Sunday, September 27, 2009

So stinkin’ proud

Never in a million years did I think I would be spending my Wednesday evenings going to Football games.  But here we are watching our oldest grandson, Travis, playing middle school football.

When we were in 7th grade (they didn’t call it Middle School back then) it was red flag football in the local park.  No jerseys, pads, or helmets.  When my kids were in middle school they played football on the grass fields of the middle school. 


  But these days the kids play under the lights of the high school stadium.  They even have an announcer.  It was kind of strange to hear Travis’ name called out every time he blocked or ran the ball.  It has been a lot of years since I’ve gone to a football game.  I’d forgotten how hard those darn bleachers can be!  Next week we’ll definitely bring a blanket to sit on.


Travis is number 70 (right next to the kicker).  I am very proud of him for his dedication to the commitment he has made to his team.  His grades have to be kept high.  They practice every night after school.  He walks home because Julie has a day care and his dad is a fire fighter.  They’ve told him they would find a way to pick him up from school but he has chosen to walk the almost 5 miles home and counts it as an extra workout.  I’m very proud of him.  And the stinkin’ part?  Have you ever smelled a 13 year old after a game of football?  Enough said.


Last week I decided to make a big change in my life.  I keep promising myself that I will get in shape.  I keep promising myself that I will walk a few miles every day.  I keep breaking my promises.  Last week I put my money where my mouth is and joined a fitness club.


On day one I met with a trainer to be evaluated and had a fitness program set out for me.  Day two found me back at the gym to be shown how to use the machines.  Day three had me returning on my own for my first workout.  It felt so good!  They have showers there but I was in a hurry.  So I hustled out and headed for work.  I was very proud of myself. 

It is a good thing I work alone.  At some point  I raised my arm to grab something from a top shelf.  Phew!  I was so stinkin’!  I know… too much information.  But it is my blog so I’m entitled.  And yes, I returned to the gym two more times last week.  I am very committed.  Wish me luck and send deodorant…

Thursday, September 24, 2009

7 interesting (I hope) things about me that you don’t already know

Sherri at Matter of Fact challenged her bloggy friends to share in an award by telling 7 interesting things about themselves that others didn’t already know.  That’s like a double dog dare!  Or like telling me I can’t do something.  I just can’t walk away from a challenge.  Thank you Sherri for the dare.

1.  Never tell me something is too hard for me to do.  I will kill myself proving you wrong.  We used to have a very steep terrace here (Notice the word “used to”?  It is now flower beds.)  I was mowing and was close to the terrace.  Hubby said “I’ll get that hun, it is too steep for you.”  I don’t think so!  I mowed that damn terrace and proved him wrong.  And I never made the mistake of getting too close to it again.

2.  I started drinking coffee because I was insecure.  Yep, you heard me right.  I was on my second job (only stayed with my first job three months, but that is another story).  As a very unsure of myself 18 year old, I was uncomfortable on breaks because everyone else was standing around drinking coffee.  So I got myself a cup and held it and pretended to drink it.  Eventually I actually started taking sips until I became an official  coffeaholic.  (sip, sip, ahhhh)

3.  I began college the year I turned 40.  People told me it would be too difficult starting at that age, holding down a full time job, plus having 2 children in high school and 1 other in college already.  (refer back to number one)  I enrolled and proved everyone wrong by graduating 5 years later at the top of my class.

4.  I flunked Geography and almost flunked History in High School.  I hated it!  And I always regretted it.  Even though I majored in Business Administration in College, I took enough History classes to almost have a minor in History.  I guess I was making up for what I squandered in High School.  This is one of the many reasons I like Intense Guy's blog so much (one of the many, many reasons – it is one of the best blogs every!)

5.  My mother-in-law gave me my first drink of alcohol ever – and I was only 16 at the time!  Boy friend turned hubby took me to me his parents.  I walked into the kitchen and the first thing his mom did was offer me a high ball.  I had no clue what a high ball was, so I took it.  Unfortunately, I liked it! 

6.  When I was a child I would hide so I could spend my time reading.  My favorite hiding place was under the basement steps with a flashlight.  One time the book was so interesting that I didn’t hear dad calling for dinner, and when I did finally hear him, I ignored him.  I’ll always remember the whooping I got all the way up those stairs into the kitchen!

7.  I have a wicked temper.  I once dumped a glass of wine over hubby’s head because I was pissed.  Another time I threw a shoe at him, missing him and almost taking out a beautiful set of french doors.   Now that I’m more mature, I just slam doors and stomp off for a nice long walk.

So there you have it.  Seven things about me that you didn’t already know (at least most of you didn’t already know).  Anybody up for the challenge?  If so, grab the award below and go for it! 


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Gloomy day pick me up!

The weather has been rainy, dreary and in general just kind of crappy.  There is nothing better on a rainy, dreary and in general just kind of crappy day than to get a surprise.  I LOVE surprises!


Hubby always gets the mail in the evening after he feeds the sheep and leaves it on the steps for me to bring upstairs when I get home from work.  I often wonder how we came up with such a strange routine, but we did and it seems to work for us.  So Monday evening was no different than any other – or so I thought.

I came in from working in the loft on some embroidery projects and sure enough, like usual, the mail was there on the steps for me.  But it wasn’t the usual bills, and opportunities of a lifetime to buy the cure to end all that ails you and only for 3 small monthly payments of $39.99.  Instead, I was greeted by not one, but two, envelopes addressed to me!  And the names of the people who sent them were familiar names.  Names of people I read about every day.  Names of people I’ve become very fond of.  Imagine the smile that spread across my face.  It was huge!

I ripped open the one from Pennsylvania.  Yes!  My very only photo calendar.  A calendar with gorgeous pictures in it that make me sigh, smile and shake my head in wonder of the beauty.  And then I shake my head in wonder at the beauty of the person who carefully made it and sent it to me.  Thank you Iggy from the bottom of my heart.


Did I mention that there were two special envelopes in this mail?  Well, there was!  The second was a beautiful – and I do mean beautiful – hand made card from Jeannie of Jeannie's Happy World.  I was stunned. 


As is often the case, the photo doesn’t do the card justice.  The sentiment is “Life gives you many reasons to smile”.  Jeannie certainly gave me a reason to smile.  The card is made of layers of beautiful fall colored papers and butterflies, embossed, ribboned, and pearled.  On the inside is a beautiful bible verse from Matthew 11:28

“Come to Me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you Rest.”

And then, the most special of all, a personal note from Jeannie.  Thank you so much Jeannie.  Anyone who has followed my blog for any amount of time knows it has been a difficult year for me.  As a matter of fact, the anniversary of my mom’s death is coming up in a few short weeks. 


And here we have two special gifts from the hearts of two special people.  Life is good.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Somebody has a birthday….


I just know somebody has a birthday today….

marmite jar

I’m looking all over for clues as to who….


Is this a clue?  I wish I knew…


Kids… are kids a clue?

marmite kid

Does she mind this one and clean up his poo?

marmite on toast

A heart of gold she has – I know this, I do…

marmite love

Happy Birthday Marmite Toasty WE LOVE YOU!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Picture Perfect?

We had an impromptu family get together Sunday. Did you know Sunday was Grandparents day? Me neither. Out of the blue son Greg called and invited themselves over. And he even suggested I invite Tessa and Julie (and of course their families too). I took him up on his suggestion. Of course none of us knew it was grandparents day. It was just a good day to get together.

Tessa and her kids could make it. Julie? Not such a good idea. They have the creepie crud going around. Staying home for them is a really good idea.

Remember now, I had no plans for company. So how does that go… drop, punt, kick? You get the gist. While Jim was swishing bathroom stools (please tell me how they get so gross when there are only two of us here – on second thought, let’s not go there) I took stock of the cupboards and make a grocery store run.

It was a “picture perfect” day. The menu was kept simple on purpose. We provided grilled burgers and hotdogs, baked beans, chips. We had Mex-Tex dip for appetizer. Lots of soda and Beeritas for our thirst quenchers. (Beerita and Mex-Tex dip to follow).

I had no plans to take pictures – but how can a grandma resist? They were swinging, playing in the sandbox, climbing trees and just being so picture perfect cute. I HAD to take pictures!

I have to backtrack here to several months ago. Jim was very proud of some pictures he took. I can’t even remember now what they were of… but they were totally AWESOME! And they turned out to be totally NON EXISTENT! Because there was no card in the camera. And the camera kindly flashes a message that says “No Card”…. hint, hint. I got a lot of mileage out of that one.

Flash forward to Sunday. I took some awesome pictures. Almost 2 year old Reagan flashed me some killer looks. Allen and Anna posed while climbing a tree. James took his turn in the same tree, trying to keep up with the much older Allen and Anna. Got some shots of Tess, Greg and Alicia sitting and chatting. Even got a picture of Greg and Jim together – I could see how much they have come to look like each other. And guess what…

You think you already guessed it? Surely not. I’ll bet you are going to guess there was no card in the camera. Come on folks, I wouldn’t be that stupid! I already made fun of hubby for that mistake – isn’t going to no way happen to me.

All I’ll tell you is that I don’t have any pictures to share. I’ve yet to figure out the reason why. I think Whiskey ate them.


Ok, I promised two recipes:



12 oz. can limeade, 3/4 cup Tequila, 3 beers

Mix all ingredients together in large pitcher. Add ice until pitcher is full. Serve over ice.

I like to serve this because they taste oh so good, and one pitcher goes a very long ways. I’ve never seen anyone “get stupid” when drinking this drink.


Mex-Tex Dip

1 large can refried beans, 1 carton (6 oz) sour cream, 1 pkg. taco seasoning, 1 bunch green onions (chopped), 1 tomato (chopped), 1 can black olives (sliced), 1 pkg. (8 oz.) finely shredded cheddar cheese (I like to shred my own rather than use the pre-packaged “plastic” cheese).

Spread refried beans over an entire pizza pan. Mix sour cream and taco seasoning together, then spread over the refried beans. Layer the remaining ingredients in order. Serve with tortilla chips.

no card – no card – no card – no card – no card

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Saturday Stuff

It was interesting to read all the blogs yesterday, remembering 9/11.  It truly is a point in history when time stood still.  For myself, I was sitting at my desk at work.  A coworker popped her head in and I’ll never forget the shocked look on her face.  I thought, OMG somebody died.  That was understatement.  When she told me what had happened my heart froze.  There was no television to turn on.  Little to no work was done that day.  Anyway, we will always remember.  And as always, God  Bless America.


A not so new anymore blog friend of mine gave me not one, but TWO awards last week.  In My Mind Its Funny lives in Missouri, like me.  It is fun following her blog about an insane world of raising kids, dogs, husbands and owning a restaurant. 

Here are the two awards and I really appreciate receiving them.  It is nice to know that sometimes a comment is helpful or just makes a person feel good, even if for only a moment.

BlogAwardLoyal theupliftingbloggeraward

I simply can’t choose a person or two to offer this award to.  Every single comment means a lot to me.  I spend way too much time on this computer just checking back to see if I’ve received a comment.  I know that’s silly, but I LOVE comments!  They make me feel GOOD!  So I offer these  two awards to everyone who comments, even occasionally, on my blog.  You are a loyal friend and you uplift me and I THANK YOU!


For Chicagolady in answer to your comment about the lyrics to Little Rabbit Foo Foo – here you are!


Little Rabbit Foo Foo,
Hopping through the forest
Scooping up the field mice
And boppin' 'em on the head
Down came the good fairy and she said
"Little Rabbit Foo Foo,
I don't want to see you
Scooping up the field mice
And boppin' 'em on the head.
I'll give you three chances,
And if you don't behave
I'll turn you into a goon!"

The next two days the same thing happens – and then:

Little Rabbit Foo Foo,
Hopping through the forest
Scooping up the field mice
And boppin' 'em on the head
Down came the good fairy and she said
"Little Rabbit Foo Foo,
I don't want to see you
Scooping up the field mice
And boppin' 'em on the head.
I gave you three chances
And you didn't behave
Now you're a goon! POOF!!"
The moral of the story is:

Now ya know.


A friend of mine who comments on my blog occasionally sent me these pictures of HER deer!  She certainly put mine to shame.  Carole, aka Landlvr for those who used to chat with us, took these photos at her house.


In her comment she said,

We have a doe here that had triplets. I feed the doe bread. When I see them out by the crabapple tree in the backyard, I open the door and throw out a couple pieces of bread then go back in. I'll watch out the window and in a few minutes mom is up there eating it.


The fawns like laying in the yard in front. One night they were right in front of the porch laying down.

There are definite benefits to living in the country.  Look at the sparkling water just beyond  where the deer are.  Thanks Landy for sharing these with us.  I took some bread out this morning and put some on the ground a little closer to the house than the deer usually come.  (Charlie the squirrel will probably eat it)


Have a great weekend everyone and if you can, take a second to thank God for what we have and ask him to protect us during these troubled times.  I’ll have to admit I find a need for prayer much more often these days.  It really is a need – it’s not something I’ve said to myself, “Hey Deanna, you really should pray more”.  It is hard to explain. 

Friday, September 11, 2009

Lest we forget...

Pledge of Allegiance
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
God Bless America
Please take a moment to bow your head in prayer in rememberance of all those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001, and for all the brave men and women who lost their lives in an effort to save the survivors.

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Today was one of those days.  You know, a day when you need to do things you don’t really want to do. 

Hubby had to have what has turned into an annual colonoscopy.  He keeps developing polyps and they keep removing them.  Sure wish we could figure out what he is doing to fertilize those little suckers!

We drove into town through the foggy Missouri River bottom.  It was a nice high fog, not the thick pea soup kind of fog that we often experience during the early morning hours here.

Even with the fog, we got to the hospital plenty early.  They checked him in, asking all the appropriate questions (of things already in their computer) and then sent us on down the hall so Jim could humiliate himself in one of those oh so cute don’t move or your tushe will be exposed robes. 


Hospitals have a unique smell and sound.  I listened to the beep, beep of the monitors that was coming from behind each and every curtained area.  The nurses wear tennies or the rubber crocks that have become so popular.  Sneaking up on a person is no problem for them.  And each of them have a little cart that holds a little computer to tap in all the personal history information that should already be there since you gave it all to them only a year ago.  In this day and age, I’ll  never understand why they can’t just say “I have your records from last year, has anything changed?” 

But heck, they were sweet as pie and it doesn’t hurt to answer all their questions. 

Nurse:  Has any of your mom and dad’s medical history changed?

Jim:  No, mom still has Alzheimer's and dad is still dead (he can be somewhat of a smart ass at times)

Kim, a good friend of ours works in Outpatient Surgery.  As they were rolling hubby down the hallway to have unspeakable things done to him, Kim came over and gave me a big hug.  Have I ever mentioned how wonderful hugs are?  There is nothing better.  She kind of grinned and said, “I told them Jim is a good friend and I didn’t want to hear his personal history and I sure as heck didn’t want to see his hiney”.  Did I mention Kim is a good friend?

Now I had 45 minutes or so to kill.  So I closed my eyes and listened.

Somewhere I heard a little one cry.  Not a baby type cry, more like a toddler.  And I had to wonder what type of tests or surgery was this little one facing and why?  I hope it is nothing serious.  Then I heard the soft voice of her mommy singing “Little rabbit foofoo, hopping through the forest, scooping up the field mice…”  In my mind I could envision her holding up two fingers and bouncing them as the bunny hops through the field and then scooping them down.  Then I thought, what a strange song to sing to calm a child down.  I mean think about it, the rabbit is abusing the mice and the good fairy ultimately turns the rabbit into a goon.  But who am I to judge?  The child must have been fascinated by the two fingers bopping around because she quieted down to contented silence.

As I walked around the area to get a cup of coffee, I noticed one curtained area had 3 or 4 people hovering around.  I thought to myself, “this one has to be a lot more than a simple colonoscopy”.  Mentally I said a little prayer of thanks and good wishes to all the others.

In no time they had hubby back with me, safe and sound and groggy as hell.  Doc came in and said “yep, once again we removed polyps, see you next year” (or something like that).

Have you ever watched a drunk trying to get dressed?  It really is funny.  By the time I had propped him back up several times, it was time to weave our way back out onto the streets, with an attendant following along to make sure Jim didn’t take a nose dive between the hospital bed and the car door.  So far so good.

Did you notice that I spared you the details of the day before colonoscopy preparations?  You’re welcome.  All I will say about that is, hubby was famished by this time.  So we stopped at Country Kitchen for breakfast.  After several cups of coffee, and a chicken fried steak type breakfast, (and me reminding him to sit up and stay awake) we headed for home.

Hubby did the head rolled back, mouth open, with the occasional snort back to reality thing all the way home.  I do love that man lol.  At one point he came back to reality long enough to say “wow  that was great, the colors were so vivid!” and then he was out again.  Darn it, I want some of what he’s smoking.

So here it is with the morning not even over and I feel like I’ve put in a full day! 


OH      MY     GOSH     I just looked up from my typing and saw something move.  Sweet.  It is our family of deer, mom and her twins, come to visit.  They have been foraging for heavens knows what in our orchard of two cherry trees (we had big plans at one time but you know how that goes.)  They are probably eating the lower branches of the trees.  Maybe I shouldn’t be so happy to see them?

A doe and 2 fawns off in the distance.

Do you see them in amongst the trees there?  (makes a mental note to wash my windows)

 deer walking around the orchardI’m still in my office snapping the shutter and think, I’ll bet I can sneak onto the front porch and get a close up.

Now I couldn’t make this next part up if I tried.  I carefully open the squeaky front door (another mental note, grease door hinges) to sneak outside for my photo opportunity.

A squirrel in the exact place the deer were

Charlie?  Where did you come from?  Where are my deer?  Have I mentioned that the squirrels have taken over?  Well, they have!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Dog Days

I’ve been in sort of a melancholy mood. My get up and go has got up and went, if you know what I mean.

I can’t quite put my finger on what is wrong. Is it the weather? Is it my Lupus? Is it old age – no wait it can’t be that! I’m still young. Is it the end of summer blues? Heck, who knows. I just know I’ve not been myself lately.

There is one reason why I’m in a stewing, not so great, mood, but I’m not able to put that into words yet. I’m still sorting through it in my own mind. If I would put my feelings in words right now, I would come across as a very selfish, uncaring person. And I’m really not that way. I promise – I’m not selfish or uncaring. So, that post will wait until I come to terms with how things are. (Got ya wondering now, don’t I….)

Another creature who is not at all himself is my little Chihuahua, Whiskey. Whiskey is a very aggressive little demon. I finally gave up buying him toys because he becomes very possessive of them and then proceeds to tear them up within days. I swear he has shark teeth.

I relented last week, though. I happened on to this cute little giraffe toy and bought it. So what if it is a few dollars down the drain. Right? Imagine my surprise when Whiskey took to that toy like no other – in a good way! He sleeps with it. He carries it with him when he comes snuggle with us on the couch. He hasn’t made a single move towards ripping its head off yet. And to top that off – he shares it! I can take giraffey toy from him and smooch on it and then hand it back and he is ok with it! What’s up with that! This demon dog has taken my head off for much less transgressions.

And he posed with it for me. Whiskey is a quite the camera hound. He loves to get his picture taken. So, here he is – demon dog and toy.



Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Historic Treasures

Historic Treasure One.  Good friends. 

I met “Snowman” Dennis in chat quite a few years ago.  We quickly became friends, both online and in “real” life.  So that makes his and his wife’s friendship historic. Right?  And they are definitely a treasure.

Dennis, Kris, Deanna, Jim

Dennis and Kris live in Wisconsin (Ya!) and we live in Missouri.  We’ve visited each other’s homes quite a few times.  This time we decided to try something different and meet each other halfway.  So we met at the Amana Colonies in Iowa.

Historic Treasure Two.  Amana Colonies

Antique Store

The Amana Colonies are a National Historic Landmark and one of the America’s longest-lived communal societies with its history beginning in 1855.  The residents were fleeing Germany from persecution and poverty when they came to the states.  Their communal life where everyone had a role to play and no wages were earned was one of simplicity and humility and worship.  This way of life ended in 1932 during the Great Depression.

Shopping in the General Store

General Store

Today The Colonies are a national treasure with the buildings restored to their 1800’s simplicity.  We were constantly grinning at the friendliness of the many shop keepers.  Yea, that’s right.  The colonies are now a tourist trap made up of shops and restaurants. 

Deanna in front of an old building

I didn’t buy anything Jim – really I didn’t!

Jim and Deanna sitting in a HUGE oak rocker

Lilly Tomlin, eat your heart out.

We were able to step back in time mentally as we’d walk past the simple buildings or the many old barns.

Old colonial building

Grape vines growing on trelises anchored to the side of a house


These historic old barns are so cool.  I can just imagine what they were like when these were working farms


Trellises are anchored to almost all of the buildings for grapes to grow on.  Sometimes there is a cut out area for the windows and sometimes not.  I’d need the cut out myself.

Historic Treasure Three.  The weather. (ok not much historic about weather, but it was definitely a treasure)


Small vineyards were sprinkled in and amongst the buildings.


Clear skies – gorgeous weather!

We couldn’t have placed a special order for better weather!  The evenings actually dipped into the 40’s.  During the day it was nice and warm in the sun and a little cool in the shade. 


Everywhere we looked we saw sunflowers, coneflowers, and grape vines.

It was fun laughing, eating, shopping, drinking, laughing, shopping, drinking, eating, eating, shopping…  with Dennis and Kris.  We always laugh until our belly hurts when we are with them. 


Did I mention that we ate a lot of food?  The restaurants served German food family style.  Lots and lots of potatoes (usually fried) sauerkraut, pancakes, fried catfish (whole, not filleted), pork, German chocolate cake, cheese cake… Oh my poor diet!

Deanna, Kris and Dennis holding boxes of bottles of wine

There were quite a few wineries.  But I’ll have to say the wines are just “ok”.  They were mostly very sweet with a twang of some kind that we couldn’t quite place. So why in the world do we have so many bottles of wine!  I have this thing that when I go into a place to taste wine, I feel guilty if I don’t buy. 

Lake with lilies and clouds reflecting in the water        

Lilly Lake.  I like how the clouds intermingle with the lilies.

We enjoyed the trip – but it is definitely good to be back home!