Brenda's Blog

Every single word, verse, poem, prose, etc. within The Tea Room (unless otherwise stated) was written by Brenda Dwyer and is protected and copy written.

Do not copy, reproduce or otherwise share this content without express permission by the author. 2008/2009

"Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be."

- Abraham Lincoln


Friday March 25, 2011

And the cold winds blow and blow and blow. The soft rains fall and shower us with their tiny drops. The crocuses break boldly and proudly through the earth that has held them captive all winter and the sun shines a little longer than it did just a few short days ago. Spring is in the air and there is no truer testament to it than the animals that inhabit our world. They frolic and play throughout the day ... their "courtship" that will lead to new creation when Spring is in full swing. I smile thinking of the newness of everything again and I can't help but be thankful for being here, still, to witness it one more time. God's glory is all around us!


Wednesday March 9, 2011

Oh happy day! Oh happy day! It is raining and dreary and I can smell spring coming! The temperatures are hanging in the upper 30's to low 40's and I am encouraged! There is always much to do and it never seems like there is EVER enough time to get it all done and yet I thrive on the challenge. Every morning I have the initial chore of dragging (literally) myself out of bed ... it has been this way since I was in my teens. I am just not a morning person and yet at the same time once my sleep cycle is complete I can not wait to see what lays ahead in the hours to come. The "not knowing" is what gives me goosebumps and makes me smile. It motivates me in a way that is hard to explain. Every day is a "this is the day that the Lord hast made, let us rejoice and be glad in it" day and I know that the Lord is masterful, his plan is perfect and the day is bound to hold wonderful moments! Some days bring the realization that even in the midst of crisis GOD IS RIGHT HERE WITH ME; yes, there are days that this particular revelation is brought into a very sharp focus. I have people all around me who are hurting or have loved ones who are hurting and my prayer list is growing. Life goes on and on and on even when there are times that you wish with all of your heart you could suspend the moment or the day. Oh happy day ... a new season is emerging and God is right here with us to watch us as we greet it with open arms!


Wednesday February 2, 2011

I am in the office. Alone. It is quiet, serene, peaceful and every nuance of soft tranquility I could care to express. I am more productive when left alone, simply because I have no interruptions ... or if I do, they are controlled interruptions. Now, barring any natural disasters, I shall enjoy this small package of noise-less abandon and relax. Is it possible to relax and work at the same time? You bet it is! I love to work, it is the gift that keeps on giving. The sheer ability to work is such a tremendous blessing in and of itself. I thank God everyday that I have arms and legs, eyes, ears, mouth and brain that are functioning at a level which is necessary to complete my tasks. These moments help me to think clearer and draw nearer.

There are tree branches everywhere you look in our new store. Instead of explaining I think I would like it more if you came in to see for yourself. The branches in my office have birds. The birds have wings and the wings ... well, the wings (in flight) remind me that the "launching" of our new store is right around the corner and so I must heed the call of ... more work. Ah, such are the meanderings of my brain on a day when everyone else is snowed in and I find myself in a blissful, familiar place. :)


Monday January 31, 2010

February is just a day away! We are getting closer to Spring every day. This past weekend was full of long anticipated fun for me. No, I didn't get away on vacation (2 days WOULD NOT be near enough). I did, however, drive down to Springfield (IL) picking up this passenger and that along the way and by the time we got there we had a car full! 7 of us ultimately made our way to my mom's to celebrate her 76th birthday with her. This will be automatically penciled in as a yearly trip now. I was able to see my older brother and most of his family. I hadn't seen Greg and Lisa in four years. I hadn't seen Melissa (their daughter) in six years and Brad (Oakland A's relief pitcher - he starts spring training this week) wasn't able to make it. Melissa brought her 17 month old twins and they were such a riot to watch! Who knew "twin-speak" could be so adorable? I brought with me my younger brother, Glenn along with my daughter, Jasmin and her entire family. It was good times and good conversation for all. There are times that I get a little melancholy thinking about just how fast everything is moving. Time seems to get away from us and before you know it years fly by. One topic discussed was my inability to remember birthdays, anniversaries, etc. It has always been this way with me. I keep telling myself that one of these years I will remember to get everyone's dates on my calendar and send the appropriate gifts, cards, etc. (So far, I have failed every single year). It used to be so easy when I was still at home with my parents. My mother's address book was full to the brim of all such important data. One thing though ... back then people may have died or moved but you rarely saw a name changed due to divorces and mixed families that shared multiple last names. It can all get so confusing. I never miss my children's birthdays - I was there for their birth so it would be really bad if I forgot those dates and I have known my mother's and brother's birthdays all of my life but I can't tell you their other important dates. Come to think of it, I'm sure they aren't aware of mine either. Somehow this gives me some comfort. Silly me. Until next time ...

Wednesday January 19, 2011

We moved! We are now at 524 S. Main Street in Middlebury and can I just say, WOW! This has been a lot of fun (I did not expect that) and a lot of hard work (that, I expected)! I find myself eagerly creating my new 2011 files and storing them neatly away. My new office is a happy place. It makes me smile when I walk in ... it makes others smile when they walk in too. Hopefully, this new space will speak to my creative side and we will all reap the benefits. lol This whole journey has caused me to pause and think ... where is the Lord leading us now? Every new step is full of discovery. I feel unbelievably blessed. I can't wait to see what's around the next "corner". In the meantime ... may the Lord bless you and yours and may you find happiness on your journey as well. Slow down and realize the blessings!

Thursday December 30, 2010

Christmas day came and went ... the weekend was filled with children giggling, babies gurgling, parents catching up and friends wishing us well. It was a beautiful time for all! I wasn't expecting all of my children until after the holidays but they surprised me and started tumbling in Christmas evening and into the day after and the house became a home full to the brim of love and laughter. With the exception of one child and his family, every other child and grandchild from both sides of the family were represented between the two days. Looking back I can't believe it all came together somewhat like a finely orchestrated event. Just a few days before Christmas I had finally lugged just one tree up from the basement and adorned it with consideration of the little ones coming with unbreakable ornaments and other unbreakable finery. Little bits of "Christmas" were placed here and there to bring every room to attention. For the first time in years I had more than enough helping hands to afford me the ability to sit down and actually visit. I won't forget this Christmas for a very long time to come. The very best part of all was that it was the first year that I could think of dad and not cry. It just felt like he was with us. I hope and pray your Christmas was a true blessing to your soul. May your New Year be full of the same.

Thursday December 9, 2010

Christmas is right around the corner and I am not ready. Not even close. I have been sick for over a week now and am just drained. Business is busier than ever. Can we all say, "Brenda needs a nap"? Well, I do. I need a nice long soak in the hot tub followed by a nice, quiet, long nap. Doesn't that sound wonderful? Wouldn't it be ever so nice if I could pull it off? But I can't, the phones ring, the dogs bark, the husband beckons, the children call, the grandchildren text, my mom chimes in and it's just another day in the life. So, speaking of Christmas ... this is what I want ... a day of peace and not just for me ... for everyone, everywhere. Peace on Earth ... it's an old-time favorite and I can see why.

Thursday September 16, 2010

Tomorrow would have been my mother & father's 54th wedding anniversary but since he passed 16 years ago the memories of celebrations past will flit in and out of my mind and bless my day. I wish he were here to see all of us now (if only for a moment); what has become of my brothers and myself ... I wish he could glance in and see how happy my mom is now with her new husband (as long as it wouldn't cause him pain). I wish he could see how his grandchildren have grown and how they all have children of their own now. I wish ...

I am so very thankful to God for blessing me with my family, for blessing me with my memories, for blessing me with the feeling of thankfulness.

May you find a day full of thankfulness to revel in and may you be blessed.

Thursday September 2, 2010

Today has been more than challenging and quite frankly, I don't think I'm up to it.

It has been two months since I blogged and that is just a very small representation of how time bankrupt I am these days. I have literally worked myself into a place of discontent. I have no life outside of work and I am plain miserable.

Sound familiar? It probably does to a lot of people which is very sad in and of itself. I don't know how I got to this point but somewhere along the way I found myself so immersed in "busy-ness" that I no longer had contact with friends or family ... I wasn't participating in life anymore. I was so focused on how to help my husband build the business and make it better and stronger (notice I did not say "bigger"). In hindsight I have to say that it has been one of the darkest periods of my life. I forgot about balance. I forgot to balance work with play. My blood pressure spikes, my heart races, my headaches and body aches follow me wherever I go. I am just not happy.

How do I turn it around? Prayer. It's all I know. This has been my own doing which means if I continue on this path it will be my un-doing.

It's definitely time for some divine intervention. Prayer will be the avenue to peace; balance will follow.

In conclusion, let me say that I hope I didn't "bring you down" while reading this but instead that perhaps even while stuck in my own brand of "mire" I have encouraged any of you who find yourselves stuck too - to be inspired and start climbing up out of it with me. Have a blessed day!

Wednesday June 23, 2010

Off and on throughout your week you may experience what I will call "truth" moments. To me, they are moments that for whatever reason, my senses send me into a complete and full realization that the Lord is tugging at my heart, at my soul to enter into a place of peace. I am keenly aware of what's going on around me at these moments lest I miss something important. They are my most favorite moments of the week. I can be sitting at my desk working and then suddenly feel drawn to Him ... to pause and be thankful. I love these moments of silent (to everyone else) praise where my soul just seems to "sing" one tremendous note of joy after another. I long for them. They, in a very simplistic way, help me to take quick inventory of feelings or emotions I may need to work on. Prayer seems to just blend in to these times of being with the Lord and it's so hard to explain now that I find myself putting it down in words but I realize that the Lord may see me in a very different light than I see myself. Oh what an interesting thought ... after all, his understanding is not our own. I just love the moments of communion I have at the feet of my Lord and I also love that every one of us has a place there. God is so good!

Tuesday June 22, 2010

Okay, so I find myself needing a secretary. (like, yesterday!!!) I just have so much on my plate that my plate must surely be broken underneath it all. Just this morning we went to press with our first issue of our paper's new look. We are so excited about it! I can't wait to see it in print! To take a look just go to and see for yourself! I have met so many kind and wonderful people this past month. My life seems to have gained momentum somehow and I feel as though I am being propelled into the future. It's an exhilarating feeling! As always with any major change in life there are a myriad of emotions that you go through ... fear (of the unknown) trepidation (of hurting vendors/friends due to change) reluctance (enough said) excitement (uncanny, isn't it?) the growth of faith (to take the leap) and ultimately sheer joy (in the accomplishment). I hope that whoever you are that you are realizing your dreams and loving the place you are in right now. God bless! See you soon!

Thursday June 10, 2010

I just had the most delightful conversation with new friends. It is always great to meet new people, isn't it? The conversation wrapped itself around one of my favorite subjects ... dogs. Our dogs, their dogs ... dogs we once had but have since passed on from our lives in one way or another. It was good, easy conversation. Sometimes it is easy for me to really focus so much on my work that I tend to miss out on things going on around me. My mind (during our conversation) was recollecting this moment or that and thinking of all of the time my faithful companions wait for me patiently in the house as I toil away at my desk out in the office. Bob and I both have been blessed (yes, blessed) to have met some very unlikely and yet wonderful canines throughout our lives that have taught us as much as we taught them ... if not more. It's 5:14PM right now and although I haven't blogged in quite some time I really think I want to shut down for the night and go hug my pups. I hope you're having a wonderful June so far ... first day of summer is right around the corner!!! God Bless!

Thursday April 22, 2010

I can not believe that it has been so long since I last blogged. So much happens in such a short time. I remember Timm (my late husband) always saying "first ones in, last ones out" ... we had a yacht that we kept moored in Douglas Michigan right across Lake Kalamazoo from Saugatuk. Every April he would look forward to getting the boat in the water although there were years we made it in as early as March. Being on that beautiful vessel was like being transported to another world. I miss her. The best sleep I ever had in my life was on that boat. The lapping water against the side of her would cause her to gently sway you back and forth ... side to side (think of a hammock) and it was simply luxurious! It has been 3+ years since Timm passed and in a lot of ways it seems like yesterday. Every Spring my body longs for Lake Michigan while my responsibilities and my new life keep me firmly rooted on Middlebury ground. Perhaps this year a short visit would be a nice thing to do for myself. There are friends there that I haven't seen since just weeks before Timm's passing. It would be nice to reconnect and recall shared memories.

On another front, "Scooty" has taken his first independent steps and is off and running. Jasmin, I'm praying for you honey! I admire my daughter's unrelenting patience and tenacity; having a teenager, a pre-teen and a toddling baby just can't be easy! :) That thought just made me think of something else ... I better make sure I "baby-proof" the house before they visit next time. That little guy has always been especially curious. I can only imagine what new disasters await my cherished little trinkets around the house. lol It's okay ... that's what they make glue for.

Bob is getting ready to move into the new office and I am shocked at how much there was to move and we're not even quite finished! There is still much to do but he is hoping to be there permanently after Monday. I will miss him here ... but I am SO glad he's going at the same time. We are really hoping that the new location will give us the added exposure we were hoping for.

Well, time to get back to the business at hand. Then if I'm especially blessed today I will find time to visit the garden! Now that put a smile on my face!

Friday February 5, 2010

I remember sitting in a small lake side restaurant in Frankfort, MI and feeling just plain lazy. It is a memory though. It is a memory because it is something I rarely get to do. My life is so full that moments of total and utter relaxation are very few and far between. I want to be kinder to my body, my mind, my soul this year and from now on. I want to find time to nourish the "complete" me. Just for one minute I want to stop and devote time to things I like to do, things that make me feel good, I want to know that I am not only working hard to help my husband but that I am working hard to RELAX! lol! That just strikes me as funny now that I wrote it!

Thursday February 4, 2010

"I want a cell phone" declared my granddaughter.

Honey, you're too young for a cell phone.

"All of my friends have them" she says as she emphasizes her truth with a fist pound to the table.

Then you're obviously hanging with the wrong friend, I counter ... wondering if she will get that I used "friend" in the singular tense. I mean come on people ... why are 9 year olds running around with cell phones stuck to one ear and an iPod earbud stuck in the other? There is something really wrong with this picture.

Care to comment?

Monday February 1, 2010

I am the world's worst grandmother!!! That's it! I am sending myself to the corner for punishment! My mom and my granddaughter share the same birthday. I called my mom to wish her well (2x, even) but neglected to call my precious Yzell!!! Where was my brain??? Yzell is 2 years old now. A beautiful, bubbly baby girl that knows no bounds to happiness. She is one of those little ones who just ALWAYS has a smile on her face! My heart was broken as soon as it dawned on me that I had let the day slip by without calling her. She lives in Joliet, IL with her daddy. Sometimes I am reminded that I need to slow down and recognize the importance of every day ... so that I don't miss out on such BIG things. Perhaps I will just spend the rest of the year making time for sweet little moments with her "just because". My grandchildren don't see much of me due to the distance between us and them. Everyone leads such busy lives and we all find it hard to coordinate our schedules to make things happen. I believe it is time we made the extra effort though. These days can never be recovered ... these months ... these years. I am going to go now. I know of a precious little girl out there that will be tickled pink to take a phone call from her nana.


Friday January 22, 2010

OK! The paper is done! Hallelujah! I had NO idea what I was going to write about ... now I fully understand "writer's block". Thankfully I am not having that problem right now.

I was talking to my mom the other day and for the first time that I can ever remember she mentioned her own mortality. I mean, yes, we all know that one day we will pass from this life, but as I listened to my mother (who is fast approaching her 75th birthday) I found there was a reason for her comment(s). Her mother passed at the age of 75. I am not sure I was even aware what age my grandmother was when she passed but I all too clearly understood my mother's passing concern. I have heard many people comment on their own mortality. Some out and out fear what comes next ... some are just so sad about ever leaving here that they never really LIVE while they are still among us.

I was riveted to my mother's words ... I found myself listening to every intonation, every little nuance of her voice (as much as I am capable of) ... hoping I wouldn't find fear lurking anywhere. I didn't. (This would make my mom laugh since she is all too aware - and protective - about my hearing challenges).

I hope my mother has a wonderful 75th year with many more birthday celebrations to follow thereafter! I can't imagine life without her. She is the most incredible woman I have ever met! I LOVE YOU MOM!!!

Now ... time to go live the day!!!

Monday December 28, 2009

May there never be a Christmas morning that I forget ... the love of Father God and the love of a man I called daddy. Father God gave me the greatest gift I have ever received years before I was ever born ... and then he gave me a daddy who passed from this earth on Christmas day in 1994. Both have taught me things in my life I will never, ever forget and that I will forever and ever cling to. Every Christmas for me will be especially beautiful as I reflect on these things. I pray your Christmas was magical and full of hope and wonder and may this coming year find you exactly where you want to be in life ... at the precise moment you dream of being there. God bless you all!

Friday December 18.2009

HO HO HO Merry! Merry! Wow! Christmas Cheer is bigger than it ever was! Because I have been so very busy I haven't had a chance to really get out much. Was I ever surprised when I finally did! Even though people may not have much money this year and even though so many are without homes or even the most essential basics in life ... EVERYONE seems to be of good cheer! This makes me SO happy! Believe me, I have my down moments too, we all do ... but it sure is nice to get out and hear MERRY CHRISTMAS (heartfelt & bold) instead of Merry Christmas (whispered & timid) ... I love being here ... now ... in this time to witness this kind of Christmas! I was down and it picked me up, cheered me up and set me on a new path with a smile on my face. I am hearing heartfelt greetings everywhere these past few days at a time when I needed it most. LOVE IS IN THE AIR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday December 14, 2009

I just love the Christmas lights that are popping up all over the place. I especially love the ones in our home. It's not so much that they are any different than anyone else's lights ... it's just that they are right here and I can sit and enjoy them in a warm cozy atmosphere for as long as I want to (or more accurately: have time to). So ... this is just a little "thank you" to everyone in the area whose homes I pass by that are decorated with Christmas lights. They make me smile and bring joy to my heart!

Monday November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving is behind us now (although we give thanks all year long) and Christmas is on the way! The streets are dressed in their winter best with twinkling lights and beautiful wreaths adorning windows and doors. I just love Christmas and I especially love the warm, fuzzy feelings the season evoke. So many people are in my prayers this year ... people I don't even know ... all of those that are out of work and worried. I pray that as a community we all embrace those that are less fortunate than we are and share whatever we can to brighten their day and lighten their hearts! Speaking of ligtening hearts ... thank you to my grandsons Jason and Scotty for being especially silly (just like your nana) today and bringing great joy to my heart! I love you so!

Tuesday November 24, 2009

I did it! I started a project I have been thinking about for years. Although I am excited, I keep thinking that the project I really need to start is a DIET. I have packed on the pounds this past year! I feel like a balloon that is just stretched to its limit. My poor body. :( At the same time all I can think about is my annual holiday baking. There are certain foods that only get prepared once a year in our house and this is that time of year!!! I know for a fact that I will not have the willpower to resist eating on Thanksgiving and Christmas and I also know that by the time New Year's rolls around I will be rolling around with self-loathing. :) ... why am I smiling? Because, I really don't take my weight issues that seriously although I do realize that I should maintain a healthy weight. Having said all of that ... I think that in 2010 I would like to see just how svelte (my preferred word for fit) I can be. lol Ooo ... there I go challenging myself again. :) Come 2010 it's on ... I am going to track my progress or lack thereof and document it all. I would love a little company ... the only thing better than challenging yourself when it comes to trying to lose weight is challenging others to do it with you.

Thursday November 12, 2009

Wow, zooooooooommmmmmmmmmm we are off and running! It's time for the holiday frenzy! Wait a minute ... take a deep breath ... inhale - exhale. We are all good. There is no need for a shopping frenzy. We are in the midst of an economic condition that allows us to use our creativity to come up with gifts that are especially meaningful to our loved ones. No need to get caught up with the marketing madness that inundates us from every paper, radio or TV station ... let us instead condition ourselves and our families to step beyond the "newest" gadget out there and go instead to what is more meaningful ... what do our loved ones need that we can provide them with. Sometimes it might be as simple as a long-desired hug. :)Whatever it is, let's slow down ... not be part of the "craziness" and stress that occur this time of year and instead develop a plan and then get creative on seeing it to its completion.

Okay ... now go! >:)

Wednesday November 4, 2009

(fun = feeling beautiful???)

The tone of my blogs lately seem to be taking a turn for the negative. You know, some days are just plain ol' NOT FUN. Now I am the first to admit that there are never any promises of fun in any given day, however, life is a lot more bearable with fun intermixed than not. I am just tired. I keep having those "When did I grow OLD" days when I first look in the mirror in the morning and don't recognize the person looking back at me. It saddens me and yet I know that every single day is a gift to treasure ... I just wish my face and body reflected more of the "me" I feel myself to be on the inside. A smile can only add so much radiance. lol I think when you reach your 30's you start having those silly little ideas like "maybe if I just start standing on my head for 20 minutes a day gravity will be a little more gracious". :) Have you ever found yourself considering a little nip here or a little tuck there? Dermabrasion even? We have so many options before us to try to reclaim the "beauty" of our youth and yet I am told (by women much older than I am) that there is true beauty in aging. I am told that as you grow older you grow wiser, more sure of yourself ... more radiant ... more beautiful. If that's true why is it we dread looking older? I would love to hear your comments on this. Please write me and let me know what you're thinking. It's not even noon yet so there is much potential left in my day. I wish for YOU a very beautiful (& fun) day. :)

Having said all of that, let me follow with this: I believe it is important to realize we all have feelings about things once in a while that we wish we didn't. I know vanity to be a horrible thing ... a destructive thing. We are inundated with mass marketing constantly pounding into our brains what "beauty" looks like. It is a lie! It always has been. Outward beauty is not what matters regardless of what we're told. The beauty industry thrives in all economic climates because we have been "brainwashed" into attaching so much importance to it. Perhaps it truly is time to get back to basics. Let us all concentrate, instead then, on the beauty within and appreciate the process of growing older, wiser and more "beautiful". Any takers or contributors now? WRITE ME! Let me hear YOUR thoughts!

Tuesday November 3, 2009

Today is Tuesday and I find myself wishing it was Friday. I must have woke up on "the wrong side of the bed" this morning. Time for introspection. Why would I want to wish time away like that? Each day, each hour, moment, second is precious and is a direct gift from God. To think otherwise is to be unthinking. I need to adjust my attitude and take in all of the blessings around me and be thankful that today is just Tuesday and I still have (God willing) an entire wonderful week ahead of me. :) Blessings!

Monday November 2, 2009

Hello November! It's been a while since we saw you last! The weather today is a bit chilly. I have 3 and 5 month old kittens running around in the yard and my thoughts are with them. Nice warm boxes have been lined with straw and blankets; they just love them! The chicken coop has fresh straw coming also ... time to give all of my hens and my rooster a protected shelter from the elements. Inside the house winter coats have been taken out of storage and hung on closet bars along with mittens, scarves and caps. The trees have shed most of their leaves and the firewood is stacked. Yes, November ... here we are at the beginning of the holiday season and you know me well ... I love it when you come around! Happy November tidings to all!

Tuedsay October 27, 2009

Time flies even when you're not having fun! Who knew?!

Let me qualify that first statement ... I think life, in general, holds so much more "fun" in it than not. Sometimes you just have to look at things a bit more objectively to realize the fun in them but it's so worth it! We have been very busy (Thank you Lord)! Every day brings new challenges. I am so thankful for our customers ... I feel I am really forming bonds with many of them. If not for them my life would be recognizably different. They provide me with fun, folly, joy and they balance it all out with the trials and tribulations that come with living. I am thankful that they take time to share with me. Sure, time flies when you're not having fun ... but it flies when you are as well! One more reason to try to make every moment count. :)

Tuesday October 13, 2009

Three years ago tonight I went to sleep with a horrible feeling in my heart that something was wrong. The very next night I anxiously awaited word that my husband was okay. He wasn't. I lost him to the waters of the very lake we found such great joy in. No matter how much time passes it still seems as though it was just yesterday. That day the path that I had been on took a life altering turn that eventually led me to my current husband; my Bob. I adore my husband. Lord knows we are full of imperfections yet we strive most every day to hold each other up and to be thankful for each other. Time is so very precious. Each moment, a gift. The one constant in my life that keeps me strong during the really rough "seasons" all of these years is God. I thank God every day that I know Him. I can't imagine going through this life with all of its ups and downs without knowing that He is always with me. May your today and tomorrow be as blessed and happy as your heart desires!

Monday October 5, 2009

Where oh where have all of the butterflies gone? It seems like short days ago I was enjoying all of the varieties of butterflies in my garden. Now they seem to have gone off to find their folly elsewhere. It is time to shut off the pumps, clean out the ponds, collect the little bits of decoration here and there that won't tolerate cold temps so well and "fall" into fall. :) When one chapter closes, another one always opens. :) I look forward to everything God has to offer in His beautiful creation ... and our very small portion of it here. We are so blessed by the ever changing beauty that surrounds us. It is Monday ... it is full of beauty ... I can't wait to see what the rest of the week holds! (For now tho' ... I just want to "take in" that which blesses our today.)

Tuesday September 22, 2009

As much as I'd like to, I don't always wake up looking forward to the day. This is a real personal struggle for me as I wish I could wake up every morning with a smile on my face and great anticipation of what lies before me. Trying to think of remedies to this dilemma can sometimes prove frustrating in and of itself. Do you ever feel like you're "dragging your feet through sludge" as you "walk" through your day? Some of my mornings start out that way but I am finding that the nights I get to bed earlier and then waken earlier ... those are some of the best mornings ever. Quiet mornings are great for reflection and spending time with the Lord. Well, it's almost 9AM and work beckons from every side of my keyboard. :) Time to get back to it!


Monday September 21, 2009

Arrrggghhhh! It's almost the end of September ... how does that happen? Christmas will be here before I know it. I am happy to report tho' that we have begun our holiday shopping and have one of our grandchildren "all wrapped up" already. Now ... only 8 more to go, so if we manage to do this at the rate of one per week we should be right on time to get everything wrapped and under the tree. Ahhh, reflection, planning and perspective sure come in handy. :) Happy Monday!

Monday September 14, 2009

My younger brother Glenn is in the hospital ... the victim of Bronchitis and asthma combined. Poor baby. I pray he has a speedy recovery! Other than that there is too much work-related stuff to mention and my "to-do" list (of the personal variety) is getting longer and longer. I need a vacation. Could someone please call my hubby and let him know. :)

Tuesday September 9, 2009

Happy Tuesday! It's sweater weather! I hope you're staying nice and warm and enjoying the Fall colors!

Friday September 4, 2009

Swine flu is on the rise and it seems to be closing in on our area. Bob and I just read an article tonight that projects a fairly bleak forecast of how many will be infected with the virus. Please, please make sure you wash your hands frequently ... cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough. Try not to touch your nose, mouth or eyes unless you have to and then try to use a kleenex when doing so. All of these little things may make you less at risk. I hope you enjoy your holiday weekend ... and stay healthy! Although I don't normally do this in my blog ... call Bob about RGF ... it's proven to kill many different influenzas and may be able to help protect you from the swine flu.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

My, my, my ... where has time flown off to now? Here we are greeting September with wide open arms. Bring on the Fall Colors! It has been a very mild summer. I am looking forward to a glorious Fall. The fall colors should be in full swing here shortly. I am looking forward to a burst of color as we've never seen before! Rich golds, deep burgundies, bright oranges, true greens and vibrant hues that will just "knock your socks off" if you only take the time to notice. May you find yourself pausing to gaze upon the beauty that surrounds you throughout this coming Fall season. God bless!

Thursday August 27, 2009

I have decided that I love blue butterflies. They are absolutely beautiful. Butterflies, in general, make me smile ... but blue butterflies transport me. I hope that somehow, some way you happen upon a blue butterfly today!

Mon August 24, 2009

Today is my birthday! I am 51 years young today and I am so thankful for each and every year God blesses me with! Birthdays are so fun! Sometimes, if you're especially good, you get to have birthday cake and ice cream. I still enjoy that particular treat as much as I ever did. Today will be spent in the office but that's okay. It's a gorgeous day and I eagerly anticipate the phone calls and e-cards that will/have already come my way. I never take any of these for granted and am very humbled by the fact that people take time out of their busy day to wish me well. The most puzzling thing though is that I really don't deserve it. You see, everyone that knows me knows that I am the world's worst when it comes to remembering birthdays, anniversaries, etc... I always have been. I try so hard to write them all down and put them on this calendar and that but they still somehow elude me and I am just miserable when I find I've missed yet another important day in someone's life. For whatever reason, everyone always tells me not to worry about it ... (sigh) ... no matter how old I get ... some things just never change. :) Happy Monday!!!

Friday August 21, 2009

It's Jasmin's 31st birthday! It's so hard to believe! I look down at my hands as I type this and I see that they do not appear to be so young anymore. The veins are more visible and they look "tired". I remember 31 years ago ... a much younger pair of hands holding my daughter for the very first time. It is hard to believe so much time has passed. How is it that days like today bring my attention to it? For the most part I still feel like I'm in my 20's ... but one glance in the mirror states otherwise. I thank God for all of the years, the months, the days and even the moments that He has blessed me with. Life is but a journey. Thank you Father ... and thank you so much for 31 beautiful years with my daughter!

Wednesday August 19,2009

Bob woke me up this morning so that I wouldn't be late to my BNI meeting. I am just not much of a morning person, this I will confess. I am more of a evening person. I used to work the 5PM to 3AM or 7PM to 5AM shift and I LOVED it. I sure do miss those days. My body was so much more well-adjusted. Every night when I go to bed my body tells me it is much too early to be in bed and every morning when I wake I feel like I should just be going to sleep. After 3 years, you would think my body would adjust but it hasn't. I have thought of numerous humorous ways to remedy my problem but they only work in theory and not at all when actually executed. Oh well (sigh) some day I will feel rested again ... I just know it! What ever happened to "perky" Brenda??? ROFL

Friday August 14, 2009

What a beautiful day! It is a little overcast and mild. The breeze is a sweet welcome. Today Bob and I are attempting to stir the beginnings of vacation thoughts around in our heads. He hasn't taken one for 15 years and me ... well ... I was on a virtually never-ending vacation up until shortly before I met him. It is hard for him to separate himself from that which he is most passionate about ... work. I am encouraged that after 3 years of marriage he is at least willing to "think" about it now. Yes, it is a beautiful day!

Wednesday August 12, 2009

My niece had twins today!!! I have a new nephew and a new niece! Grady Michael and Karli Anne arrived this morning as anticipated and both babies and mom, Melissa are doing just great! Facebook is a wonderful appilication on the web ... we already have pictures and reports from mom, dad and grandparents! How exciting! I wish I could be in Bentonville, Arkansas right now. Well, I hope your day is filled to the rim with good news! See you soon!

Tuesday August 11, 2009

The paper is coming! The paper is coming! Thank goodness it's not coming until next week though. Time just flies! I can't believe we are already coming up on the 3rd saturday of the month! Some of the leaves on our trees in the yard are already beginning to turn colors and fall to the ground. I haven't taken the time to write all of my articles for the paper yet so I am really going to have to get on the ball. I guess that means I better get off of here and get started. Have a great week!

Friday July 31, 2009

I am so ecstatic that it is FRIDAY!!! I can't wait to see what the weekend has in store for me and my hubby! If we're really lucky maybe the weather will hold and we can go fishing!!! I sure hope so. Although ... our fishing stories are starting to take on a life of their own which really isn't surprising because the things that happen to me while we're out there fishing are just so bizarre! lol One of these days I will get the hang of it and start catching big fish ... until then, as long as I keep catching moments that cause my hubby to bubble up with laughter, it's "all good". :) (Happy 33rd anniversary Greg & Lisa!!!)

Thursday July 30, 2009

Thank God for friends! Today started out nice and slow. Around breakfast time I remembered some paperwork that I had promised to a dear friend and set out to deliver it. It just so happened that I had my camera with me and realized that while I was there I needed to say "good-bye" to a magnificent animal that I used to have the pleasure of owning and is still boarded there. Jay (my horse) is being moved this weekend to his new home. My heart breaks knowing that I won't see him again. I am a better person because of my interaction with Jay. Although time has not allowed me to spend near the time with him that I had hoped for nor have logistics allowed him to be right outside my window ... I have carried him in my heart all the while and will continue to do so for the rest of my life. I verged on taking him for granted though because I always "just knew" he'd be there when I went to have Daisy groomed or was just passing by. I snatched up the camera and met him out in the pasture. He was the perfect model. He did all of the things that I have loved watching him do over the years. My good friend, Shawn, was there to wrap me up in a big hug afterwards and although our conversation as I was leaving had nothing to do with horses ... I was blessed by that hug and the fact that I didn't cry like a baby until I got back home. I will love you forever Jay ... thanks for the memories!!! God speed!!! (Take good care of him Carrie!)

Tuesday July 28, 2009

Buddy, you were my hero. Is that strange to say about a dog? I sure hope not. My heart has embraced many animals over the years ... that's for sure. Buddy you stand out amongst the most special of all. You are only a year old and yet every day you have greeted me with your big wide smile and your stout little stance. Your muscled little body could put any bull dog to shame. I never knew a Boston Bull Terrier personally prior to you ... I have been missing out! Circumstances dictated that it was better for you if I found you a home where someone could devote more time to you. An extremely difficult decision to come to but even dogs should live a full, happy life. I have gotten so busy and as a result you would just wait for hours on end for whatever time I did have to give you one on one. You taught me more about unconditional love than I can even describe. Your smile never faltered, your willingness to please never abated. I sent you off to a new home today and have entrusted you into the care of two people who have promised to spoil you and love you beyond reason. I hope they do ... you deserve it. I will miss you little Buddy. You will always have a place in my heart! Frank & Bev ... I am really counting on you to keep your promises!

Monday July 27, 2009

I am thankful for the day. Here's what's on my mind ... forgiveness. Families, as much as they may love each other, are comprised of individuals who all have their own minds, their own wills ... regardless of age. As I grow older, and therefore my children grow older along with my parents, I am realizing that families are like an ever-changing, ever-evolving entity ... and yet (even when times are most challenging) people will put their whole hearts into keeping a family together.

It takes love, forgiveness, mercy and kindness to keep a family strong.

It takes dedication, perseverance and forgiveness.

It takes forgiveness (are you paying attention yet???) ... and isn't that an action that should not be reserved for just family but for our neighbors, our friends, the people that we meet day to day in a myriad of situations. Just a tiny bit of forgiveness and kindness could go a long way these days ... just imagine what a lot could do!

Thursday July 16, 2009

I thank God for you. YOU. Yes ... you. Is this your first time here? Have you been here multiple times? Well, whatever the case may be ... I thank God for you. You bless me by coming here. You encourage me. Every time that I pause to check our statistics to see how many are visiting I am humbled by the numbers. You have been very gracious, very kind. I would like to encourage you ... share with me. Drop me an email by using the Guest Book ... let me know your likes, your dislikes ... I especially want to hear YOUR stories, your triumphs as well as your trials. Please, whether you share in my beliefs or not ... this small room is for YOU, for us. I am waiting to hear from you. :)


Thursday July 9, 2009

Accountability is a gracious thing. It is the measuring stick of our failures, as well as our successes. It keeps us on track. It enriches us as human beings. Accountability is grace in action.

Tuesday July 7, 2009

Another beautiful day and all I can think is ... I want to go crawl back under the blankies. lol We are so spoiled by the little things, aren't we? Take air conditioning, for instance. It is such a wonderful luxury! It's so easy to take it for granted ... until it breaks down. So it is with life ... so easy to take it for granted until something goes wrong to remind us, jolt us back to what's really important. I am a blessed woman. I am married to a heating and cooling contractor so if our air conditioning ever goes out, there is someone right here to fix it. I am even more blessed because I have a life contractor so if something in life goes awry, I have someone right here to fix it. God has a way of showing me, each and every day, some of the smallest of things that impact us all in the largest of ways. I am so glad that at the age of 50 I am still seeking, still asking questions and still learning. Yes, it is another beautiful day!

Monday July 6, 2009

It is a new day and I am thanking God for it! Hallelujah!!! Have you ever had that day that came after a "storm" in your life when the mere NEW-NESS of the day was your saving grace? I think we can all identify with that feeling. Every single day we wake up, as far as I am concerned, is a precious gift. A renewal of spirit and being comes with the dawn of each and every morning. JOY is a wonderful emotion, isn't it? Joy can cause your heart to "sing", can cause a "spring" in your step ... can propel you on to many wonderful moments. The potential to making great memories can be found where JOY is! I am thankful for JOY, I am thankful for so many things today. I am especially thankful that I have one more day to live and love and I am anticipating great things to come from having JOY in my heart.

Tuesday June 30, 2009

How in the world did we get to the end of June already? It seems to me like it was just January. Time flies, we all know this. It seems like the older we get, the more we realize just how precious each and every day is. I have realized that there isn't much of anything, if anything at all, that we can take for granted. Each moment is a gift. Each day, a blessing. I only hope that as each year passes I really realize just how much I have been blessed with all of this time and that I can reflect back and see that I haven't wasted that which I've been so generously gifted with. May July find us all happy, healthy and taking the time to enjoy TIME.

Monday June 22, 2009

It's another beautiful day. It's very hot outside, which is why I'm feeling so blessed to be working inside today. :) The weekend was great! Bob had a great father's day ... all of the kids came over to surprise him. The camera was clicking away. The paper is out and it's a day to exhale. I can't wait to go on to other projects now and start the grand shuffle all over again. Now, as long as the computer behaves, today has wondrous potential!!!

Friday June 19, 2009

The day started out rainy with thunder and lightening to greet us. I love days like this. The gardens look fresh and green, the ponds are full and the sunshine is starting to peek thru the clouds. There may be a tornado watch outside but inside things are nice and cool. :) I am looking forward to the weekend and am hoping that I can find the time somewhere to really relax and enjoy our home. Happy Father's Day to all the great dads! Speaking of Father's Day ... time to go bake for my hubby who happens to be a wonderful father! Love you babe!

Wednesday June 17, 2009

Well, well, well ... here I am again. It's been quite a while since I've been here. How is it that I get so busy that I can't find time to do my blog??? lol I guess I need to move it up on my priority list a bit. We have been so very busy which has been a tremendous blessing. Things are just moving right along. We have hired a couple of new people and that's been exciting! It is always fun to watch things grow. :) Family life is wonderful and the animals on our "farm" are happy. Let's hope we remain steadfast in our commitments to our friends (which include our customers), our family and most importantly, the Lord, for without Him we would have no direction.

Thursday June 4, 2009

We have been so busy in the office I haven't hardly had a chance to write for the paper. Our bull mastiff keeps begging me to come outside and play! (I'm trying)! Things always have a way of falling into place but this past two weeks have sure been challenging! Our vegetable garden is barely growing this year. I am not sure what has it so stunted. Perhaps a lack of loving care. Hopefully the rains will come soon and soak it good and by that time I will have managed to go out there and tend to it. I miss the days outside in the garden. I'm not complaining though. God has been so good to bless us with so much work.

Thursday May 28, 2009

The weather fooled me again! It was overcast all day long but not a drip of rain fell from the sky. I didn't water my garden because I thought for sure it was bound to get watered today from the heavens. Taking a moment out to read the weather report (which I should have done earlier today) I see that there is no mention of rain for the next few days. My poor garden .. now I feel negligent in not watering it. :( I suppose it will be okay in the long run. The office phones are ringing off the hook again. I have articles to write for the paper and the house needs my attention (Spring cleaning) .. I really need an assistant to help me out. Okay .. back to reality. lol Hope you're having a productive, prosperous and blessed week!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Happy Wednesday! It is a partially sunny day outside and a bright sunny day inside! lolAnita and I are in the office having our daily girl talk while the boys are away. It is so nice sometimes to just reconnect on a girly level and not be so intense about business. It sure brings joy to my heart! Jasmin called this morning and reported that everything on her homefront is just peachy. The baby coos all of the time trying to make conversation. I talked to Nick after that .. their newborn daughter is doing really well but is not as quiet and content as Maliyah was. They are all adjusting to less sleep. :) Brian's closing on his newly built home is on Friday and he is so excited to finally be moving in. Cory is working for the Braidwood Nuclear Plant now and loving it. All is well here. :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Here I go again .. neglecting my blog. Hardly seems worth bothering with some days though. I know from looking at our web stats that this page doesn't get much traffic. :) I was thinking about just deleting the page but my kids have asked that I keep it so I guess it stays. :) Memorial Day was a very relaxing day for us. I know I spent the day thinking of my dad, a few of my friends and even other relatives that have served in one war or another.

May 13, 2009

This is too embarrassing. Here it is two weeks since I last wrote in here. The time isn't the embarrassing part, the part that's so hard to take is that I don't think anyone noticed. lol Therefore, I don't feel too bad about the fact that I have to dismiss myself now (phones are ringing) and say ... hope to see you soon!

April 30, 2009

With the good, comes the bad. Life is not a perfect existence. It seems that we are all so wonderfully equipped to handle the good when it comes. Smiling comes naturally, laughter bubbles forth ... kind words roll off of our tongues. Bad times ... well, we all know bad times are just that ... bad. I wish I could get to the place in my spirit to where bad times didn't affect me and my only response would be to just try to hug in even tighter to God ... knowing that He would hold me and shelter me from any true harm. I am not quite there yet ... but I strive to be. We all have our own stories to tell of "bad" days. The best "bad" days of all sometimes turn out to be the most blessed. Well ... time to pick myself up, dust myself off, remind myself that this may be the best day of my life (just in disguise right now) and start all over again. Blessings!

April 29, 2009

Morning dawned roaring like a lion ... fierce and unrelenting. All I wanted to do was stay in bed for just another teeny weeny 15 or 20 minutes but NOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Work beckoned to me throughout the night ... every time I woke up I was thinking about my "to do's" for today. It was my most tangible sign of having a mind that is currently in "overdrive". lol Looking back to just short hours ago when my day began a smile has begun to form around the corners of my mouth as I realize the highs and lows I have experienced thus far. Each day, I think is absolutely unique. I marvel at the wonder of it all. Things in the office are happy and fast-paced, looking out my window I can see things in the garden also seem to have an urgency in their process of growing. Life goes on and I am thankful to be breathing it all in. I hope your day is blessed also. :)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Another day has dawned. Today I am thanking God for my good friend Laurie. She has a way of saying just the right thing at just the right time. She is one of those people that can push your spirits over the cliff ... just to watch you soar! Some days can just be especially challenging. I mean it when I say some days ... sometimes things can just "get under your skin" and stay there for days in a row. In my case there are people that are causing great aggravation in my life right now. It can be overwhelming at times. I have found the Bible to be a place of escape for me. That book is so amazing ... it allows me to escape; all the while helping me to deal with all the things that are causing me angst. Looking forward to the rest of this day I feel better prepared to handle whatever it is that crosses my path. I am hopeful, I am trusting, I am happy.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Last night I felt like I went to sleep on a cloud. I tossed and turned throughout the night about as much as I ever do yet when I woke this morning I felt filled with energy. Then the bomb dropped. Seriously. I will explain in a bit. How is it that life has this uncanny way of dipping and rising, twisting and turning, taking us thru gnarled trails of bramble that end on paved paths of roses? Today is a "gnarly" day for me. As is often the case with husbands and wives, a conversation took place this morning, misunderstanding raised its ugly head which escalated voices and sent hearts plummeting. Barbed arrows of very sensitive issues were shot and both parties came away wounded and are still, as of this minute, in their perspective corners licking their wounds. I dare not be presumptuous about God but often I wonder if He isn't up there just shaking his head or even chuckling at the very ignorance of us at times. This too shall pass and tomorrow or at least one day in the future forgiveness will be realized, mercy will blanket us, love will overcome and life at our house will be back to it's usual state. (Note to readers: I purposely did not say "normal") lol :)

Monday, April 13, 2009

Have you ever had a really good idea that you were anxious to share and then something distracted you and in the very next instant you forgot it ... never to remember it again? Me either, but I probably will before long according to those in my family who hold the oldest genes in their bodies. lol I love long, warm, cozy talks with my mother. They seem to hug me and keep me feeling sheltered thru all of life's twists and turns. My mom has a way of making the gloomiest of days seem especially bright and cheerful. I am so very blessed to be her daughter. Although time and circumstance don't allow us to see each other nearly as often as we both would like, I pray one day the good Lord blesses us with an eternity together to just sit around and wrap each other up in love. Thank you Father, for my mom.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

I just finished updating the recipes in "Scents of Cinnamon"; adding a few for the Easter holiday. I pray we all have good food to eat on our tables. As I looked out my window just a bit earlier the snow was falling in little bits here and there ... for now it has abated again. :) Spring is "springing up" everywhere in spite of the snow and winter's last teasing bite. The crocuses and violets are peeping out all over the place and the colors seem especially deep and pure this year! Let's hope it is the beginnings of a very colorful spring and summer. There is much to do, much to consider and yet the only thing I am really concentrating on right now is food. lol I can hardly wait to go back inside and have breakfast. :)

I pray we all have an exceptional day today and I hope to be back on here tomorrow! (Lord willing)

Friday, April 3, 2009

I can't even tell you how glad I am that it is friday. I wanted it to be friday all week long! Today has been a cool, blustery day and tomorrow is supposed to be warm and wonderful. I want to jump in the car with the top down and let the wind wash all my cares away! The economy is really starting to cast a dark cloud around here and I'm sorry but I'm just not a "dark cloud" kind of girl! I refuse to let the plight of our county get me down. More than ever this is a time to "pull up our boot straps" and make things happen! We are currently running an ad to hire more people and I was just awestruck at how many phone calls and walk-ins we have had. My computer is full of employment applications and resumes being emailed in and the fax is getting a good work out as well. Our Chamber of Commerce meeting is coming up soon and I can't wait to see what innovative ideas those folks are coming up with down there. Next week is going to be especially great because this weekend I am going to play hard and gear up for whatever's coming! See you Monday!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

We have a baby!!! Jasmin and Scott welcomed Scott Wayne Black, III into the world at 2:06AM on Saturday, March 28, 2009!!! He weighed in at 7lb 8 oz and was a perfect 20" long. Mom and baby are both doing wonderful! Scott Jr just glowed when he first saw his son ... it was a moment I won't forget for a long time to come. Moments later when Jasmin asked him to go over and talk to the baby as they were working on him (he was born with the cord wrapped around his neck) I saw another sight that was just as precious ... when Scott timidly stepped up to the side of the table where his son was laying and looked down upon him ... tears just began to roll down his face. Love at first sight! What a glorious thing to experience! Poor Jasmin had to wait quite a while (probably seemed a lot longer than the hour it was) before she was able to hold her son and once she had him in her arms her heart was locked in forever ... I know my daughter loves with all her heart her two older children yet still, there is something to be said when a baby comes along that has been prayed for and anticipated for over 5 to 6 years time. She looked more peaceful, more content, more fulfilled than I have seen her look in a very long time. Thanks to every one or even one that stopped to say a prayer for Jasmin and her family. We are so blessed to have such a wonderful and gracious Lord!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

I felt compelled to write something today, although honestly, I'm just not in the best of spirits. Today is a gloomy, rainy day but that's not the reason. I love rainy days. I was thinking about my children and how they were each affected by the collapse of my marriage to their father more than 16 years ago. They are all grown and they all have baggage that they have taken into their relationships/marriages/lives. Sometimes I wonder what it would be like if we all determined to live our lives according to God's will and did things His way. If we could just think before we act or think before we speak ... how wonderfully different life would be. I suppose there is a place that exists like that. It is called Heaven.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY to all ye Irish!

Tuesday, already ... and over a week since I wrote in here last. Where does the time go? The weather the past few days has been beautiful and it makes it so hard to stay in my seat at my desk in the office. I feel like I want to go outside and get my hands in some dirt. :) It is a gorgeous day and I am thankful for it. Bob and I are tying things up for a newspaper we are beginning. The first issue will be in people's mailboxes on April 4th. It is so very exciting and so scarey all at the same time. Our local economy is suffering and we really felt that someone needed to do something to help our local merchants and business owners work hand in hand with the residents to boost it! Fear can not become the dictator of our lives. We know all too well from our own history that the only way to weather an economic storm is to keep our dollars circulating. If we don't we will begin to see our small towns decay and die off. Opportunity knocks! I, for one, am excited to see how much of an impact the people of our small towns can have in determining to forge ahead. Now ... where are my garden tools? :)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Hey there. I don't really recall what I did this weekend other than rest. Okay, maybe I didn't really rest ... it was more like resting from the things I usually do and doing other things instead! Bob and I went to the Home Show in South Bend this weekend and let me just tell you ... there are a lot of people out there looking for new things to do to their homes! Some of the booths were very informative, others were lacking. Some of the vendors were legitimate ... others seemed to offer a lot of "hype" on ways to save on your energy bills. I came away from that just hoping that people really research for themselves what others would have them believe is the best way ever to "save" every month on energy costs. Some of the booths were fairly impressive. I like the food vendors myself ... even though I didn't buy any food or drink ... it just smelled particularly good in that area. lol What else did I do this weekend? Oh ... I rearranged the house again. (My public apologies, darlin'!) I just love for things to always look fresh and new in our home and it just so happens that I have a knack for accomplishing it by taking things from here or there and mixing it all up in new ways. It's so much fun! The real bonus is that I get a chance to vacuum every inch of flooring, walls and ceilings all over again! Yea!!! Cleaning is so freeing for me ... it's good exercise, it makes the house smell wonderful and everything just sparkles! What's not to love? Once again Bob was my hero and wisked me away to a wonderful dinner Sunday evening to bring a perfect end to a perfect weekend. :)

March 3, 2009

I woke up this morning, went thru my usual routine, landed in a chair with a nice cup of decaf coffee (topped off with some Hazelnut Biscotti creamer) and listened to the rumination of my baby brother and sister-in-law. I couldn't help it but my mind drifted as they bantered back and forth and I realized how very thankful I am for being married to such a wonderful man. Bob has allowed me to take the past two days off to visit with my family who I don't get to see near enough. Their visits always bring a sense of melancholy. I love having them here but realize that it will be short and sweet and then I will have to let them go back to the lives they live with their children. Ke Sera. I feel in a way as if I have been transported to a slower pace ... a simpler existence. They have only been here since Sunday and yet they always bring a sense of refreshment whenever they are near. I love that. They are always a blessing to me. Family is such a precious thing. Perhaps when they have gone I will come back into The Tea Room and put to paper (if it were possible) the words to express how my family inspires me. Until then ... May our good Lord bless your every step!

Friday, February 27, 2009

The end of February is officially here. Where did the month go? I will tell you how I spent most of it. In a very undesirable way, that's how. I was sick. I knew it was bound to happen. I had just gotten over the flu when we were celebrating the fact that I was feeling GOOD again at a local restaurant and we got coughed and sneezed all over by someone in the restaurant that probably should have stayed home that day. That was followed by a trip to the store where it seemed every third person we passed (including babies) were hacking up phlegm or sneezing in our direction right about the time we crossed paths. I don't think anyone could have escaped without carrying at least a few million germs all over themselves. Yuck! Well, as life would have it ... I got sick. Really sick. I couldn't breathe, my nose couldn't stop running ... I just felt plain miserable. I am on the tail end of it now but let me just tell you ... February has not been very kind to me health-wise and combine that with possible peri menopausal issues ... I was not in the mood to do anything but lay in bed and sulk. Does this mean I laid in bed and sulked? Of course not! Show me a woman out there that can afford to do that and I will show you a single woman with no children. lol I do thank God for bringing me out of my gloomy slump! I don't think I could handle too many more days like those. I hope today finds you healthy, happy and thankful. Until next time ... take time to sing really loud, love truly and dance your socks off! See you in March!!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Oh Lord My God ... when I in awesome wonder ... consider all the worlds thy hands have made. I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder ... thy power throughout the universe displayed ... then sings my soul, my saviour God to thee ... How Great Thou Art ...

That is one of my favorite hymns. I have listened to it and sang it probably over a hundred times. To me, it is a song that lifts me up and reminds me that no matter what is going on in my small little world ... God is so much bigger ... so much greater than anything/everything else. Yes, Elkhart County is suffering right now. Yes, one in four people who were employed are now without a job. Yes, food pantries and churches are feeling a strain ... and yes, families; men, women and children are being displaced from their homes. Prayers are powerful. PRAYERS ARE POWERFUL. A little tiny bit of faith ... can move mountains. God bless us all.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

So, there I was talking to my daughter when I realized ... wow ... I hardly ever get sick! When I do get sick ... it has to be a beast of an illness to get me down. That photohydroionization really works (as if I didn't already know this)! I just wish every public store, restaurant, hospital, etc. were required to have them ... just think ... if they did they're wouldn't be very many of us getting sick! I am confident my flu would have lasted a lot longer (as in comparing notes with friends who had the flu at the same time) if I hadn't had it. I am thankful for it, believe me. Jasmin and I were discussing Cory at the time. My son Cory (who lives in Joliet, IL) is really sick right now and that is the utmost thing on my mind today. He is suffering from Asthma and Bronchitis along with severe chest pains. Please join me in praying for him today ... for his full recovery. I really appreciate it and I know you would really bless him. I faithfully await the good news that he feels much better! It is one of the hardest aspects of being a parent, I believe, when your child (regardless of how old they may be) falls ill and you feel helpless. I do not feel hopeless though. I have faith, therefore I have hope. Happy Wednesday!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Today is not unlike any other day that we've had around here for the past few months. I can see all too clearly why people take off and head for warmer weather during the winter months. Lately the gardening magazines are starting to pile up along with the many new ideas in my head. Paint seems to be key this year in the garden scape. I am wondering how I can apply that very thing to my garden. I saw a beautiful country cottage garden ... think New England ... and there were beautiful pastels that were "punched-up" with bright, gorgeous hues here and there ... and that's when the epiphany happened ... I can apply this to our garden! I know that the garden in the picture made me think of Easter with all of it's bright pastels, but for me the picture is just a launching pad. (Our garden is country - think western - themed). It may look more feminine and frilly when I finish but I think it would just enhance that which is already there and make it come to life. I can't wait to get started! (Honey, if you read this ... don't panic. I know what I'm doing.) :)

Monday, January 26, 2009

"I don't want to!" I remember my young voice answering in response to my mom urging me out of bed to get ready for school. I kind of felt that way this morning (all these years later). It was time to get up and come out to the office but I didn't want to. I wanted to just linger in between the comforter and the sheets and dream, dream, dream. Life's demands have me responding to the "have to's" instead of the "want to's" though. Seems like it's that way for me more often than not. That's okay. Soon SPRING will be here and I will be out nurturing the little buds that will spring forth in my garden! Oh, I can't wait! Bob will be wanting me in the office more than ever and I will be out playing "hookey" in the garden! :) Okay ... maybe only in my dreams but I still can't wait for Spring because the evenings and weekends are always open for gardening!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

It has been quite a while since I last wrote. I had fallen ill to a weird strain of (what I believe to be) flu. Bob seemed to be suffering from the same symptoms about midway thru and his are still lingering. It was a period of time that brought me even closer to God. It seems like when I'm not feeling well the first thing I want to do is run to Him because I know that He has the ability to heal me, to comfort me, to soothe me. I needed a big dose of soothing. I am so glad it is all behind me now and that life has returned to its "normal" state. lol

I pray this finds you and yours happy & healthy.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

So, today dawned bright and early for me ... around 8AM. lol I am finding as Winter lingers, so does my body ... in bed. Poor Bob, as much as he would love to have me out in the office first thing in the morning, he has found the woman he loves; loves goose-down. :) But, hey, what girl doesn't love goose-down? I feel so pampered when I have the goose-down quilt pulled up to my chin. Why couldn't I find someone to make me goose-down pajamas or a goose-down robe ... mmm. Just the thought makes me feel all "dreamy".

Yesterday I implored my family to help me out with this TEA ROOM idea. I asked them to be blatantly honest and to peruse the room and then submit their solicited criticisms. Thus far, I have only heard from my baby brother; k, so he's not a baby ... he's 48 years old about 6' 7" tall and looks somewhat like Grizzly Adams (google it!). Glenn has never let me down. Many times he has been the arm that has rescued me from murky waters. Thanks Glenni!!! Of course, he gave me glowing brotherly report ... and he also offered me the link to his very own ... (can you guess?) BLOG!!! Go figure! Who knew? So I had to read it and WOW, was I ever proud. He is such a big huggy bear!

The link to his blog (in case your curiosity is in active mode) is . By the way ... he did NOT ask me to do that (and I hope he doesn't mind). I have to go for now. Time to eat. My tummy is growling. See you soon!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Uh oh. I am not off to a very good start. Here it is the 3rd week of January already and I have only written in here twice. So sorry. Oh well, no one wrote to complain ... or comment ... or contribute. I feel so sad all of a sudden. Here's to better weeks ahead and I SURE WOULD LOVE TO HEAR FROM SOME OF YOU! Is there anyone out there???

Monday, January 5, 2009

Wow! Where did 2008 go? How did this happen, (again)? Seems like I just got kind of "settled" into the year and then TOOT TOOT BANG BANG WHOOPEE ... it's over and a new year is here. I think there are many people who are facing this year with trepidation. Wondering about their livelihoods. How will they pay their bills? Keep a roof over their heads? Perhaps it will be a year of relocation for many. Whatever your situation, I pray God blesses you in all your endeavors this year. It is a time for prayer, a time for thanksgiving (for no matter what we don't have ... we do have the ability to work towards something better), a time to embrace change, a time to be still and know that God is with us.

As I look back over the many thoughts I have put to paper I see that I do try to keep God at the center of my life. People have failed me time and again in this life ... God has never failed me. I am not "religious" by any stretch of the imagination. I seek only to learn more of love and kindness and faith and working with my hands & my mind. I yearn to be a good pupil in forgiveness. Many times I feel a tugging of my heart for the people I am blessed enough to have on this path with me. Although we are all individuals and different and diverse in many ways, we are still basically the same. We all want to be loved, wanted, needed. We all want to feel good inside. We all want to embrace happiness. We all want to leave a legacy of love here when we pass from this life into the next. Whatever you believe in ... I just hope you find joy this year. One of my favorite verses in the Bible speaks of this ... "whether trial or tribulation ... count it all joy ..."

I will not name the verse or chapter here ... why don't you take a bit of time out of your day and try to find it yourself? It's worth the effort.

HAPPY 2009 to all of us!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sheer panic sets in. lol I have not shopped for Christmas yet! I just can't seem to get up the desire to shop ... period. (This is the truth ... no matter what Bob may claim ... I am not a heavy shopper AT ALL!) I loathe the unavoidable crowds, the commonplace rudeness and all of the chaotic confusion. The long lines don't lend themselves to a pleasurable experience either although sometimes they can be entertaining. Seems like I invariably end up in the line that when we finally move up to the guy just ahead of me ... the sirens blare, the lights start blinking and we hear the dreaded phrase screamed out, "PRICE CHECK ON LINE 5!" That's when that little mantra starts running thru my mind ... "patience is a virtue ... patience is a virtue." While I'm waiting, why not just dig out my cell phone, have a conversation with a long-lost friend and chat away the long, unending moments with a laugh or two. No ... wait ... perhaps instead I could take the opportunity of waiting and just belt out a Christmas carol ("sleigh bells ring ... are ya listening? In the lane ... snow is glistening ... a beautiful sight ... we're happy tonight ... walking in a winter wonderland" ...) and invite everyone to join in! NOT!!! Ok ... enough, already. I know I have to go out there. I need to put on my happy face and go make the best of it. Who knows, perhaps opportunity will knock while I am out there and I can share a smile and brighten someone's day in the most simple of ways.

Wish me luck! -How could I have forgotten to shop online (just after Thanksgiving) this year? It worked out so well last year!)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Not much to say today ... still trying to "get in gear". lol Hope you have a really good week!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The countdown begins ... only 14 more days until Christmas! I always need a head-start on the whole "12 Days of Christmas" plan. I am just not always organized enough (I do it to myself on purpose) to get the cookies baked in a certain order or the pies ... or the candies. Every year I tell myself I am not going to do this again (all the baking of sweets) and yet, I can't seem to help myself. There is something to be said for tradition and I know my family counts on it. (I need to teach them to bake and make this stuff so they can carry the torch.) lol It's time to pass down the recipes!

The reason I don't make it a point to be "that" organized is because I always feel that spontaneity is important when family is gathered. A tad of dis-organized chaos can be good for the soul. :) The kids are always faulting me for never sitting still when they come to visit. What they don't know is that since I don't get to see them as often as I would like (they all live in Illinois) it makes it all the more important to me to be able to serve them when they are here. When they are home they have lots of responsibilities. They all have children of their own and they work tirelessly (as so many of us do) to provide for them. I want them to relax when they come here. Relaxing takes on new meaning when they are here. Bob is my every day relaxation. He soothes my mind and takes care of me. He makes it so much easier to stretch myself that much further when needed. He is a great helper too. Well, hold on ... he can be a great helper too. He has the capability of being a great helper. I have seen him be a great helper. LOL ... I better stop! I am cracking myself up right now and there's no one here to laugh with! Daisy ... can you laugh? Maybe it's time to teach you a trick. LOL

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Wow. Where does time fly off to? Here we are almost a week later and my prep list isn't getting any shorter. I did finish the Christmas cards, (I hope) and am off to the final decorating bits in the house. It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here!

It seems like there isn't a day that goes by that we don't read in the paper or hear on the news of yet another Giant company falling. 600 laid off here 8000 there ... what will these families do to pay their bills, feed their children and keep a roof over their heads? I hope and pray we are all warm, fed and blessed with enough to make it through these coming months. I am so thankful for FAITH. Faith can see you through the roughest of times. It is such a rewarding gift.

Seems I never know year to year who will be in my home come Christmas morning. I would like to think it will be my children and grandchildren but life has a way of sending all of our loved ones off on their own currents. I know every year that my children, along with their children, will stream in and out around the holidays but in my heart of hearts I keep thinking maybe, just maybe ... one Christmas morning I will wake up and they will all be around the tree waiting to hear of Christ's birth again and tell stories, new and old all the while creating memories for all present that will last a lifetime. When I stop to think about it though I suppose it wouldn't matter what day it was ... it would be nice to gather them all together under this one roof and spend a day just basking in the love. Perhaps, I am even more blessed by having just this one here and that one there so that I can bask, instead, in the individual before me and learn even more about this unique person than I ever knew before.

After speaking to my (grown) children this week I began to ponder some things. You can only hope that the words you have for your children when they seek your advice, are words of wisdom.

Life is what we make it. Life is what we choose it to be. Perhaps not initially, when we are yet small and unknowing, but once we come of age to make our own decisions ... we direct our own path. Every choice has a consequence. Every action - a reaction. A spoken word can be far reaching and is very powerful. A mis-spoken word can be damaging and cause great catastrophe. Our example can often times speak volumes louder than words ever could. There is no need to brag of our successes in life ... to be truly successful is to be so with a humble heart. Love yourself enough to take care of yourself spiritually, mentally and physically. Love others enough to encourage them. If you are busy seeing the weaknesses in others then, my friend, you are the weak one; for it takes great strength to see past weaknesses and encourage the strengths others possess.

I suppose the words I uttered to my children this week had a glimmer of wisdom in them ... but I am only 50, after all, and I know I am still far too young to pretend to "know it all".

Happy Wednesday!

Friday, December 5, 2008

I am still here. I am still trying to get Christmas cards sent. Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Forgive me if this particular writing seems rather awkward. It is hard to type when you are rolling around like a bowl full of jelly. Can we say "STUFFED"? Seriously though, I was really good. I made dinner yesterday with all of the usual trimmings but I limited myself to one small portion of everything and then did not snack at all. HIGHLY UNUSUAL for me. Normally, I would be tearing through that turkey like I was never going to eat again. Turkey is one of my favorite foods. Especially at Thanksgiving and Christmas ... it just seems to taste so much better when it's fresh out of the oven. I am thinking about starting a serious diet and blogging very honestly about the whole experience. I have quite a bit of weight I need to shed ... if I decide to blog about it I will then reveal my current weight so that I will be obligated at that point to succeed or fail and experience terrible humiliation. lol Perhaps I will succeed after all! I want 2009 to be a new start for me. I want to face the new year with much excitement and anticipation of what the Lord has in store! But for now, it is "black friday" and I am not out shopping. Maybe decorating the Christmas Trees will prove be more exhilarating! HAVE A WONDERFUL HOLIDAY WEEKEND!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008 - a few thoughts and my Thanksgiving hope for you

As soon as I woke up this morning I thought of my son Brian. 28 years ago today I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy! For years I have told friends and family that if every birth could be that easy the world would not be big enough to hold all of the babies that would result. No drugs! No epidurals! Just a basically very EASY and wonderful birthing experience. Every 7th year Brian's birthday falls on Thanksgiving Day. Nice for him ... what with all of those relatives around to wish him well into his coming year. This year, it is as it was then ... the day before Thanksgiving. Let me just tell you ... I wish Brian and I could have gone home the following day so I could have had Thanksgiving with my family. Just thinking about this made me think about the fact that it seems like all my babies were born around significant dates (to me) ... Jasmin was born 3 days before my birthday and it just so happened that I took her home on my 20th birthday! Brian was born the day before Thanksgiving. Nick was born 3 days before his father's 26th birthday and Cory ... well Cory was born 2 days before Halloween. (I can not even begin to tell you how I prayed that he would not be born on halloween ... it was just spooky to me. LOL!!!) The really neat thing about all of this is I figure with memory being what it is (or isn't) as you get older, my kids can have a real huge laugh at my expense when some day I forget what holiday I am supposed to associate with which one's birthday. lol! (I laugh now, myself, for I will probably cry later). I hope and pray that you and yours have much to be thankful for this year. Where there is little to eat, I pray God blesses your table in an unexpected & wonderful way. Where there is much to eat, I pray you are humbled by your blessings and truly take time to share with your family the many reasons you should all feel thankful. Where there are loved ones missing, I hope the stories shared make them seem present after all. Where there is dissension, I hope you find healing. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Friday, November 21, 2008

When I woke up this morning I had thoughts of the Holidays on my mind. I have such good holiday memories. When I was a little girl we used to go to my grandmother's after church pretty often. Seemed like we were always at either my maternal grandparent's home or my paternal grandmother's home. My paternal grandfather passed away when my dad was just 9 years old. It didn't matter where we were during the holidays there were always lots of aunts, uncles and cousins. My mom came from a family with 18 children. My father's family had 9 children in it. Food was in abundance. It covered every surface in the house at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Come to think of it the time of year didn't really dictate that particular fact ... no matter what time of year there was always an abundance of food. Holidays just brought out the "special" food. Huge turkeys and hams ... lots of fruit and pumpkin pies. Homemade loaves of bread and rolls fresh out of the oven. I was a very blessed little girl. The thing that I remember the most and cherish the most is the LOVE that overflowed. I wish you and yours a very warm, loving and abundant Holiday Season!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Ms. Daisy went to "the beauties" this morning. She is feeling primped, pampered and plumb tuckered out. She is sleeping on her chair here in the office. Poor thing. It must be hard work ... maintaining beauty. I am feeling tired myself. It's definitely not from "maintaining beauty". I just jump out of bed (okay, lest Bob say something if he reads this ... I don't exactly jump ... it's more like a slow roll), I pull a comb thru my hair ... wash my face, brush my teeth and make my way out to the office. I did leave out the part about getting dressed. I keep trying to talk Bob into letting us have Pajama day here like they do in Shipshewana but he's not hearing it so far. Persistence is not paying off in this instance. Well, I have been instructed to complete a list of things I was given this morning so I best be on my way. I wish you a "pj kind of day" in your heart today!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Well, hello there. I don't know where time goes. Every day I tell myself I will go primp up the website ... I will blog ... I will ...

Then I don't. Time, I need more time. What about you? How is your day going? How about your week? Was it what you hoped it would be? Did you get all of your "to-dos" done? Are you feeling good about things today or are you bogged down with the "how am I ever going to get this done" blues? I hope you are feeling blessed! It's a beautiful gray, rainy day! It's not too cold outside! The grass is still green as are most of the little plants. The trees are happy to be going into sleep-mode. Little animals scurry here and there gathering their needs (food, shelter materials) for the onslaught of Winter. If you're lucky enough to have a fireplace and even more fortunate to have wood to burn in it perhaps tonight could be a warm, cozy, romantic night in your home. Are there any marshmallows left in the cupboards? What about cocoa? Yummy! If so, you have all the makings for a wonderful night to make magical memories. If not, then you still have all the makings for a wonderful night to make magical memories ... we all do ... we have everything we need right inside of our hearts and our minds. Give hugs today. Whisper kind words into someone's ear. Verbally give love to those you love. A simple "I love you" can bless someone's day beyond reason. Forgive anyone you harbor ill will towards. This simple act will loosen your burden. It's a beautiful day full of promise!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

It is already 4:40 PM. I just don't know where the time goes. I feel like I've been out in this office for just a minute but I've been here all day long. There are organized piles of Christmas postcards stacked neatly on my desk. I am about 1/5 of the way thru my list of recipients. I haven't even started with our personal Christmas cards for friends and family yet. If all goes well I will have everything addressed, stamped and to the post office by December 15th. It has been a lot of fun, as always, designing them but the addressing portion of the task is something I wish I could delegate elsewhere. One thing is certain ... I am so thankful for stamps that have adhesive on the back.

I can remember my mother sitting at the kitchen table with her cards all stacked, addressed and ready to be stamped. I remember her little sponge thingamajiggie that held water and she would sit there so patiently and rub each stamp over that sponge and then adhere it to the envelope. Thank God for progress! ha ha!

Do you remember when our clocks always stayed the same here? It was one of my favorite things about living here. Being Illinois born and bred I was so sick of daylight savings time. It was the biggest (excuse me) over-rated crock. Twice a year people would run around all depressed and gloomy having a truly difficult time trying to get their bodies to adjust to the drastic changes twice a year. Now, sadly, I find myself enduring it once again. I am surrounded by men & women here in Middlebury as well as my friends in Elkhart telling me how depressed they are by it getting so dark out so early in the day. Oh my (I think) we haven't even really gotten into Winter yet ... I hope they don't get too depressed! Why was this a good idea???

That's enough for today ... time to go make dinner.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Every Thursday I get up and take Ms. Daisy to "the beauties". This is what I call the Dunkin Doggies Grooming when I am speaking to Ms. Daisy. She always comes back beautifully coiffed with a bow in her hair and smelling of french perfume. Trust me when I say she knows she looks good. She prances. No really, she does. You have to see it to believe it. She's always kind of dainty acting anyway but especially so after "the beauties". Today, for a reason I can't even begin to explain, I found myself wishing I had a "spa experience" every thursday to get away to. I will have to mention this to Bob. I know he'll tell me to just "get a job" (to pay for it). This cracks me up just thinking about it. I work my self silly around here so I hope I don't need to explain why it tickles my funny bone when he says that. Anywhoo ... I decided to bring Ms. Daisy into the office with me and put her in "her" chair. She refused to stay in it (very odd of her) ... she kept climbing up onto my desk. She wanted to lay right next to my keyboard. Go figure. I suppose when she is feeling especially beautiful she, like all girls, wants to be seen. I finally put her on the chair I am on (she is laying behind me) and I am going to try to finish typing this. I can feel her glaring at my back. Creepy. lol:) What harm could a 5 pound miffed little puffball actually cause me? I just heard her sigh really loud. uh oh So ... (let's ignore her and hope for the best) ... I am already trying to get the holiday cards printed out for Christmas/New Years. I really am so lucky to be able to do that. I have so much fun creating things. I'm not great at any one thing but I sure do love doing a lot of things. :)Well, I better go for now so I can move on to the next thing. Tomorrow is Friday! YEAH!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Glancing at the weather report brought a chill to my bones. Just knowing that cold weather is at our door has me scurrying to gather coats, sweaters, scarves, etc from their store-away tubs and putting them in places they can be easily accessed for the next few months. The logs got stacked just outside the door ready for those chilly nights. (I can't wait for that ... our fireplace is so beautiful when the logs are burning bright!) The smell of hot cocoa occasionally wafts through the air. Pumpkin, Dutch Apple and Old Fashioned Apple pies have already appeared on the table. Let's not forget the oatmeal raisin cookies there too. Yummy! There's just something about a nice hot oven loaded with goodies to be shared with friends and neighbors that warms me up on the inside. Where is the eggnog? I find eggnog to be such a special treat ... I really look forward to it. As soon as it appears in the dairy section at the store I am there grabbing it up. It's so delicious with nutmeg sprinkled on top! I want you to know that I just re-read what I wrote and the dawn of realization has me committed to incorporate lots of exercise into my day lest I turn into a big round ball and roll away. Having said that ... that's it for today ... time to turn to the work at hand and dive in. Please send me a line or two ... it's lonely in here. :)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Today greeted me once again with frosty grass and a chill in the air. I am witnessing nature wind down and relax into a much needed slumber. My little plants all seem to be lazy in the cold air. Never before have I been so fascinated with the process (lives) of my plants. It is all so miraculous to me. Time and again I have been thankful when the seasons change but this year I am even more grateful that in all my busy-ness that I am allowing myself time to stop if just for a second or two to notice the transition of all things around me. So much wonder to behold. Fall colors are breathtaking. The greens to the reds to the oranges, yellows and browns. Spellbinding. In my mind's eye I can remember a covered bridge here draped in fall colors, a forest preserve there "painted" in color as if going out on the town, I ever remember downtown Chicago with all its gray mass (both streets and buildings) being dressed up in the fall colors of the little trees along the magnificent mile. Crested Butte, CO puts on a fall showing like few other places on earth. The wildflowers there dance in the breeze to nature's tune and they have no apologies. I hope others take the time to really respect and be amazed by the subtle changes going on around them. It is a sight to behold!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Happy Birthday Cory! Cory is 19! My baby boy is growing up. Okay, so I am dilusional ... Cory has always been an old soul. From the time he was just a tiny thing he has talked and laughed and questioned, reasoned and cajoled and had a cause. He is a wonderful young man with an exciting path ahead of him. I often wonder what it would be like to be the "baby" in the family. Your siblings before you leave a path of their own for you to observe. Some of the things along their paths may seem alluring, others are definatly not for you. What would it be like to learn your family dynamics in action by watching your older siblings? Wouldn't this give you a strong learning curve? lol If this is true, then Cory learned well because he has always been a joy to be around and smart as a whip! If today is your birthday too ... well then, Happy Birthday!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The weather is rather overcast today with an unmistakable chill in the air. I saw the "s"now word in the paper yesterday. I laughed because the article almost apologized for the fact that the little white stuff might appear ... not to worry (it assured us) ... it won't be "sticking around". (I don't know about you but this just cracks me up for some reason). Personally, I love snow especially when the sun hits it and it looks like millions of beautiful cystals spread all over the yard. To me, it is a special, beautiful gift from God and it is one of my favorite things.

This morning I spoke with my daughter who lives in Illinois about her swelling belly. She is due to have our newest addition in April. Hard to believe someone could be so excited about another baby. I just feel like this baby is such an extra special blessing because they have tried so long to have it. Scott has an older son from his younger days and Jasmin has two older children from hers; Jason & Jada and I don't know who's more excited ... them or me. :) It just leaves a warm snuggly feeling in your heart when you think about one more grandchild to have in your life to love!

I just read back over my blogging and decided that I have become a very opinionated person. lol Who knew? I wonder if this blogging thing is such a good idea after all. We'll give it time and see what happens. :)

Monday, October 27, 2008

Let me just start by saying "I have no idea where I went wrong". Looking back I remember waking bright and early Saturday morning and then its all a fog. (JUST KIDDING!) We were busy all weekend long! Problem is, I don't think we made much of a dent in our to-do list. There is so much groundwork yet to be done for some of the things at the top of that list. I know in any single day we can pretty much count on at least 50 unexpected distractions. That's not a bad thing. It just causes the day to shrink a bit too fast. Let me take this opportunity to introduce you to Ms. Daisy. She can be my example for "unexpected distractions". Ms. Daisy is our tiny pomeranian. She has attitude. She thinks she's some kind of Diva Princess. Why she thinks this we'll never know, we only know she acts like she thinks she is superior to all other living creatures. Ms. Daisy, for all of her fanciful fussiness is still 100% dog. As such, she loves to roll in, around, on top of anything dead. She thinks this makes her smell especially attractive and the more she can find something dead (thanks to her beloved friends, the cats) to roll in ... the happier she is. YOU WOULD NOT BELIEVE how a tiny 5 pound furball could smell so horrific! She rolled in a dead something-or-other on Saturday and she was so pungent it took my breath away (literally). She was happy as a clam. I was not. This particular unexpected distraction took up a good 35 minutes or so of my day to straighten out. A bath was followed by a quick blow dry and then she was off to new mischief. I'm sure if you have or have ever had either pets/children or both you TOTALLY UNDERSTAND. Well, let's go long-story-short and just say the rest of the weekend passed as eventfully as the beginning and here we are (once again SURVIVORS!) tired-as-all-get and ready to plunge into a new work week. :) Life is such a wondrous thing. No matter how well you plan, no matter your wonderful intentions, life can still sneak up on you, throw you a curve ball and send you off in a new direction within seconds. What's not to love?! I wouldn't want to live it any other way! In case you're wondering ... when I started this out by saying I have no idea where I went wrong ... I was referring to the fact that I never did manage to get even half the things done that I planned for this weekend, but you know what? In the end, it didn't matter because Bob and I enjoyed another work-filled weekend together creating new memories and I cherish it all the same. Life is precious and priceless.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Well, TGIF everyone! It's finally here. I woke to raindrops falling against the windows this morning and jumped up to go look outside. Now, normally I would want to just stay in bed and snuggle up to one of my (by then) toasty warm pillows but this morning I was off and running. I love the rain! I especially love the rain when it isn't accompanied by lightning. Rain by itself feels so good on the skin. Dancing in the rain is one of my very most favorite things to do ever! (Don't knock it 'til you try it) There is a ever so slight chill in the air which brings me to the realization that Fall is in full swing and Ol' man Winter is just around the corner. Bob tells me it's supposed to rain all weekend. I suppose that means I'll get most of my indoor "to-dos" done and my outdoor "to-dos" will have to be completed as the weather allows.

I am such a four-seasons girl. Always have been ... there is something so evocative & exhilarating about change. It brings out the very best in me.

Oh ... lest I forget ... THANK YOU LADIES! I am finally getting submissions from you and will be posting them over the weekend ... look for the new additions on Monday! Perhaps the TEA ROOM will be a success after all. :)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The weekend is just around the corner and my list of "to-do's" is so long I can't believe it! I need a secretary! lol Let me try to get that approved by the boss ... not a chance! It's nice to daydream though. I had a housekeeper once upon a time and that was really nice. I really miss her too. It's time for FALL cleaning (SPRING cleaning's cousin) ... such a fun time of year at our house. Decorations come out and everything starts seeming so warm and cozy. The fireplace is cleaned and wood is stocked and at the ready for those evening fires. Mmm, toasty inside and chilly out. Pumpkin pies bake in the oven. Cookie recipes come out so all the women in the family can decide which ones will make it to the tables of friends and family this Holiday season. Hot cocoa abounds in big fat mugs and life is wonderful and we are thankful. Just the thoughts that run thru my mind of all the upcoming preparation brings a smile to my face. I can hardly wait for tomorrow!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Do you ever have those days that you get up and you feel refreshed a little more than you did the morning before but by the time 1PM hits you are wiped out? There are things that need to be done in the various gardens around the yard and I am just too tired today to even think about it. Outdoor work doesn't even start here until 5PM (after business hours). I think tonight I will just relax with one of the many magazines that keep piling up and just call it a day. I hope Bob feels like cooking.

Monday, October 20, 2008

At first, I wasn't going to create a blog. I always thought blogs were rather creepy. lol Who really wants to read what amounts to someone else's "diary"? Then I remembered Anne Frank and felt rather chastised. I suppose there are many of us who read books for that very reason. To escape from our own reality and peek into someone else's. Therefore, I am going to blog every now and then just to see if anyone responds. It will be interesting to see if anyone actually reads this stuff. lol


Please click on the page you would like to visit next

Your Comments / The Guest Book / Tea Garden Pictures

Join Our Email List