This is where I go out on a limb and ponder a while.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Autumn Blessings

"Autumn, the year's last, loveliest smile".
-William Cullen Bryant

Fall truly is the loveliest time of year, hands down.  I always get sentimental this time of year.  I also get excited, because there are so many changes coming.  Lots of exciting events to look forward to.  My favorite holidays, harvest time, several family birthdays, hunting season, and of course, the fall colors.  But that last event comes and goes way too fast.  I guess that's why so many people take endless photos of the trees in their various stages of dress.  But I never tire of it.  My husband and I attended a conference in Duluth this past weekend and the colors were at peak.  We are both past the half-century mark in age, and yet, we were both in awe of the vistas as we came up over 'the hill' on our way home.  It never gets old.

We have another reason for excitement this fall - two more grandbabies.  One came just before conference.  We just couldn't wait to meet him, so squeezed in two-day trip to Iowa before Duluth.  It was so worth it.  We spent a day spoiling the two other grandchildren so that my son and daughter-in-law could have a day with the new baby.  We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and totally wore out the kids (ourselves too!).

Meet Owen.  Love the name.  

Big brother and sister.  They are so cute - they love their little brother!

Yeah, I'm a proud Nana! :)

The next baby comes in November, just before Thanksgiving.  That will be grandchild number 8.

Spending the rest of my week cooking apples!  I think I'll make apple butter and make apple pie filling to go into the freezer.  The ranch is listed for sale, but no buyers yet, so we have the good fortune to be able to harvest apples from the orchard one more year.

Much to be thankful for in my corner of the world!


Monday, September 15, 2014

Breaking the Chain

So my friend Connie at Crafty Home Cottage was kind enough to invite me to participate in a blog hop.  Because I really like Connie and her blog, I immediately said yes!  I needed to prepare a bio along with a photo for her by the following Monday.  Easy peasy.  I know, I'm pretty vague about these things when it comes to blogging.  I am flattered when people read what I write, of course, who wouldn't be!  I blog because if I don't write, the words inside my head roll around and around and pretty soon I can't hear what people are saying to me because there are too many words crowding inside my head.  I also use my blog as a journal/scrapbook of sorts.  I just looked back at pictures of my Littles the other day and it was amazing to see how much they have grown.  But I guess I just don't pay attention to things like Blog Hops, and Something Monday, or Something Else Thursday, or What Have You because I was clueless as to what they meant and didn't have the time to figure it out.

Now I thought I was finished at that point, go ahead and laugh :)  I found out from Connie the end of this past week that it was also my responsibility to find three people from my list of followers to share their bio on my blog so that I could introduce them in the blog hop for this upcoming week.  Ok, I could do that, and it was my intention to accomplish that some time between Friday and Sunday, but - no such luck.  We had some major storm damage up at the ranch.  Some downed trees and part of the fence blew over in the paddock.  And there is no internet up there.  Not much I could do about that.  It reminds me of when I used to get chain letters and did not pass them on.  So I guess I broke the chain again...

Is there a time out for breaking the blog hop chain???

Here's this week's favorite photo:

Foggy morning on the lake yesterday and I got lucky with this photo :)


Friday, September 5, 2014

Change is Good: And It's Good to Be Back!

It's time to get back into the swing of things.  We spent a few months at the ranch and then found a lake home that we loved at first sight.  We moved in this summer.  It was a difficult move for all of us, mainly because we have too much 'stuff'.  It has taught us a lesson about acquiring possessions.  We think more carefully before accepting or buying anything these days.  And we are more apt to give things away, rather than hang onto them 'just in case' we might need them some day.
I sent E. off to her first day at the new school the other day and decided it was time to check in with my blog - finally.  When I saw the the last sentence of my last post, I felt it was so fitting because I had just posted a status on Facebook:  Sent my 'baby' girl off to her first day at a new school. She was nervous. So was/am I. Change is hard. But also good.  

Lake living is so much fun for all ages :)

Sometimes the view takes your breath away..

Embrace Change!


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Moving On

We're moving.  We've been in this house for 8 1/2 years.  That may or may not sound like a long time, depending on your lifestyle.  For us, it has been a long time.  It is the longest time we have been in one house.  My husband's job is the type of position that in order to 'move up' you need to move to another location.  And we have moved a lot.  This will be our 14th move since we married.  But this time it's not a move for a job change.  We're looking for a lifestyle change.  We are less than a decade away from retirement, we have several grandchildren, and we're ready for that 'place on the lake'.  So we put our house on the market, thinking it would maybe sell in a few months, but it sold within a week, and we have not been able to find the place we want to buy.  So, we're moving up to the ranch until we find the perfect place.  So now we'll have to move twice!  Not the perfect situation, but it can't be helped.

But as I sit here, looking at the piles of books, cd's, games, the mazes of packed boxes, I feel just a little sad.  A lot of memories were made in this particular house, simply because E. grew up here and two weddings happened here, and all 6 grandchildren were born here.  (Not really born in the house, but, you know...)  My husband and I have spent hundreds of summer evenings sitting on the deck, dreaming about our future.  The boys spent hours with their buds, hanging out down in the 'man cave'.   E. and her friends spent many summer afternoons splashing in the pool out in the back yard.  And where else would you find those swings?

   They hang from a 2 x 10 that has grown into the two oak trees - there is no way they will come down.

          And the infamous 'Nerf Wars' - I hope we find a house with a 'run-around' kitchen again :)

This is one of the grands when he was first born:

And here he is, three years later, instigating a nerf war.  They all grow so fast!


Thank heavens his Dad has someone to play with, hehe!

I guess I can be just grateful that I have taken literally thousands of photos over the past 8 years and saved them all on disks.  Life does go on and things have to change.  Change is good.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

Thanksgiving.  It's all about family.  And specifically in our family, it's all about the littles!  I look forward to seeing all of them and my kids look forward to seeing all of their nieces and nephews together.  There is nothing better than cousins getting together for holidays.  When I was a child, I remember holidays with my cousins - I had something like 35 cousins, last time I counted.  And we didn't see each other sometimes for half a year or longer, but it didn't matter how long - we just picked up where we left off.  There was never an uncomfortable, get-to-know-each-other-again period.  That's the beauty of cousins.  It's like siblings, only without the baggage :)  My older four children didn't have cousins to hang out with when they were growing up.  They see the value of keeping their own children in touch with their cousins, though, and that is a blessing.  I haven't posted pics of my family in a long time, so I thought I would post some today.

Sugar works for Goldfish crackers :)

He loves his 'Scout'.

I keep one cupboard in the dining room empty for the Littles to play in.  They call it "The Mousehole"  :)

Lighting the candles on E's "Birthday Pie"

Yeah, this is me cutting the pie, E., the birthday girl, my oldest daughter with the video camera, and my oldest son, along with several of the Littles at the table, waiting for pie.  All five of my kids were here with their families, but the rest of them were too camera-shy, I guess.

"I want this one"


Getting sleepy with Papa John.

Switching over to Uncle's lap.

I hope yours was a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.  Take a peek at my food blog I just started -
Tasteful Regards at  I posted my instructions for turkey soup.  It's very cold and snowy here in MN and I'm in the mood for lots of comfort food, how about you?

Stay Warm!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Warm Wishes

Here is a 'warm fuzzy' for you on this chilly Monday morning.  This is Olive.  We adopted her from the shelter several months ago and she is such a blessing.  She's one of those rare social cats that greets everyone who comes to the door and hasn't met a single person she doesn't like.  Nothing seems to faze her, not dogs, vacuum cleaners, kitchen appliances, small children, whatever.  Just having her around makes a person feel relaxed.  I think I'll make this my desktop background.  
 Happy Monday!


Thursday, November 21, 2013

November Skies

What is it about November skies that makes them so beautiful?  Nearly every sunrise and sunset this past month has been breathtakingly beautiful and photo-worthy.

I have many, many photos of the sunrise while waiting for the bus, and my guess is people grow weary of my posting the same scene over and over.  But to me, it is so fresh and new every day that I can't help myself.  
It takes my breath away every time.

I am so grateful for the gift of a beautiful sunrise.  And the benefit of being able to walk my daughter to the bus stop every morning, no matter what the weather.  It's all good.