Monday, April 28, 2014

A Week at a Glance...

Already into the "next week" but thought I'd catch up with last week's happenings.

Erin, Chris and Baby C went north to spend the holiday with friends in Moscow. Saturday was our DIL Karissa's birthday and her confirmation into the Catholic church.  The weather was a picture perfect Spring day.
Baby C liked the Easter Bunny better than Santa
Easter was a quiet day.  We attended mass and shared breakfast with Matt, Brit and Mr. T.  I'm not embarrassed to say we spent the rest of the day in comfy clothes, watching movies and napping. Yes, we caved...
Just relaxing.
My favorite part of Mass today was after communion.  The music started playing "How Great Thou Art" and I felt a rush of tears.  I cannot explain why but this was one of my Gram's favorite hymns and I felt her unconditional love hold me close.

We finally have the office done - check that box.  We found a nice rug for the boys to play on and Papa very smartly thought ahead - low pile rug making it easier to locate the Lego's played with in the office.  He's a genius I tell you!

We've gone through files and documents, shredding like a shady government official.  It feels so good to have things in order and clutter cleared.

The living room and dining room walls are now painted the two tones of gray.  The white trim just seems to 'pop' off the wall.  I'll be looking around for some white curtains to complete the look.  Everything looks so clean and fresh.

I started painting into the kitchen but didn't get far.  Sometimes my achy bones just need a break from the stretching and bending. I honestly believe I look forward to going to work to get away from all of the physical projects we have going at home.

Mike and I have an ongoing project outside.  He started moving the pavers surrounding the new fire pit.  It's like having a 500 piece puzzle sitting on the table.  You walk by and see a piece you've been staring at forever and it fits perfect.  Mike made major headway earlier last week but ended up with blisters on his knees from his knee pads and had to let them heal.  Gradually the patio is being put into place.  Soon we will have to go get another load or two to complete the patio area.
New Fire pit buried in ground and early stages of moving pavers
When I returned to work I was greeted with a beautiful bouquet of flowers from our boss for Admin Assistant's Day.  It's so nice to be appreciated for the contributions you make every day.  My coworkers are so much fun to be around.  I was referred to as "secretary to the people" because I don't limit the things I do to management but enjoy helping my coworkers as well.  I'm so thankful to have a job I enjoy while feeling like I'm making a difference.

Our dear friend Randy celebrated her birthday this past week as well.  Happy Birthday!  Tomorrow we are driving to McCall for lunch.  She's never been up to Valley County.  The weather looks like it will cooperate and we plan to stop whenever we want to take pictures.
33 years of friendship - 1981-2014

Our weather lately has been alternating between sunny spring-like days and April showers.  We've seen it all.  I went out on a limb and planted tomatoes already - but do not hesitate to cover them on some of these cooler nights.

I'm motivated to walk regularly and am excited to do T-25 every day.  I seriously watch the 25:00 minute clock count down and am often amazed to see how fast it goes.  Between T-25 and my 2 mile route with Ruger, I am easily meeting my 10,000 step goal nearly every day.   Even at work - it's incredible how much walking I do in a day!   I hope the regular activity will help build my energy.  I have to keep on schedule.  Erin and I have multiple bookings for Natural Touch Photography in July, July and August.  How exciting!

Tonight my mind is with family and friends back in the Midwest and South.  The spring storms are frightening and leaving so much devastation in its path.  You are all in my prayers.  Be safe.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Simple Moments

I'm home alone.
It doesn't happen often. 
I turned off the TV and opened my book.
Just the sounds of my favorite old clock ticking peacefully...
And the rain.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter Blessings

There are days when you stop and count your blessings.  Easter is definitely one for reflection.  Mass this morning was uplifting.  Hearing "How Great Thou Art" brought me back to my childhood Methodist Church, listening to my Gram playing the hymn on the old upright piano in the church basement.  I felt her unconditional love.  I felt so blessed.

We are indeed blessed to have three healthy children, each who has met their soul mate and starting their lives together.  We are fortunate to have them living near, and able to interact with in-laws and share grandchildren.

Mike and I have nearly 32 years together.  It's good to stop and reflect on your strengths, the positive things that have brought you to where you are today, and even the trials you have survived together. Its all part of the puzzle that makes you who you are at this point in time.

I realize we don't have control of what other's think of you.  I try to be the best person I can be.  When I someone has the wrong perspective of me I like to find the source of the misconception. It's human nature to defend yourself against a wrong. Sometimes it just escalates and nothing you do goes the way you hope.

After weeks of struggling to understand, replaying events in the past, you finally just throw your hands up and say "God I've done all I can do!".  It doesn't make your heart any less heavy because there is a missing piece but you can't force someone to listen when they aren't willing.

You do what you can do.  Move forward.  Be the best you can be without changing the person you are. You drop to your knees and pray.  You reflect on your blessings and know the answers will come.

May your blessings be plentiful and your prayers bring answers.  Happy Easter.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Neighborhood Loss

This morning I learned our quiet,little neighborhood has one less resident.  Jon passed away 2 wrrks shy of the age of 69, ending his battle with cancer.

Jon joined our neighborhood, sharing a wave or greeting when he was out walking his beloved dog.  He had a strikingly deep, friendly voice.  I commented once "Jon has a radio voice" and learned he was a former radio host on 580AM KIDO - The Jon and Chris Show - for more than a decade.

While dealing with his cancer, Jon faced so many challenges, including one I shared on my blog here. Neighborhood Fire.  This winter he dealt with the passing of his beloved dog Roo.  Mike befriended Jon, knowing to knock and enter his house for a visit.  We enjoyed paying it forward every winter, shoveling his driveway and walk.  We've watched his deterioration progress when he walked by - first a slow shuffle and eventually in a wheelchair - breathing in a little fresh air.

I'm grateful Jon's no longer suffering.  He is with God, and perhaps his special dog. Kathy, Jon's family and friends are in our thoughts and prayers.  May you find strength in God's guidance.

Rest in Peace Jon 

Saturday, April 12, 2014

From Top to Bottom...

Since our empty nest status has returned we've been talking a lot about having four bedrooms and only using two.  It would be lovely to have a single story home but then how would we get our exercise? 

Changing our mailing address or even our zip code is always a possibility when you are a military family, but moving after you've been in the same home for 12 years is something to seriously consider.  Our last major move was from Wisconsin - employment relocation...  left my home state, parents and siblings behind.  

Any how, I have slowly painted my way through the majority of our upstairs.  Guestroom, Grandson's room, Office and Hall Bathroom.  Even the upstairs hallway has been repainted.  We're talking ceilings and trim as well.  

Guest Room

Grandson's Room (with Ruger photobombing...)

Hall Bathroom (Hi Ruger!) 

And the office...  

We tore out the old carpet and pad, replaced with flooring purchased in 2011...  (don't judge).  We rebuilt shelves in the closet and hung new doors.  As of this weekend, we even have new blinds hung.

The Hall is painted  (partially as you can see the two colors in the corner) - but the second story of the hall/foyer will require paid assistance...  I'm not sending my husband up on a ladder to paint the three 2-story walls and I'm afraid of heights.  As we are heading downstairs we have more projects.  The living room and family room are partially painted and the stairwell will get new carpet and the banisters stained.  

By the end of the summer we will finally return to our master bedroom to paint and remodel the bathroom. No to worry - we won't run out of things to do any time soon.  We are saving the kitchen for last.  

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Happy National SIbling Day!

With 'little' brother Michael and 'little' sister Diana

I'm so fortunate to be the "Big" sister to these two!  
How lucky for Michael to have TWO big sisters in his life!  

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Spring in my Heart

Today our sweet daughter brought me flowers.  She knew I've been struggling. She brought our youngest grandson and the flowers to brighten my day. 

I can keep busy with my projects to occupy myself and keep my mind engaged but once in awhile the heart gets tired of being ignored.

Thanks Boo.