Monday, December 31, 2007

Sad news

We are so sorry to share the news that our dear dog Lincoln died this morning. He was acting just fine, but yesterday, couldn't get up off his dog bed. This morning he again didn't move and so Duane and I carried him on his bed to the vet. They discovered liver/spleen cancer and bleeding in the abdomen. There was really no choice but to let him go with his dignity and without pain. Our entire family is very sad as he's been such a huge part off our lives.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Winter Wonderland!

Ok, I must have time on my hands today! Was out this morning shoveling (Duane gone, remember?)and it is just so pretty out, so had to take some pictures. Rayna's first solo snowman! And Lincoln sitting there just watching the world go by... I am NOT a winter person. But if it is to be cold and dark, why not have snow? This year is for me for sure!

Wild for Webkinz

Thanks to some generous folks, we have some new members of our family. The kids have their first Webkinz and just love them. Rayna has Stripes (panda), Rainbow (pink pony), Trevor has Claws (bear) and Bucky (deer), and Mira has Snowball (bunny) and Vanilla (white dog). They have really enjoyed just playing with them as well as all the computer stuff you can do with your new 'friends'. Thought I'd post a picture.

It is snowing!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Birthdays and bulging

The first pictures are from a week ago when we were at Anderson's celebrating Malory's #6 birthday and Ella's #1! Happy birthday to two very sweet little girls.

Yes, our house as well as our bellies were bulging on Christmas Day. We enjoyed having most of Duane's extended family as well as some others including my folks and other dear friends. We were 33 here and the walls felt close (cozy?). The food was Italian of course thanks to the ethnic background of most. It was just YUM. Spaghetti with all the meats, eggplant, shells, good garlic bread, salad, cheesecake and other desserts. We ate to our fill and the coffee flowed (thanks to Becky!). The kids all enjoyed being together and made it through the day with only one split lip (Trevor) and one bonk on the forehead (Mira). The pictures are of one table, Grandma teaching Trevor magic tricks with Gma, Aunt, cousins watching on. And one of the ten kids here (Jael and Seth L., Tasha and Toby L., Ayden, Brennan, and Gavin W., and our three).

Now we are enjoying the Christmas break. Today, Trevor and Mira spent some time at Gpa and Gma Debelak's and Rayna and I went shopping together. It is always just wonderful to have one child on their own. And T&M had a fun time sledding and spending time with Gpa and Gma too. Tomorrow is more snow! They say 3-6". Duane just left a bit ago for parts 'north'. He needed to do an inspection to get a job done. Hope he doesn't get stuck somewhere!

And then we have our spec. mtg. visit coming on NYs Eve. We are so lucky to have Bonita/Wendy coming! We'll tell them goodnight (probably quite late!) and then we'll leave early NYs Day for California. I doubt I post again until after we're home from that.

Happy New Year to all! May 2008 be prosperous in all the right ways.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Homesick for South Dakota

Most of you know I'm a walker. Not just a casual walker. A walker that doesn't miss. I tell people I go 'every day'. And I try to. Well tonight after special meeting it was warm and snug inside. And outside it was bitter. The temperature said 14 degrees and the wind was blowing about 35-40 mph. But I felt like I should go. Lincoln was looking at me with a look in his eyes, 'well, what are you waiting for?'. So I bundled up and went out and I was transported back in time. Most my growing up years were in South Dakota. Think open prairie. Think wind and lots of it. We rarely had a snow that didn't come sideways. Snow always drifted. I would see calendar pictures of a lovely snow that landed on fenceposts and it was tall and beautiful. In South Dakota, it swoops down in the wind and is so hard you can walk on top of it. I told the kids a story recently how in one storm, the drift went all the way up to the roof of a neighbor's garage and we had an awesome sledding hill for a long time! I think my folks have pictures to prove it. Well anyway, what I'm getting at is that tonight I was 11 again. Coming home from school (1/2 mile!) walking in the bitter wind and snow (nothing ever got cancelled out there... you just kept doing what you usually did). And it was a wonderful memory. And now I have a bit of windburn on my cheeks and a refreshed memory of long ago.

All this follows a very awesome special meeting day today. We were so lucky to have two meetings this year. And the help was so needed.

More after Christmas! I'm sure I'll have a story after 33 (mostly Italian folks) spend the day here!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Old age

Ok... I know I'm not old. But I must be getting there. I went for an eye appointment this week and got prescribed some reading glasses! I really don't need them all that much, but yet it helps. Last night before meeting, I just couldn't bring myself to wearing them. So... what do I do? Wear them only in the privacy of my home, or own up to the fact that I'm 42 and my eyes aren't what they used to be. I tried to find a 'fun' pair to make old age not so ugly.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Kick in the seat

Someone in Minnesota is the motivator this time! I haven't updated. Days are full. Life seems mundane. But here's some pictures (again in mixed order)of the past week anyway. Cookie exchange at Dawn's. Cindy has pursed lips as she blows out the candles. Mira's holiday program. Our last time to build the kindergarten gingerbread house! Updates on Trevor's room. We got a new laptop, so have been trying to get files up and running on that. Now the holiday season is upon us. We have special meeting on Sunday which will be so welcome. An Italian feast here on Christmas Day with a lot of Duane's extended family and some others added in. Worker visit on NYs eve. We leave NYs Day for CA. Will be gone nearly a week. We'll be on a cruise with Keith and Jane's family and Trenton and Sarah Smith. Should be a blast provided no one gets sick!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

St. Nick's Day

Mira came home all excited about St. Nick's Day. I guess St. Nick comes on Dec. 5th and puts candy and a small toy in a stocking. Well before they went to bed last night, the kids taped up one sock each and went to bed with great hope. It was so cute. So I put in a quarter, a small sucker (leftover from Halloween!), and a tiny fun pad I planned to give to them for special meeting on the 23rd. They knew it was really me, but made them dance around in excitement on a cold morning. I just thought the socks looked so hilarious up on the mantle. Notice that the workers are looking at them too! :-)

Saturday, December 1, 2007


I've posted a bunch of pictures and they are just in perfect reverse order of our day. I've got to figure out this blogging thing a bit better some day! Anyway, we are snowed/iced in today. Will post some pictures from today. Basketball for Trevor, gymnastics for the girls, snow forts and fresh bread. Cozy winter nights can be very nice. Stay warm!

Happy Birthday Dad and Grandpa

Dad is 77 years young. He had his birthday Nov. 27th, and they came in to celebrate last night. We had Mama Mias for supper and cake at home. Happy Birthday Dad!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Can't forget...the boy!

Took one of Trevor the other night that looks just like he naturally does. He's a charmer.

The girls

Ok, I might come across as a proud 'Aunty' or maybe I just enjoy my babysitting with Ella. Or maybe I'm trying to pretend I'm a good photographer. But anyhoo, I shot a couple pictures this afternoon that I'll post. Was fun to have Ella today as she is a little 'walker' now and not a 'crawler'. We had a good day!

Friday, November 23, 2007


Urp! We ate our fill. We were at my folks in Janesville for Thanksgiving. Duane's folks rode out with us too, so nice to have both families together. Steve and Karen, Nathan (Laura driving down to KY to see boyfriend, John McMaine), Trenton and Sarah all togeher. Was a nice day.

Soon there will be pictures of Trevor's room. It is painted. But finishing touches need to be done. He's just glad to be out of the 'nursery'. I'd say it is about time since he's 7 1/2!

Sunday, November 18, 2007


Our field lost a pillar this past weekend. Harlan Schoonover died as a result of a car accident on Friday morning. His funeral is Tuesday evening. Harlan and Eleanor have been such a help and encouragement to us younger ones. Our hearts ache for their wonderful family. He will be sorely missed.

Friday, November 16, 2007


Here's the 'Pack' before they head off to school this morning. They are proudly standing by the Lego tower they made with dad last night. I'm off to priming Trevor's room and then hopefully painting too! Happy weekend!

Go Pack Go!

Our neighbor gave us a Brett Favre jersey her boy outgrew. Mira wanted to wear it today. So... Go Packers!!!

Go Pack Go!

Thursday, November 15, 2007


I am loving my time in Mira's classroom. I've been scheduled for the school year to be there twice/week. The kids are so sweet and innocent at this age. Yesterday, "Maggie" leaned over the table and said to me, 'do you know what hiccups are?' I was expecting some explanation about collapsing diaphragms or something, so I said, 'what are they?'. She said very matter-a-factly, 'they are farts that come out your throat!'. I can't wait for my next time to go...

Monday, November 12, 2007

November nothings

Lest I get in trouble from the enormous following of the blog... (haha) will post at least a blurb saying we're still alive. Enjoyed a great weekend. Trevor's b-ball game was a victory. He's quite pleased. The girls love their gymnastics too (in the same class, different levels). We had company again for Sunday night. I love having people over on a dreary, fall evening. We are very fortunate to have so many dear friends nearby. Spending more time in the Mira's kindergarten room. I found it funny that she got in trouble by the teacher with me in the room (for being too silly and snorting with her nose). What a goof.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Halloween 2007

Laura freezing at Trevor's soccer game

Iowa motivation

I have a friend from Iowa (in the boonies) that I've had since we were wee little girls. She's nearly my age, but much more spunky (she will be spunky until she's 97). Anyway, she sent a nasty last night saying, 'update your blog!', so I will, even though I haven't much to share. We've been busy with the school stuff still. Another field trip (no pictures of that one), having company with friends from around here, a visit from my niece Laura (I'll throw in a picture of her freezing at Trevor's last soccer game), a vist from my mom (Dad was helping at Menomonie convention), and Halloween (I'll post one of the kids from Halloween night). Now the next post I hopefully have is the beginnings of Trevor's new hunting bedroom. He's very excited for me to get going on it. And one last thing! It was our #13 anniversary yesterday. We went out for supper on Sunday night together and when I came home from Trevor's basketball practice, he had flowers, soft music playing and a lovely card waiting. He's so good to me! So everyone can thank Brenda for an update!!!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Field trip

Today was Mira's field trip to the pumpkin farm. The weather was intermittant rain and winds at approximately 30-40 mph. I think you get the picture! I was assigned four other little girls besides Mira and they were very sweet. It wasn't too bad of a day, but I'm sure glad I don't teach kindgergarten!

On a side note, we got great news that the oncologist doesn't think mom needs radiation! So all she needs to do is heal and give thanks now...

Friday, October 12, 2007

Kids' bathroom

I can't stop! I've been wanting finish the kids' bathroom since last February. I found a neat plastic shower curtain at Target with the world map on it. Then painted the walls a vibrant yellow. Today I decided to stencil countries around the top where we have a keen interest (China of course, places our ancestors came from, places where workers labor that we correspond with, etc.) It was very fun and wonderful to think of friends we have all over the world. I'll post a couple pictures since my blog has nothing else to fill up with!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Laundry room!

After wading through a mess for the past 13 years, I finally decided to get organized in the laundry room. I wish I could have the "Before" and "After" pictures, but I'll just show you the after... painted the walls a very light blue. Then decided the whole room looked square: the room dimension, the appliances, the window, and storage boxes... so I thought... polka dots! And so here it is! Now I just hope I'm lucky and the kids help keep it organized!

Sunday, October 7, 2007


We must have a dull life. I feel like I could never update our blog on a weekly basis! But anyway, a brief update. No pictures this time. Have had an emotional week here. Found out last week my mom had a breast cancer recurrance. She was in good hands at Mayo and had a lumpectomy. Radiation will be done near home here in WI. We're so thankful it was caught early again. Enjoyed them here for the day today. There's nothing like mom and dad! Duane was in Montana for two days lately. The kids doing well in school. Trevor scored the only point in yesterday's soccer match and so he's one proud fellow! All from our corner. Maybe we'll have something exciting to share sometime!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Fall schedule/convention

Well convention is over for us and we are back to our school/fall schedule. I'm actually enjoying being really alone for the first time in nearly 8 years. I'm starting to get more involved in the kids' classrooms. And I get to babysit 'the hurricane', Ella who keeps me running once/week. Our evenings have turned out to be busier than I wanted, but that is how it goes with three school kids with outside interests. Mondays are piano, Tuesdays are free, Wednesdays are gymnastics for the girls and meeting, Thursdays are soccer practice, and Saturday mornings are soccer games. Whew!

Convention was awesome in every way. The kids had a wonderful time with all their friends and we enjoyed having the motorhome up there again. Now back to reality!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Back to school

Yes, the time has come. The kids all went back to school last week. Will put up a picture of the three musketeers on the first morning. Yes, I had a few tears. But they dried up and I got on with the day. We really enjoyed our last days of summer. A couple of days up helping at preps. And a time with friends at the Wisconsin Dells. Will post a couple pictures from there if I can figure this out! Now we look forward to convention this week! Happy fall to all!

Saturday, August 4, 2007


We enjoyed a visit from my brother and family, Keith and Jane Rowland from CA. Then we had birthdays. Trevor's is the end of June and Mira and Rayna's are on July 9 and 10. They are now 8, 7, and 5. We had a bunch of their little friends (and parents!) over for supper one night. The end of July we went up to Door County for three days. We had a great time there but came home to a shot-up van that was left in the driveway. That's been a pain. Now only a month left before school starts. I'm not one of those moms that can't wait to send them to school. I will miss them a lot especially with the 'baby' going this year to kindergarten! Enjoy the rest of summer! Will try to post a couple of pictures too.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Colorado - June 25, 2007! We had an awesome trip out west. This was taken at the top of Mt. Evans on Monday after Elizabeth I convention. It was great to be with uncle Alan Anderson!