Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Austin surely rules.

In the two weeks we have had Austin in our lives, he has truly taken us to heart. From the five pound pup we brought home to now 12 pounds, he seems to grow in our hearts as the Grinch's heart grew in the movie.

The best and most blessed thing is that he's not only the little spirit that brought life back into my heart but also John's. I find him as attentive and loving to Austin as I am.

I came down with a dreaded cold, mostly due to working in retail. This means that John is truly the get up and take him out detail. He hasn't complained or given that dreaded big sigh that comes with....way too much work this Austin. So as I sniff my way to bed after work, he and Austin seem to go on with the daily work of training Austin to be the best dog ever.

I know now that I can release Timber's spirit and remember her with love, not mourning her loss. I am so loved and blessed.

This was the best event in 2010.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Almost Gone....

Gingerbread cookies are by far my favorite Christmas cookies. I make a huge batch every year and by Christmas I have shared some and eaten most. There is only a small group of ginger cookie lovers, but that's ok with me. Unlike my husbands love for sugar cookie, mine last longer due to less people loving them.

Sometimes you just have to be different and that often pays off. For me this gingerbread cookie love affair is probably made bigger in my head because I only make them once a year. I think this is a great lesson for life. When you wait for something it makes it very special.

Merry Christmas to all my followers and I hope there is something special this year in your life.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Austin is home.

First I must say that she is a he. Austin is a Cartahoula Leopard mix dog. We adapted him yesterday from the Greenville Humane Society.

Yesterday when John and I left for the adventure of 2010 we rode quietly. I'm sure we were both thinking that we had better be sure we were ready. I knew I was and yet I was just a little nervous. We never, ever, return a dog. The moment I put it in my arms, it was family.

Pulling up to the Humane Society was something I had felt before but only years ago; excitement. I held back the tears because I didn't know if Austin was present. As we walked the isle down to the puppy room, I worked so hard at not crying. Once we entered, this little spirit reached out to John, I wanted to view others, but every time I looked back, this little heart had stold mine.

Austin was coming home. With no more experience in his life than two and a half months old, he knew the heart strings to pull. We are once again blessed with a even tempered dog. The question is what was he mixed with and how big he is going to get. But once in love, that all seems unimportant.

What a great Christmas gift from such a great guy.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Austin is coming home.

This morning John said that he wanted to give me a new spirit, puppy. And was I willing to adopt a homeless puppy. I started to cry and I haven't stopped. Yes, I said. Was I dreaming, would I wake up as in other dreams and find it not real. I don't know but if this is a dream...I plan to stay here for a while.

You all know how hard this has been. But I wanted to make sure that John wanted it as much as I did. Or at least want it a little. See having a dog is a full time job in the beginning and both parties have to be willing to hide socks, find paper chewed up and the many pleasures a puppy will bring.

When John and I are on the same page, the puppy will have the best world ever. And now Austin will be coming home. I don't know who she is or what she is, but I know she is going to steal my heart when I see her.

No picture today. No picture needed.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I am in shock.....

I wanted all the good people to know that there are bad people who are now training kids to be bad. Last night during work a manager came to me with a look I hadn't seen before. She stated that a customer had come to her, whispered in her ear that he had seen a woman with child, outside the store. He hesitated than continued. He said that the mother pulled the pants down the child's legs and he pooed in front of the doors. The child preceded to piddle.

Now I know these words are simple but they hurt me to write them. What would make a person do that, we have a restroom. We are as nice as we can be and we ask for people to write surveys. This is so unbelievable that I find myself shaking my head and denying my writing. But when a person has to clean up someone else's poo. You find it sickening.

There are not morals to this story, but wanted people to know things like this happen and hurt the workers, not the store. See the store didn't clean it up, the nice manager, that has treated me with extra kindness was the clean up crew.


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Christmas Retail Story

I was thinking about the retail world and the stories that are often passed between people working the floor in a store. I have taken many of breaks with people that are working hard to keep the store looking stress free. The salesperson is under a lot of pressure to keep things straight and folded. The fact that people can pick up an item and after deciding they don't want it, just lay it down somewhere, without thought of the person who has to put it back along with a hundred other items, saddens me. Now many think that people are there to serve them. That's not true. We are there to make their shopping experience wonderful. We work hard keeping the stock replenished and at the same time greeting and helping others get that stress free shopping they want. We are not there to SERVE YOU.

But really this isn't the depth of my thoughts, I wanted to thank those who bend over to pick up an item that fell off the shelf even when they didn't do it. Or leave an item on the hook until they decide what they want. Or bring it back to the department and leave it hanging close to the original home of the garment. These people are never thanked because we spend so much time picking up after others. So today I want those who do care and know we are working hard; to realize we do notice them and thank God for them. Otherwise we would become hard at heart and wouldn't that be a sad statement for such a wonderful time of the year.

Merry Christmas Shopping to all.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

A gallon of paint and patients.

I am always asked if I love to paint. My answer is... I love the end product, not the process. Picking the colors is probably the most fun. I think it goes back to my artist background. Once painted the product is either what I expected or not. And yet I love the ending regardless of the final effect.

This is my living room. You can see the lack of color made the room very cool and unwelcoming. This was the only thing that had to change fast. So in January the painting took place. Hope you can appreciate the change like I did.
I plan to paint the remainder walls a dark taupe when all my colors are other rooms are finished. I decided to wait because of the creative construction of this house. More photos to come.

What a gallon of paint won't do.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

April seems so long ago.

Most of my followers know that I like to think about how I am doing twice a year. Once on my birthday in April and again on Thanksgiving. I do this to keep me in check. Have I grown in love, faith, and tolerance? Am I coping with loss and examining my feelings?

I am still confused at the hurt I carry with the loss of Timber my English Setter. I had to think it through and often cried my way through it. She was the best of the best, but I had lost loved pets before. Was it because we had been so close. Even now as I write tears come to my eyes.

I decided that it was her spirit I missed, that something under my feet. That need for me to take care of and knowing she would be expecting me at the end of the day. I find this loss intolerable. But learning and trying not to bring in another spirit for reasons I can't go into today are still looming in my everyday thoughts.

As for everything else, it seems that life has been a growth and not a decline. For this I thank God. I also realized today, that it's me, I must take care of. I have always been passionate to others, their needs and what they think. This often leads to me compromising on issues that maybe I should think through. Maybe the phrase "To Thine Self Be True" applies to me more today than at any other time in my life.

I want others, like my husband to say things like. I think we need. Instead of me bringing to a heated discussion before he relents and what is best for you! OUCH. But maybe life isn't suppose to be that way.

So my lesson is for the next few months...To Thine Self Be True. And yet stay passionate to others. I will let you know how that went.

God Bless those traveling through my little blog world.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Monday, November 22, 2010

Paint by number...not.

I decided to get a little painting done over the last week. I usually paint before I place my furniture in the room for the first time. However, since my husband was tasked to buy a house without my help. I decided to take my time on painting.

The dining room is one of the rooms I look at when sitting in the living room. So of course I had to do it next. I hope you enjoy the difference, paint is very inexpensive and yet does wonders for a room.

Have a great day everyone and God Bless

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Boo'd and loving it.

I know this is a little late but I love the story. Our neighbor, Helen and Steve, boo'ed us. This consisted of a pumpkin, a sign for the window saying we were boo'ed, and instructions to boo.

I laughed when I saw the pumpkins, because I had been making an issue of placing a pumpkin on our steps. I had put my foot down because of two things, hot. I thought our pumpkin would start melting and hence make one big mess. Second....not yet October 1st.

Steve and Helen, decided to boo us on October 1st. They of course had to place the pumpkin on our steps after midnight. That's what they did. I saw Steve, in my minds eye, creeping up the steps like the Grinch that stole Christmas, but with leaving something instead of taking something. Was he worried we would hear him, actually he never got busted.

I than saw the instructions and started my plan to boo someone else. After all was said and done we actually saw the "we've been boo'ed" sign hanging in 14 windows. What fun. I can't wait to see what will happen next year.

As always, God Bless and remember you don't have to do much to make a difference.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I was thinking.

Sometimes you just have to eat cake, cake and more cake. I really hate the talk about too much sugar in our diets. Listen. What is life without a little or a lot of sugar?

Throughout our lives things are taken away from us. Parties all night long, too much drinking, and fatting food. Than swearing, which I really didn't like in the first place. Sometimes just being mean; which many people do deserve a good tongue lashing from time to time.

So now they want us to give up sugar. Well once again I must protest. I love cake, cookies and other sugar laddened things, and I forgot to mention chocolate. So this is my promise, I plan to eat and be merry. Before you think that's my only food group intake, I plan to balance it out with fruits and veggies.

So there, I said it. Freedom at last from THOSE people who say I must be told for my own good, what to eat. I am a big girl, not big in size, but big in brains. So don't tread on my cake...that's all I'm saying.

Have a great day and God Bless.

Friday, November 12, 2010

When Fun Rules.

The family has a Christmas party every year. Over the years we have thrown, what we consider, theme parties. This one year we dressed like our nationality. Even though others considered us silly for dressing up, we had more fun than the effort it took to come up with the costumes. By the way the outlaws, who are the in-laws, were also in full dress. Good sports all.

We found that everyone, had so much fun seeing us like the characters we picked, that the party was so much more colorful. Over the years, our nieces and nephews have great memories of the, so called, silly aunts and uncles. And I might add respected for our self confidence in wearing and maybe having more fun for our age.

What I am trying to say is having fun at any age, is what makes the family great. We can laugh at each other and still be respected. Because, we do everything with dignity. Something our parents taught us.

As always, thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Once a bridesmaid...six times more a bridesmaid.

Good Morning...I once said that the first time I had to appear in a wedding, that was going to be my last. But being part of a large family, proved impossible to get my wish. Maybe I was a little cute due to the fact that they kept asking, or should I say telling me, that I was going to be in the next wedding.

I chose this picture to show how young and pretty we all were. I framed my sister and me to show you one thing I have talked about before. Her beauty, unlike my complaining about it, I was truly proud of her. In fact I wanted to be like her. I have to say that looking at the old pictures just proved that maybe I was a little hard on myself. Giving the fact that she was older, had a job, and by the way had a lot more taste than I did.

But this is my point. Someone to look up to isn't all bad. Even when we find the person way to hard to measure up to. But because of her and time, she was and is, a great role model. I didn't become her, why, because I am me. And in the end, I'm loving this beautiful sister. When we stand together we are equal in mind and love for each other and that is the best part of sisters.

God Bless all those around me and visit my little blog.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

I feel so small...

and that's ok, don't worry about tomorrow...God is already there. Sunday morning thoughts.

Have a wonderful day.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Four of Us.

When I first saw this picture at a very young age, I thought to myself..."great no brothers" it was just the four of us. The thought that we were given the opportunity to have our picture taken with Mom and Dad alone was such a coo.

As years went on and Doreen became more and more beautiful and I got more and more gawky, I noticed that at this one time in life, I was as cute as her. Little did I know that me growing out of gawkiness, and I did, would open a new world of beauty.

This is just a start to my journey with a beautiful sister. As I write, you will either find humor in my travel or truly understand. She is not just beautiful on the outside and my journey opened me up to the person I love and call sister.

God Bless my Family and Friends

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Witch is true?

A few years ago, for a red hat party, I actually dressed up as a witch, I even painted my face. The look was...well shall I say, interesting.

The best part is that I often think to myself...witch am I? Someone true to my beliefs or that person dressed up in the uniform of the dark. Do I look at everything and give it proper thought before making judgement.

In today's society, they want you to be PC proper. I have decided that it's important to take a stand. To be an individual, to stand up and be counted. If that makes me a witch, so be it. But one thing I know, I am true to my belief and stand by them. I am not angry, threading, or down right mean. I live my days being the best person I can be. I also, don't pick fights.
So, everyone who knows me can make the determination of what they believe I am. For me, witch or not, I am me.

Happy Halloween to those who stop in and visit my little blog.

Friday, October 29, 2010

After the party.

I remember dad working hard. But there was another side of dad that I do remember, his cigars. Mostly because mom complained about them. Dad loved to dance, some drinking, playing cards and enjoying friends. He also loved a cigar at the end of the day. I don't know when he started smoking cigars or how many he smoked, but it seems a fixture in his life.

He was a man of little needs. When it came to gift giving events it was always a mystery what to buy him. He was never impressed with material things, but the thought behind the gift was what he liked. So often in his older years we would give him a bottle of Five Star Brandy or a box of cigars. Even mom gave him cigars after a while. I know what you're thinking....she hated him smoking cigars.

This is where the story gets good. One year at Christmas, dad opened his present to find again, a box of cigars. It was from mom and there on dad's face was a smirk and his eyes seems to shimmer. It stopped the gift opening because this was unlike dad.

When ask what was happening, he smiled and said...I stopped smoking months ago. Everyone broke out laughing and mom, who had complained about his smoking, truly melted into the chair in which she was sitting.

As a family we laughed at this story for years. What fun memories to remember and share.

God Bless those who travel with me through my memories.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Picture Me Proud.

When I came upon this one, I just had to smile. Don't the boys look good, all decked in their suits and seeing only the many possibilities facing them.

Of course, I don't remember them looking like this. They were just my brothers. Marv, who you saw in one of my last story and my brother Bob to the right look confident. The important part is that they were, my family projected confidence and resolve.

Dad and Mom taught us well. The possibilities are endless. Unlike today, we were told we had to work hard and we would earn our reward. Not only in the work place but in our family and in our faith.

They learned well from Mom and Dad and today they don't have to project confidence, they are confident. Not only in business but in family and faith. It's great to be surrounded by good people. I am blessed.


Saturday, October 23, 2010

Let's move on.

That's what we did. I truly didn't understand what it meant and it was obvious that I didn't know anything when I left the farm. As far as I could see on the farm it was ours. In town it was a totally different subject. I could have never known what I was going to experience. I was ready.

My two brothers were in charge of me when we got to town. Waite Park at the time was very small, and from my Aunt Marie's to our new house, was only three blocks away. My brothers were riding two wheeler bikes and me, well, lets say it was a very small three wheeler. I was so proud of it.

On the way over, they just happened to lose me. Getting me to our new home wasn't a very important mission in their minds. The story goes that the police brought me home. What a great place, people who can give you a ride home, especially when I didn't know where I lived. We didn't have these guys on the farm. I'm sure I talked all the way home, how I got there is really a mystery because I hadn't been there before.

The home was only a basement home, that meant the top floor was not built yet. You don't see them these days. Anyway, this is what the house looked like after my parents built the top floor. It was wonderful and full of love.

God Bless those who travel through my little blog.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

She was beautiful....

I have decided that this picture, of all pictures, shows me, what mom really looked like most of my life. As a child and young adult I really didn't spend time looking at her. I was self centered, I was growing up, I was going to be an artist. It's time you spend becoming someone. I don't think that I'm any different from anyone else. I'm human, and human is not always a complement.

In this picture I see a woman, that has given birth to nine children and lost one soon after birth. I see someone who should look tired and overworked. And yet here she is taking time with the youngest, me. I never had children, and in my late twenties, mom looked at me and ask if I was going to have children. I told her that I didn't think so. She said that if she was me, NOW...she wouldn't have had any.

This surprised me, she was a very good mother. Without a moment of silence, she stated something that made my heart beat fast. In soft words, and a warm smile, she stated that luckily God didn't know this and gave her not only beautiful children but the chance to make a difference. Oh my....what was I to say. So, as a good daughter, I just admired her.

I know at times that I made a mistake, also knowing if I would have had a child, God would have helped me to be as good a mother. Because she was my corner stone I could have made a difference also.

God Bless those who travel through my little world called Balsam Ponds By Design.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I Tried didn't work.

I alluded to the first time I remember taking a big stand against something. The first time I did it when appearance was at stake was the wedding of the oldest brother. They wanted me to be the flower girl. All I knew was I didn't like the idea. Because I would have to stand next to a boy. Now, after six brothers and their friends I figured I had had enough boys.

Once again I used the NO word when I didn't have a choice. I don't remember much about this whole event; I do remember finally getting put into the dress and handed this basket. Ok, it didn't hurt much yet. But at the church came this guy with a camera. This was not happening. I decided that throwing my basket might do it. Didn't work. So the first picture is what the world saw.
The second photo is what we really thought about this whole thing. His face says it all.

I was a good girl the rest of the day. Maybe being in the lime light wasn't so bad. Especially when I realized all I had to do was smile and walk next to that boy. But I was hoping this would end it. Little did I know.

God Bless those who smile at my life events.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

When a baby becomes an Aunt

When I was five, I became an aunt to my oldest brothers new addition. I told mom that I was not going to be an aunt again. I felt saying it added a measure of truth to life. At five I was wrong again. I also didn't know that Kevin was going to warm my heart and for the first time I was feeling possessive.

Kevin was small and surely needed me to protect him. Who else better than me, with my vast knowledge of life. Now love for me was something new. I felt loved and knew that even if my brothers and sister teased me, they loved me. But at age five, I didn't really know what love was. Kevin opened a new door for me.

Don't get me wrong, I was still standing akimbo on my demand that this was going to be the last. I should have known that wouldn't work. Mostly because I had only a year or some before said I would never be in a wedding again. The same brother. He was truly becoming a problem.

After many years Kevin still owns a part of my heart. And when I think of him, I think of him as my little brother. Nice change of pace over being the youngest.

The moral of this story is...sometimes don't say never again, when you receive something so special as Kevin in your life.

God Bless those who travel through my little world called Balsam Ponds by Design

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Mystery Memories

Being the baby of a family of eight, has more dimension than you can imagine. I am 20 years younger than the oldest. I am six years younger than the closet brother. So, growing up in my family was a memory mystery.
My days were filled with being alone with mom and dad. But these other members of the family came and went. I had five great years on our family farm. I was five when we left and I have to say the memories were some of my best. Maybe because all my brothers and my sister traveled through the house either coming from a day at school or from the Twin Cities with girlfriends or on motor cycles.
It was so normal. I remember cookie baking with mom, my aunt Marie coming for supper and helping with baking at Christmas. I remember the time my brother came home from the Service all decked in their uniforms and the celebration was so breath taking.
The funny thing is that now it sounds as though my memories are just a glimpse of positive times. I really don't care, mostly because I felt so normal. I know our life was not a bed of roses, but guess what, I am glad that there was enough love round me to make me feel as though the world was truly whole and we loved each other.
I remember good days and isn't that what life is about. Taking the good and making it better. Thanks to my family for those warm feelings. By the way this is my brother Marv. What a stud muffin he was. But even though he is a good looker, he is still the best guy ever.


Monday, October 11, 2010

The Family as I know it...

I spent a week with my sister and realized how blessed I am to have this family. I decided to do a series of posts about the family as I know it. My first one is below.


This was the last picture taken when the family was whole. At the time, it seemed just like one more picture. All of us smiled, or what we call grin and bare it. But now that I look back I realize that we were lucky to have someone to request a group picture.

The loss of a father, than brother, brought us together again and again to talk over memories and remember the loss of these two loving ones. But we knew in our hearts that with time more would go home to God. Making time together even more valuable. Our next loss was our mother. At 91 she was by all means the the glue that keep us together. We would find that she had given us what we needed to keep the family strong.

I knew she was not only the glue but my corner stone that I live my life by. My dad gave me my work ethic and moral base. He never said bad about anyone. Only when we, the kids, got out of control would he step forward and shut us down. The two of them together, were a force to recon with. Strong, constant, and fair. As we grew older, we knew it was a lot to live up to, but isn't that the point, living up to who goes before you. In our case we had something wonderful to live up too and I thank them everyday.

God Bless those who try to be the best parents, and less the friends. When we got older we become their friends but always respected them as parents.


Sunday, September 26, 2010

And the work begins.

I think I showed you how John does his layout, with grass killer. And I might add it works well. But when he starts digging the fun begins. The shapes come to life, and we look like a well planned mole is engaged and working randomly throughout the yard. But there really is a plan.

The ground here in South Carolina is red, no it's not red clay, it's ground. But one thing is it's as hard as rock. So the process is slow, when doing it with a small tiller.

But now back to why John has this work the many areas of the yard at the same time. We call it recycling. We move dirt from one side of the yard to the other. From the square area, that will have two chase lounges for sitting in the sun, produced a lot of ground that we moved behind the grill. And so on and so on. The layers going back to the fence are for flowers. On the top row where the brown bark is showing lies the ivy. Oh ya, the hole with the frogs is going to be a pond. With the stream running from behind the sunning area. Wow, it seems so simple when I say it and long in the tooth when written.

More pictures to come. But for this week we are lucky to have my sister and brother-in-law with us and plan to show them the wonders of South Carolina.

God Bless all those who travel through my little world called Balsam Ponds By Design.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Send love for pet loss.

Yesterday I spent time designing a dog sympathy card, while John was out in the back digging more holes. Tomorrow I am going to post an updated picture of the work going on in the back yard. However, it's a long way from done.

But today is sympathy card day. I am proud of this piece, mostly because often while designing, I loose my way and find myself wondering how the card will be finished. The point is always the finishing mark on each card.

The main piece here are the hearts. One heart didn't do it. After about an hour and may heart tries, I did two hearts and it made the card. Just thought you would like to know even creative people get stumped. But the will to create a great card always wins and I never quit.

Have a great weekend

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Thoughts for today.

I know that fear of the future freezes your daily activities and often you only do what you have to. But really this is the time you should surround yourself in things that take your mind off your fears.

Easier said then done. Even though I was busy, I found myself drug back into my thoughts. And even though I wanted to write a blog, I feared that what I did fear would come true if I wrote it and sent it into the blog world.

Silly that I couldn't trust you with my inner fears. I am now sorry for that, you followers have always given me the space I need to say what I need and than smile when I am back to smiling myself.

I can tell you that there is a smile back on my face. John is coming around with his health and we are still working out what went wrong. And guess what the back yard is taking shape. Yes, due to John's ability to dig and move ground. He is back and so am I.

God Bless those who travel through my little world here on Blogspot.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

You warm my heart.

I don't think words are always needed when warm wishes are given so freely from all my friends here on the blog. Today we went to the heart doctor. His words were kind and clear. John's heart was not in trouble and his lungs were clear. This still doesn't answer the question of his breathing but the doctor is sending us to lung doctor and maybe it has more to do with allergies than anything else. We pray that will be the answer. He has been better since the humidity went down and that is also a good sign.
I thank you for the prayers and thoughts. Prayer to me is so powerful and understand that it's not always the answer you want but an answer you can deal with.
And we have gotten the answers that give us the next step. But learning his heart is strong and lungs are operating as they should for a younger man means we have learned to live and live better the last 12 years.
So in closing God is great, and those who believe are powerful.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Old Birds have to Celebrate too.

What's more fun than giving your friend something to laugh at? I also love the use of fall colors. I don't have a lot to say due to my husbands health and not knowing what it is yet but I thought you would love this card.

God Bless those who visit my little world

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

When did it happen?

When did we look at each other and know what was lurking in each others head. What not to say, what to avoid and when to speak up? When was it that I found myself in him and him in me? When does it occur to you that you could lose the one you love?

For me, the relationship with John has slowly grown and with every breath I take he takes one with me. It's not only comfortable but loving. Is it boring? Sometimes it occurs to me that we have little to talk about, but on the other hand it's wonderful. Sitting on the porch, having ice tea and we are so comfortable with each other. We can shut the world out or we can talk about it. It's up to us at the moment.

I haven't been writing much lately because of health issues for my husband. John has had heart issues for years. And right off the bat we decided his heart had taken a down swing and we would do what was needed. That wasn't the issue. And unfortunately we still don't know. It's really hard on a strong man with vitality and than within weeks he losses some of that strength. We can't deal with something we don't know where it is in his body or what it is.

Prayer has been my outlet and I have to say, answers come from the world around you if you listen. That's what prayer gives open mind. Maybe not answers but thoughts and maybe thoughts will lead to answers. John and I are now once again filled with hope that we will find the answers and move on.

God Bless those who travel through this little blog.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I love this one.

With all the unsettled problems in our nation, it's hard to spend money. Especially on the little things. This is my attempted to design a less complicated card, that also cost less. This card sells for $1.99 each. I think it's one of my favorite. Still a lot of design work, but not as much product. Hope you enjoy. I plan to post on Etsy soon.

As always bless those who wander through my little blog.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Halloween Already?

Not for most of the country, but for a graphic designer making designs for her up and coming greeting card sales, it has started. I wanted you to see my first one for 2010.

What do you think, is it a keeper. I say I can even do better.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Back Yard Surprise

I have to say, that in all the years in Minnesota, this is the largest tomato plant I have ever grown. The funny thing is that in the three weeks we were gone, this plant doubled itself and was ready to take over the world.

I must say that when I was new at gardening, I did us Turf Builder from Scott's on my tomato plants and as many of you know, there wasn't a tomato to be found. never did something that stupid. The greenhouse loved my question about not having tomatoes. He was nice and simply explained my mistake. Thank goodness, I felt dumb enough without the snicker.

Have a great day.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

It's time to go home.

John and I were ready to go home. We drug our suitcases to the car, kissed our loved ones goodbye and home we went. Memories to store and revisit along the way.

Every stop during the three weeks made us that more appreciative of our family and friends. But knowing it was time made our hearts jump. The ride home was wonderful. Talking about the arrival and all we had to do. Sleep in our own bed, walk around in our underwear, and fall asleep whenever we wanted.

We were excited to drive into our driveway, everything at our home was as we left it. John and I thanked God for our safe passage.


Friday, August 20, 2010

Selfish Pool Owner

Staying with Eli, and of course his owner was the last stop on a busy vacation. By then we were truly brain dead and found ourselves watching what was going on and not participating.

However, the pool party turned out to be for the owner of the pool only. Eli was sure to take up the complete pool and regretted it not.

And he and his friend also had their way with the chicken barbecue. Maybe forgivable due to the dog kisses and attention. Even if it was wet. Smile.

Have a great day to all the dog lovers.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Sweet Gift

While in Northern Minnesota, we saw John's ex partner and my dear friend. Funny how these two things occur in one person. Over the last few years Brandy and I have become best friends and I have grown to love her two children, who I write about here off and on. Breakfast was the best way to see them so we met at cafe in Emily.

During breakfast, Cordaye told me she had a new piece of artwork for me. I told her that the card they send me was still on my wall. Should I replace it. Wolfgang sprang into action, stating that he felt I could add it to my wall. Funny thing was that he didn't have anything to do with the new piece of artwork and he didn't want me to take down the card that both made for me.

When I got home I put the artwork above the card and now they are both have a special place on my wall and in my heart.


Monday, August 16, 2010

Light the the wine.

A day after the steak fry we drove to Northern Minnesota to visit friends we missed. It was by no means uneventful. The day went so fast and visiting friends was heart warming. We were blessed with an invitation to spend the night with my once bosses. Tucked in the woods, looking over a lake and their kids that treated us like family was by all means enjoyable.

The evening was full of laughs and a few glasses of wine. OK, one more than a few. We sat outside till it became chilly, yes I said chilly. We moved downstairs to a beautiful fire in the fireplace. The popcorn was popped, the wine was chilled and conversation was warm. For you southerners we did have the patio doors open all the way. For fresh air of course.

Summer in Northern Minnesota is by far the most beautiful place to be. Warm days, cool nights and open windows to sleep by.

Thanks to Joe and Kristi for their friendship. We are truly blessed.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Annual Steak Fry

We had the best day ever, temperature, sun and family. There was the usual participants and another brother and sister-in-law that were a fun and welcome addition. We laughed, drank wine and laughed.

We also celebrated two anniversaries. Each have responsibility to bring a delightful addition to the steak, potato salad made by the best potato salad maker in all of Minnesota, a fruit salad, the usual great bread and of course my favorite, cake.

After hours of talking and enjoying the family, it was to end the night with knowing we said it all and hugged them all.
Life is too short not to have fun with the ones you love. Even when they are family.
God Bless those who make me smile.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Clearlake, Minnesota B&B

After John got home from fishing, life got just a little more hectic and fun. No more sitting around and reading, it was time to socialize to the max. We traveled only about five miles to the second youngest in our family.

A house nestled in the woods, with a deck that spans the back and a gazebo tucked further into the woods. What a place to think and be reminded of how blessed we are to have such a peaceful life. Outside of the gazebo is this incredible pond, which adds the background trickle to reading or visiting. My brother is not only creative in landscaping but also in the wood products he sells on my Etsy site.

This was also going to be the scene of the, "Steak Fry" but that the next entry. For this day, the relaxation was joined by my sister and brother in law for a pre-party visit. Visiting family is always tiring because we have so much to talk about and listen too. But being tired was a small price to pay for the memories.


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Boys come home.

As always, the boys returned with sore hands and great spirits. Fishing is a marathon for them. They have seven days of fishing. They fish from 6:30 to 5:00 and seem to enjoy every hour.

The first time they went, when they got home, I suggested having fish for supper in honor of their catch. John just looked at me and said, no way, that's not going to happen. I didn't think that with fishing they ate fish every day for lunch.

John's fish measured 41 1/2 inches. He was proud but didn't win the big fish award. Another guy caught a 42 inch northern. By the way the fish was a catch and release. He is still swimming and I can bet he's staying away from those lures.

God Bless all who visit me here.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Waiting for the boys.

I must say, that the garden intrigued me. So while waiting for the fisherman to return I took more pictures of the plants that graced the beautiful gardens. So today is picture day. I hope you enjoy it.

God bless those who travel through my little blog.


Monday, August 9, 2010

Tears on Vacation

The week John was gone was truly hard on me. Don't get me wrong, I have been without him for a week before, many times. However, this was the first time I not only missed him but also Timber. I didn't realize how many times I looked in the back seat to see what she was up too, or waking up and seeing if I could sneak to the bathroom and get back before she knew I was up.

Let me tell you, it never fails to surprise me that at 58 years old I am having a hard time getting used to her being gone. I might add that nothing seems worth it, the lack of hair balls rolling around the house, the lack of responsibilty, or the nose prints on the windows. I miss the unconditional love and the naps in my chair with her snuggled in my lap and making me stay there because she is sound a sleep.

Vacation just highlighted my need for a little spirit that is dependent on me, who loves me and doesn't let me down with hurtful words and actions. Pets are truly God's gifts.


Sunday, August 8, 2010

My Camera and Me.

After the boys left for Canada, my camera and my love for flowers took over. My brother and sister-in-law's gardens are beautiful. Even though it's July, the colors were spectacular. I couldn't get a picture of the whole gardens because they were so vast. But trust me they were beautiful.

I wondered through the gardens and tried to capture the best of their best. I hope you love the picture. It's a great way to show the wonders of God and his love.

Have a great day to all and God bless.