Monday, November 28, 2016

Trimming the Tree

The day after Thanksgiving we start decorating for Christmas. This is a day Megan and I anticipate. Afterall we are entering the most wonderful time of the year!
We started the day off with our traditional breakfast of Rudolph pancakes. Then the fun began. 
The tree was up and then we fluffed out all of the branches. I spent lots of time stringing on the lights. I used at least 14 strands of lights. I think lights make the tree. 
Then it was time to pull out the ornaments. 
I love this as it is a trip down memory lane. Ornaments that bring back special memories of vacations, highlights such as Chuck's time in the service and of course treasures made my little hands. 
Once the star is on then it is complete! 
We were watching the lighting ceremony for what our city boast as "the world's largest Christmas tree" and I looked over and saw this. 
There is nothing like seeing Christmas through the eyes of a child.  

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving

That pretty much sums up how I feel about life. I am thankful, grateful and certainly blessed! Life is sometimes hard and far from perfect, but I am blessed to called this life mine. 

Happy Thanksgiving! 


Sunday, November 20, 2016

Playing Catch Up

Last week I felt like I was barely home. That has me feeling like I am playing catch up. I was busy running errands and taking my mom (who doesn't drive) out for a little shopping. Then we had an unexpected meeting called at Megan's school on Tuesday evening. 

Sadly her teacher is retiring. This leaves things uncertain as she teaches a combined 5th/6th grade class. It is a small school and they are looking at enrollment numbers for next year to determine what to do. It takes a special teacher to be able to run a combined class. It really stinks as we are in limbo as to what will happen next year. We are pretty sure we know what plan B will be if her school doesn't offer 6th grade. 

Wednesday I planned to stay home. I had dropped Megan off and had just finished breakfast when I received a call for a doctors office. Chuck's step dad was having a minor procedure to remove some skin cancer from his nose and my mother-in-law started to feel ill. Long story short I had to take her to the ER for elevated blood pressure and tightness in her chest. Thankfully they didn't find any issue. I think it is stress as she was worried about Mike and has been under stress at work with working on a new budget. We all know how hard it is to create a budget when there isn't enough money. ;) 

That evening we meet Chuck at the mechanic. He dropped off his truck and then we went to borrow a vehicle from my brother-in-law. We grabbed something to eat at Cracker Barrel and then dropped in to see my in-laws. Chuck didn't come to the ER and wanted to see his mom. 

Thursday I was again with my parents for most of the day. I honestly can't remember what we had to do that day. That evening we meet Chuck at my parents so he could drop off the borrowed vehicle. Then we went to pick up his truck. It was a killer paying for the repair. Thankful for the emergency fund and for getting multiple quotes. The original quote from the place that diagnosed the issue was $350 more then what we paid for the repair. Dinner was quick and then it was out the door again for a fundraiser. They are raising money to reduce the cost of going to camp in the Spring. 

I was so happy to see Friday come. It was a normal day. Whew! Saturday Chuck worked and Megan and I worked on getting our home in order. I spent some time deep cleaning the kitchen. 
Things always look worse before they look better when you are deep cleaning. 
Yup, those are Christmas lights. Chuck ended up helping me finish things up and suggested we go ahead and put them up. I turned them on to grab this picture but will leave them off until after Thanksgiving. 

Cleaning the kitchen is one thing off of my list. Tomorrow I plan to clean the bathroom, living room and sampoo carpets. I am looking forward to a few days of quiet and playing catch up is on my agenda.

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!


Friday, November 18, 2016

Dear November

Dear November,
You have been so good to me this year. Your warm, sunny days are a balm to my soul. I thank you for the extended days of a summer feel.
 It has been my pleasure to sit out in the warmth and watch the leaves circle to the ground. The smell and the crisp crunch is distinctive to your month. 

 As the trees become bare it is a joy to peek at the hidden treasure. I see the squirrels have been busy with fluffing their nest for the cold to come. 

 The early sunset makes the time of light all that more precious.

  Your cool mornings and moments of frost and freeze let me know that the time is fleeting. Dear November, thank you for your wonderful gift this year. 
With love,
My friends, what a gift it has been. Today it will be 72* here. All of that will end as we settle in for the evening. A cold front is moving in and tomorrow the forecast is for a high of 42* with a wintry mix. The child in me wants to stomp my feet and say "no, no, no!" The adult in me knows that the extended warmth in November has truly been a gift. A gift that I am grateful for.

It has been some kind of week around here. We'll catch up on all the happenings next week. For today I plan to spend time soaking up as much of the beauty and warmth as I can.

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!


Sunday, November 13, 2016

Weekend Stuff

I don't usually talk politics nor do I intent to really start.  All I will say is that I had a mini melt down on social media last week and had to remind folks that if you say you are a Christian, then you need to act like a Christian. I have seen behavior from people from both political sides that left me upset with my fellow Americans.

My grandmother had a saying about troublesome things "the more you stir the pot, the more it stinks." I am sad to say that although well intended, I might have stirred the pot a little. I know better.

Unfortunately I am unable to step away from social media completely. I know that I mentioned working for a realtor. I am doing marketing for him and part of that job is maintaining his social media accounts.

I plan to step away as much as I can and focus on what is important to me. I will be spending time in prayer, taking care of my home and loving my family. Some might say I am burying my head in the sand and quite frankly I am okay with that. My little world makes me happy!

Speaking of my little world, lets see what has been happening around here.
I have been taking luke warm to cold showers for the latter part of the week. That is a killer as I like a hot shower. I like to say very warm, but my family says no it's hot! ;) Anyway, we limped along until the weekend when Chuck had more time to look into it.
We have hard water in our area due to a large amount of lime. The sediment had built up and burnt out the heating elements and some other part that I can't remember the name of. So, once again we have blown up the budget for the month. Sigh. Who needs gas and food anyway? Kidding, we have plenty of food and money for gas. It is just one more thing that makes us feel like we can't get ahead.

I am thankful that hubby is handy and was able to figure out the issue. It was a real pain and took him most of the weekend. We robbed Peter to pay Paul so to speak and were able to cover this expense without dipping into our emergency fund. Good thing as we will have to dip into it next week. That is a story to share for another day. It's all good though. Life happens, and you just keep having faith because it always works out.
I puttered around while Chuck worked. My sister works at a local hospital. Drug reps are always providing them with meals. (hmm, and we wonder why our health cost are so high!) She called and asked if we wanted some gravy. Sure! Apparently at the end of the day they throw away all of the leftovers. She couldn't see that happening since these containers had never been opened. I divided it down into 2 cup servings. Three bags went into the freezer and I served some for breakfast today.
I thought Chuck deserved a treat after a frustrating weekend. This is a treat I generally reserve for Christmas. Making it now gave me a chance to think about the ingredients I need to stock up on before I make it as gifts.
Most of the leaves have finally fallen. We went out and did a quick mow. The grass needed cut in the front yard and this gave me an opportunity to cut up leaves in the back. Chuck will probably cut one more time to mulch the rest of leaves. We have started seeing frost this weekend so that will speed up the rate of falling leaves. I am always sad when the lawn mower is put away for the season. It is one chore that I don't mind and it makes the change of season seem final once it ends.
Megan I spent some more time crafting. We are making ornaments for her to give to her classmates and for the grandparents. Once complete I will post a picture.

I did some light cleaning and plan to do some deep cleaning this week. I am trying to get things in order before the Christmas decorations come out. I plan to spend a day at my parents. I will deep clean at least their living room. Mom is doing really well but still has to watch moving her left arm and has weight restrictions.
Speaking of Christmas decor.... Chuck and his assistant brought up all of the Christmas containers. He took advantage of the decent weather. It really stinks if he has to drag it all up in the snow!

Enough chit chat for today. I still need to make the weekly menu, pack lunches and Megan is asking to watch Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Oh, and be kind with your comments. No nasty political comments please!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Joy in the Ordinary

Look around, really look around and you will find joy... joy in the everyday... joy in the ordinary things.

I can't believe that it is Thursday already! This week has been full.
Monday my mom had her surgery. Thankfully her cancer was caught early. She received radiation during the surgery and will be on a cancer killing drug for the rest of her life. There is no mention of chemo for which we are grateful. She had chemo with her last round of breast cancer and it is some mean stuff! 

 I had lunch with my parents Wednesday and she is doing extremly well. In fact, she is planning for me to take her out for a little shopping on Friday morning.  
I generally wear my hear up in a bun. The exception for this is if I am going somewhere besides the grocery store.  I take the lazy route and use hot rollers. It beats standing with a curling iron for a half hour. 
We voted after Megan was dropped off at school. Then it was off for a field trip. 
We enjoyed election day 1889 style at former President Benjamin Harrison's home. It was a fun, educational trip. (For my local friends I will tell you there is a statue of naked person in the entry. Of course, that is all the kids could talk about. Ugh! Surprising it was there as President Harrison had a strong Prebyterian faith. So strong that he resisted his wife's request for a ballroom on the top floor for year since he didn't dance.)
Megan has been under the weather. She ran a low grade fever and missed school. I washed all of the bedding and throw blankets. I even hung the pillows on the line to air them out. I want those germs out of here!
We worked on school work at home. 
Finally she was feeling better. She asked for crafting and Christmas music. A girl after my own heart! 
I have been planning so we took all of our meals at home. Simple meals, but better on the budget then eating out.  Throw in 13 hours of work for me and yes, it has been a busy week! 

Things are slowing down.  I will call mom in a few and see if she needs anything done. Then there is laundry to catch up on and I need to pay bills. Yay, for ordinary things!

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Joy in the Ordinary

Look around, really look around and you will find joy... joy in the everyday... joy in the ordinary things.
 My father-in-law said this scarecrow was too cute to scare anyone.
 It's soothing to sit out and watch the leaves gently fall to the ground.
 The table center piece mums I used at my niece's bridal shower are thriving.
It isn't every day that you find a dinosaur in the kitchen!
 Megan has been sewing. She is currently making a turkey.
You know what is said about the never ending job of laundry... a blessing to have an abundance of things to wear and a blessing to have loved ones to wear them. :)
 Oh yes, it has begun! Now this doesn't mean that I am skipping over Thanksgiving. Oh no! I love Thanksgiving and I find it disappointing that it sometimes gets glossed over. I am just getting ahead to make the upcoming season less stressful.

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

Simply Gorgeous

Oh my, the weather has been treating us right! We have seen temperatures in the 80's. I guess you could call this Indian Summer although I don't really feel that we have had Fall yet. A few cool days here and there, but it is November 2nd and we haven't had a frost yet!
Today is suppose to be close to 80* again. I am loving it! It makes it hard to be inside. My home is need of some TLC so I am forcing myself to stay in and do laundry. I will also to a quick pick up. I know these days are fleeting. I will have plenty of time for deep cleaning when the cooler weather makes an appearance. 

Time has been spent getting the outside of our little home ready for the cold days that we know will come. The first thing we did was clear out all of the flower beds.
 Chuck used the blower to blow leaves out from behind the lilacs and away from the fence line. Then we mowed. We still need to mow every week. Especially when the leaves really start to fall.
Once that was done we added $20 worth of mulch to the front landscape. The area where the lilies has been cut back really needed it. 

Chuck pulled out the power washer and gave the house a good rinse.
Boy did it need it! I came behind him and washed the windows I could reach. I didn't want to look out all winter and see water spots! There are a few more to go. Climbing more then once step on the ladder is out for me with my bum foot. Chuck will tackle those remaining over the weekend.  
The only thing left in the flower beds are the the mums. 
 While the work took place Megan was busy playing.  She is great about entertaining herself. Since she was little I never let her say she was bored. I told her only boring people get bored as there is always, always something you could be doing. After a few times through the years of hearing there was nothing to I would suggest a few things and if she keep saying no to my suggestions I finally said well then go clean this or that. It was funny how all of a sudden she found something to do!
 It hasn't been all work around here. There was time spent riding bikes,and we have made several visits to see different family members. 
If you are looking for me I will be outside soaking in the warmth, sunshine and beautiful scenery the change of season brings. 

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!