeks ago. I worked out ways to handle both situations…surely…the bad mojo was gone now….or so I thought.

With the exception of one bathroom…to date  the rest of my rooms have new and/or fairly new paint jobs with cute accessories- newly painted cabinets, new furniture decor….my home makes me so happy now…I find myself walking around both sides smiling…it’s taken a life time to accomplish this…but now back to the story….

Mandy was holding Jakie and came out on the porch…looked down and said…”Your porch is sinking.” I had never noticed anything…but when I joined her…it was easy to see where it was beginning to slant on one side.

Then I realized that the slanting porch ( that supports two columns which, then, supports the roof…was off-balance.) I felt like Chicken Little…”The sky is falling…the sky is falling.”

I called my wonderful friend, Paul Sanders, who I trust completely, to walk around my house and tell me what should get corrected to secure the old home and what to expect monetarily to accomplish that…

He did and was very reassuring…he gave me several names of people he would trust to help straighten out my crooked house…(which makes me the crooked little woman without a little crooked cat… I reckon.)

I took a deep breath and called his friend and since that phone call I have felt like the roller coaster rider at the top of the hill…hanging on for dear life. They started immediately…

Two new porch columns went up yesterday (one was rotted at the bottom)…the cracked cement porch floor must be busted up and replaced with new cement….some of the windows are beyond repair… there is lots of water damaged trim work which must be replaced and then, of course, the new roof. Deep breath!

Good-bye annuity…hello new clean, outside exterior with new wood, windows,  roof…and porch….at least I know, now, that the roof won’t fall in on my head.

When we save for a rainy day….it is just a matter of time before the rainy day will find us…it will rain all kinds of problems…and as we all know, when it rains it really pours most times.

To quote Betsy, however…”It’s all good”…Don’t we  love to dream that we can sit back and watch our savings grow without ever touching it …as if it is sitting in some sterile vault… free from problems? *There’s a real obstacle with this visualization…a little thing called “LIFE” gets in the way.

I will always have my Happy Room to make me smile….but now my house will be called “Boo’s Blessings” because Mandy noticed something critical in the nick of time, Paul helped me get a big picture of all the work needed, time was made available for the workers to start earlier than predicted, and I am lucky enough to have some savings from all those years of teaching.

So until tomorrow….When we come to the realization that our homes are just temporary abodes until we go to live with God…it finally dawns on us that God is our Home…no matter what or where  it is.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

  • Guess who God sent to me Friday evening….Anne! She arrived at my door with two hamburgers which we ate with a glass of wine…quite good actually! And then Anne helped me untangle the vines of morning glories and moon flower vines from off the Bradford Tree…transferring them to the fence on the side of the garden in the back yard.

While working on the dismantlement we  discovered that Friday night would have been the night…we counted almost a dozen moon flower buds …just waiting to pop open…(though they were suffering from a temporary shock over the move…so I am not sure what will happen to the blooms…time will tell.)

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Look at the last photo’s passion plant’s vine tendril forming the sacred spiral of life. Amazing!

After dark Friday night….I took my camera and, to my delight, discovered  some buds were blooming…even after two uprooting “moves” from the porch to the tree to the fence.

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Yesterday was Eva Cate and Boo Boo (Back to School) Day….I picked her up to show her what was happening with the house and to let her pick out something for school.


On the way to Summerville we had the most interesting conversation about God…I pretended to be a reporter and interview her… finally I asked her what was the one thing she wanted people to know about God….an Eva Cate Orignal:

“God loves us everyone ….mean people, selfish people…it doesn’t matter…He loves us so we must always stay kind in our heart “no matter what.” (NO matter what is her newest expression)

We stopped by the cemetery yesterday at Poppy and Dee Dee’s grave sites…Eva Cate loved that their grave marker was in the shape of a heart…that must have prompted her to suddenly lean over and kiss each one…I barely had time to  catch it with my camera.




About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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4 Responses to The Way It Was….

  1. Jo Dufford says:

    Guess your on-going non-planned projects really fit the description of “When it rains, it pours.” I will say an extra prayer for you. I know compared to the important things in life these are small bumps in the road, but they surely are hills as far as day to day life goes. Hang in there, and soon these things will be just memories in which you can continue finding blessings. Glad Paul came to your rescue. He is a good man.

  2. Becky Dingle says:

    Paul is the best…a good friend forever! I am no doubt the most blessed of women…I know it…I feel it and I thank God for it! Thank you Jo for your moral support…we have all been there. Life without problems is non-existent.

  3. Gin-gEdwards says:

    You are right…Paul is the best and you definitely can trust him. Boy, you are having a lot done. I can’t wait to see it. Eva Cate has grown so much. I wanted to see if you got my text. I have tried to call but it goes straight to voice mail. I hope to get there soon. I spent 2 days in the hospital this week, but hopefully will feel better soon. Love you.

  4. Becky Dingle says:

    I went back and checked my iphone…no text showed up from you….Hospital…what is going on?

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