Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Wednesday Words

Well here I sit killing time at a car dealership waiting for an oil change to be done.  I’ll redeem the time by blogging!  The receptionist keeps sneezing so I think I’ll switch seats.  Hold on.  😷

So have you ever considered how many times you repeatedly do things?  I realize some are (or should be) daily.  Then there’s the mundane.  I was walking the other day and wondered how many  walks Lisi and I have taken together.  I think it’s roughly 3,560 give or take a few.  No wonder she’s so predictable when when we go.  And no wonder my body just knows it’s time to go each day.  

Another is unloading the dishwasher.  It seems to always need unloading.  Thank goodness I have help.  I do have a spoon with some stuck on stuff and I keep leaving it in hoping one of these times it gets clean.  It’s been a week now.  I’m ambitious like that.

I pack lunches every day for the MYP.  I love the random texts that say “thanks for my lunch!”.  It makes it worth the effort.  I do enjoy putting in random things or lots and lots of something to get a text that asks if I’ve lost my marbles.  Some moms put in love notes. I put in random things to get a hilarious text later.

I don’t like middle age because I am constantly needing my reading glasses.  I have four pair and it still isn’t enough because all four end up in the same room and I’m squinting in the kitchen trying to read a recipe.  

We had our semi-annual visit with some special ladies this past week.  The first time they come for the year I’m always wound up wanting it to be really nice.  Well as they were walking up the sidewalk I opened a kitchen cupboard and the butter dish came crashing down and broke into 1000’s of pieces all over the counters, floor, you name it.  That was surely an ice butter dish breaker!

Can I toot our son’s horn?  He’s so well rounded.  He fishes and golfs and guts deer he shoots.  He is kind to the littlest kids and the elderly and runs chainsaws to bring down large trees.  He cooks and bakes and comes up with clever ideas to decorate little centerpieces with twine.  I love our visits and the fact a 17-year old guy still sends me funny memes and throws me onto the sofa when I’m sassy.  His creative and caring mind is all him.  We’ve had little to do with it.  And we are again thankful he’s ours.

The Chairman and I “floated” last week.  It’s a zen-like place where you go into this little pod and lie there in a water solution with approximately 900 pounds of Epsom salts.  You then float in perfect temperatures and a darkness level you choose and soak your cares away.  I’m a bit ADHD and thought after a few minutes it was dumb and I wanted out.  Then I relaxed and time stood still and I couldn’t really feel my limbs and then suddenly it was over.  When I met up with the Chairman to see how his soak went he was all enthusiastic.  I still think massages are better.

Well hopefully I’m out of this waiting room soon.  I just heard the sneezing receptionist nonchalantly say that the reason “John” is going to be late is because he’s caught up in traffic as a pedestrian just died where “John” was driving.  Life is fragile.  

Happy week ahead! I’ll post some pictures once I get home. 

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Tuesday Talk

My my my.  How times have changed.  Years and years and years ago I was a teenager walking home from school at the edge of a prairie town in South Dakota.  The wind was often blowing strong and the backpack was heavy.  I trudged on and was so very glad to walk into the warm and always welcoming house.  There was absolutely no communication between my mom and me from early in the morning until the late-afternoon.

Today there is constant communication.  Just a few minutes ago our sweet and spunky teen was walking to her driving school class and said it was too far to walk.  It was cold.  She was tired.  I just responded with appropriate emojis but didn't budge to go drive her since it was only five blocks to walk.  Finally there was a three-word text.  "This is abuse".  Goodness that made me laugh!

I went to the dentist today.  I was concerned as it had been awhile.  I also was concerned as I have super sensitivity on each side and was convinced I had one or more cavities.  As my hygienist was working her magic with the sharp metal tools she asked quietly, "you must like chia seeds too!".  Oops!  Then she said a bit later, "you must floss and do exactly what you should do because your tissue health is excellent!".  Well.  I last flossed several months ago when there was an apple peel stuck between two teeth.  That must have counted.  Is it lying to tell her otherwise?  I think not.

Did you know Linda is the trendiest name of all time?  I just read that this week.  I always knew I was trendy!  Or maybe my parents had a premonition.  Or maybe they had no clue what to name this third child and just looked at the number one spot and didn't look further.

I was shopping with one of our daughters recently and saw a couple ladies acting just a bit "off".  They were dragging two huge baskets stuffed with clothes and didn't show an interest in trying on anything.  I then noticed some of the clerks were just milling about near the front doors making idle chit-chat about nothing but keeping an eye on these two ladies.  I told my daughter we were leaving.  I sensed something was going to go down.  As we walked outside there was the getaway car.  I could just tell.  No license plate.  Blacked out windows.  And just idling by the front door.  Well moments later there were a LOT of police cars.  I hope they learned their lesson.

This past weekend we had two family parties.  One was for one of the younger ones of the extended family.  The other was for one of the oldest ones of the extended family.  Between the two parties was five cakes.  How in the tarnation am I to at least maintain my weight with five cakes to choose from in just two days?  I won't even mention the Mexican food choices or the lobster and clam sauce.  Oh my.

We have some wonderful extras coming tomorrow to share our home with.  How many of you look at the bathroom rugs or towels and think they look gross and buy new before the special people arrive?  Well today I did.  Life is hard on bathroom rugs and towels.

The Chairman and I celebrated anniversary #23 this past weekend.  We almost went out for a wonderful dinner at a nearby nice restaurant.  Then I realized I had some special grass-fed steaks a friend gave to us.  And sauteéd mushrooms.  And garlic pasta.  And delicious butternut squash.  And asparagus.  And salad with balsamic vinaigrette.  And so we dimmed the lights and ate at home.  It was better than the restaurant.  I'm certain of that.  And I'm certain we picked each other 23-years ago for all the right reasons.

What is it about babies?  I got to have another bit of time with this little goon.  He's only four months and wormed his way into my heart.  When I look at their bright eyes I just can't wait to see what they'll be when they grow up.  And I can totally picture how much your heart would feel like exploding if you became a Grandma.  I know I have lots of time yet, but if I squint, I can almost see what it would be like.

So happy week ahead to you!  Thanks for the visit.  I always look forward to this.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Monday Musings

Greetings!  How's the weather over there?  Here we have a brisk wind out of the northwest at about 15 and snow showers are intermittent.  I kinda sound like a weather woman don't I? 

Looking forward to the time change?  I'm one of those weird ones that don't mind dark evenings.  I think it's because the scale of cozy goes up from about a six to a nine.  Unless the MYP are fighting.  Then it's a -27 and the night feels long.  Of course our MYP never disagree.  Yeah... right.

Anyway!  I saw a shower curtain advertised in Bed Bath and Beyond yesterday.  So?  You say.  Well it was just for Thanksgiving and had all these cute little sayings in fall colors.  That my friends is what you call disposable income.  Holiday shower curtains.  I would put it up and leave it up until the 4th of July.  I hate taking ours down to put in the laundry.  Feels like no matter what kind of clip you have it's like wrestling with a pig in a tub trying to get it off the pole. 

I recently needed to fill a prescription and was just fascinated at the humongous line at the local Walgreen's.  There are lots and lots and lots of people on prescriptions.  And not one person was chatty in the line nor did they look happy.  I'm guessing prescription medication makes you grumpy.  My take anyway.

We got one of those envelopes you never like to see.  A notice of toll violation.  Uh Oh.  We forgot to pay many months back and they took a picture of our license plate.  Two of the fines was our error and one wasn't legit.  I called the IL tollway number expecting to be on hold for 37 minutes and then have to go through 23 steps to get a human that speaks in human tones.  Well I called up and after two options I was talking to human.  He was pleasant and within about 10 minutes he removed not the one but all three fines and told me to have a nice day.  Will wonders ever cease?

I was thinking of situations we see other people in.  And I was thinking of our reaction and how it makes us feel. 

There's the situation where we see a need.  We offer and extend help.  The help is well received.  And they feel better and we feel better.  A great feeling! 

There's the situation where we see a need.  We don't offer to extend help.  No help is given.  They don't know they could feel better and we do know that we should have done something and are left with remorse.  A bad feeling.

There's the situation where we see a need.  And there is absolutely nothing we can do to help so we can't offer any.  We still see them in their needy state and we just feel so sad for them.  An awful feeling really - unless we realize that sometimes it's out of our power and we leave it to the one with All power.  Then a very awful feeling can be changed to "I've done what I could". 

Well that's all that's been rattling around in my mostly empty head.  I hope yours is filled with more than this! 

Monday, October 23, 2017

Monday Musings

Greetings!  So what's new on your end?  Oh really?  I wish you'd speak louder so I could actually hear you.  

Lets see.  Well I was actually alone for a large portion of this past weekend.  It was oddly very nice for about the first 12 hours.  Then I got bored and kept following various family members on Find Friends and wished I was with them.  Then I resorted to Snapchatting one of the MYP very, very often which was fun for me and helped alleviate her boredom riding in the car for 24 hours as well.  Thank goodness they all returned and my heart was happy as we all shared our weekend around the table last night.  

I decided on a whim to rearrange our bedroom completely while the Chairman was away  I found not just dust bunnies but South Dakota jackrabbits behind a couple of the dressers.  I used to think of myself as a decent housekeeper.  Not anymore.  

The positive in the rearranging is obviously everything is clean again.  The negative is that we had to switch sides of the bed.  So that's weird.  And when I wake up I feel like I'm somewhere else until the cobwebs clear.  

The other night the dog goes bounding out the back door and barks her fool head off.  I was standing in the garage and suddenly there was a terrible pungent skunk spray smell.  I audibly said, 'oh no!'.  Then in bounds Lisi.  I check her all over.  Thank goodness for skunks that miss their target.  

It suddenly feels quite chilly around here!  I just saw a map that says we are to have a cold winter and an average amount of snow.  I sure hope so.  I like winter too.  But before it hits, we are soaking up some of fall's beauty.  

I got to babysit for our friend's little baby the other day for the morning.  He's three months old.  He's just perfect.  He's got these amazing long eyelashes.  And he has such a ready smile.  For just a couple seconds I pretended to be a Grandma and it felt really fun.  You Grandmas must really love your role.  

When I was cleaning out some drawers in my bedroom I found the positive pregnancy tests from nearly 16 years ago.  I never had thrown them out.  And I still didn't.  That's probably really weird of me.  But even though she's soon taking driving school, I love to think of the hope I had of her years and years ago.  

We have a little hamster at our house for almost a year now.  One of the MYP really wanted him.  She actually paid for him with her own money and assured me that she would be solely responsible for him.  She'd feed him.  Change his bedding.  Give him treats.  Well the past couple months he has become my hamster.  I feed him and give him spinach.  And I let him run all over my lap and carry him around the house.  He's a cute little bugger.  I just wonder why all pets suddenly become the mom's pet?  Or maybe it's because I secretly like it.  I'm kind of a nurturer on steroids.

Yesterday it was twenty-one years ago that a little tiny baby was born.  I never forget that date because it was the day I became a mama.  I suddenly realized that being a mother makes you feel a part of your heart is in another body.  She passed away three days later and when she did a tiny little hole in my heart was born.  A NICU nurse I recently talk to said that if she were to have been born today she would most likely would still be alive.  I don't wish for that because I have faith to believe there were other plans for her.  I have faith to believe that there also were other plans for her future siblings that came after her.  For that, we are just thankful to have been led through all the experiences that were ours in growing our family.  

So back to mundane Monday chores.  See you next time!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Tuesday Talk

Greetings!  I think all of the MYP are working away at homework.  The Chairman took Lisi out for walk #2, so I'll sit and visit with you since no one else is around to listen.

Where did we leave off?  Oh yes!  Camping!  We had wonderful reservations at an amazing park just two hours from here.  The forecast looked not just like rain, but buckets of rain.  The fellow-campers and I were group texting about it and the consensus was to pull the plug on the camping venture. 

So!  We since there was so much rain going on outside, we went to a waterpark.  Seems like an oxymoron somehow.  We went with a few other camper wanna-bes.  Had delicious food we carried in.  Super-fun games.  Enriching visits.  Then we went to another of the camper wanna-bes home and had a few more games, delicious food and an enriching visit.  Here we are at the table.  Well here they are.  I usually take the pictures.
The older of the MYP caught a ride to Minnesota.  I was so very happy to receive this picture.  It makes my heart smile.  I was so glad for them to be able to go.  And I was so glad when the flock all landed back on the nest again.  It seems our supper table times are more and more precious.
We have a banquet coming in two days at a high-ka-flootin country club for the high school tennis team.  I never know what to wear, what purse to carry, what to say, how to act when I got to these events.  I always feel like a country mouse that went to the big city.  I'm glad the Chairman is good at these things and I can just stuff my face full of salad.  You can take the girl out of the country, but you can't take the country out of the girl.  Or middle-aged woman.

Usually people like to look at pictures and floor plans of super-big houses.  I am totally enamored with small houses.  Tiny houses.  Living in a camper for a year.  I'm weird like that. 

I like ironing.  There I've said it.  Most the people I know don't enjoy it.  I thoroughly enjoy the whole process and lining up the pressed shirts with military precision in the closet.

I like getting groceries too.  Actually, I have enough food in the house right now to feed us all for at least three months.  I need to stop buying and cooking up what we do have. 

One week from today we go through the whole senior picture process all over again.  Last year it was a BIG deal.  There was planning of hairstyles and outfit changes and locations and the timing of the sun.  I asked about it for the one this year and he said he thought he had a shirt that might work.  And that was as of a big deal as he thought it needed to be.  Sons can sometimes be easier.

Well this is probably enough talk this Tuesday. 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Words this Wednesday

Greetings!  Can you tell I sound different?  It's just the congestion talking.  I had a doozy of a cold.  I thought it was actually the flu but took a few on-line quizzes and they kept saying it was a cold.  No matter I'm on the mend but still am annoying the Chairman by coughing at night.

If you find something you really like do you have the urge to just buy another so that you have a backup?  I do it often.  This morning I just discovered my favorite (and yet in good shape) slippers were at a brag price on Amazon and so I just ordered them even though I won't need them until the winter of 2019. 

I have a lot of friends.  This is true in real life, but right now I'm talking about Instagram and Facebook.  I only accept friends that I know - or know their family.  I've think that some of the people I am "friends" with that I don't know I'd really like if we didn't live 500 miles apart from each other.  I sense a common goal in life, the same interests and humor.  Maybe we'll meet some day!

I make cinnamon rolls a lot.  Lately, it's been a LOT due to orders, needs, etc.   A couple tricks for you as far as frosting if you care.  I usually add at least two tablespoons of maple syrup to the frosting ingredients.  Try it.  I promise.  Also always always add a dash of salt.  A splash of cold coffee is always fun too.  And!  To keep the adults children from fighting over who gets the middle pieces, put the nicest looking rolls in the corners and add a little bit extra frosting over the dry corner area.  Problem solved.

One of our teens just went on a prescription.  I picked it up from the pharmacist and she said "this medication might make her moody or irritable"... and I said "she's 15 so how will I know?"  And we both threw our heads back and laughed and laughed. 

Our number one son sent this picture the other night.  My first response was "oh deer".  I asked if he was going to be done hunting for the year and he looked at me as if I lost my mind.  Maybe I have.  I guess there's always the elusive big buck out there to get. 
If you're a friend of mine on Instagram, you've already seen this picture.  It happens very frequently here.  I just can't figure out how an 8-pound cat can have such power over a 75-pound dog.  But he does.  Don't worry... I shoo the cat off the dog bed to his own cat bed and all is well. 
When my dad was living and people told me that this or that about me reminded me of him I would sometimes cringe.  Or say "oh boy".  Now since he has passed away when people say something I did or said reminds them of my dad I just feel so thankful inside.  I think it is a way for me to feel close to him even though he's gone.  Grief is such an uncharted territory.  Most days are really really normal.  And then there's the day where I am doing something he would have liked to do.   Or hear something that I know he'd love to hear.  And I so wish I could pick up the phone and text him about it.  Or visit across the table and watch his eyes twinkle as he told about someone he recently was with.  I miss him.  Sometimes a lot. 

The other day it was beautiful.  It was what you would consider a perfect fall day.  Brilliant blue skies, colorful trees, and perfect temperature.  I picked up my phone and tried to take a picture.  I was certain it would be amazing.  I got home and looked at the pictures I took.  They were ok, but nothing special.  Really the reason they weren't amazing pictures was that you couldn't see the whole picture.  You couldn't feel the sun, see the brilliant blue and smell the dying leaves.  I'm just so so glad that some day we'll see the whole picture.  And for now, I'll enjoy the glimpses we do see.

Happy rest of the week to you!  We have a potentially memorable weekend planned.  It could be really really wonderful or really really awful.  Stay tuned! 

Monday, October 2, 2017

Monday Musings

Ok I lied.  I didn't type this on Monday.  I set it to post on Monday morning because I didn't want to say Sunday Musings because that's weird.

What did people do before cell phones and texting?  I actually should remember this myself since I vividly remember getting my first cell phone 17 years ago.  We have one of our MYP returning from a special place and we have been texting quite often tonight on the logistics of when/where to meet.  For the life of me. I can't remember how we did it before.  Maybe we just didn't go anywhere.

I'm pretty much totally responsible for feeding my family of five, plus one cat, dog, and hamster.  I find that if the house is stocked with plenty of food and I have meals planned out I'm in a much better mood.  There's even bonus good-feelings if I actually have meals prepared and waiting in the freezer.  Yesterday, I did up a large batch of clam sauce and coconut curry.  I was almost giddy as I saw the completed meals sitting there on the stove.

There's an old country song that has these lyrics, 'life's about changing nothing ever stays the same...'.  and really that's true.  Babies continually change.  Growing teens are going through major decisions and burgeoning independence.  As parents, we go from being the center of the universe to these little souls to a place to check in with when they need it.  Marriages need to continually adjust to the different phases life throws at us.  My dear mom is going through a major experience with my dad now gone.  The house is too quiet.  The supper table has one plate set.  Yes, life is full of continual adjustments from birth to the grave.  I'm still trying to negotiate through this wonderful journey of life.  I think the best way to handle all the adjustments is to just appreciate today.  Because tomorrow will be different.  Sounds good, right?  I may or may not have cried just a little when I waved off one of our MYP for an extended weekend a couple states away.  😬  She sent this photo which warmed my heart.  The eldest in my brother and my families.

We enjoyed Lake Michigan this afternoon.  It was so pretty if you closed squinted your eyes you would have almost thought you were in the Caribbean.  However, there was a brisk wind so not really.  But it was pretty anyway!

Well this is enough.  I'm off to retrieve the last nestling very soon from his weekend away.  Have a great week!