Creativity, Dogs, family, Gardening, Holiday, Life, Nature, Photography, the World, Thinking, Writing

Tinkering (or a Bit of Everything)

The sun is out again this morning. Yay! But I’m not sure if leaving the mums out was good or bad. I found mites on the one plant and put them both out yesterday morning. Vinegar and water did not work as they came back on two of my plants. The one plant I’m sure isn’t going to make it no matter what I do. But I’ve had it for a few years so I guess… It seems prone to the mites whenever I have to bring it in for the winter and I have no way to prevent it. I don’t want to go with the stuff they sell at the stores because it could hurt the dogs.

I spent the chunk of yesterday talking with Dad. A good thing but the problem is that I got nothing done that I was supposed to. And since I’ve not slept well the past few nights I was falling asleep not long after dark. So I went to bed much earlier than I intended. This morning I need to crank out the second article I was supposed to submit yesterday. I got my research done before Dad called but nothing more. I just hope it turns out ok.

I took photos at odd moments yesterday but I’ve not looked to see if they turned out. Most of them were the kids while I was talking to Dad. I will share what I have. I got a nice one this morning of the sun coming up. Not quite sure what just happened but the sun suddenly flooded the room. There are no clouds out so I don’t know why it was so sudden.

I need to expand my vocabulary. I find myself using the same words and phrases, some times in the same paragraph. I need more variety. I might get myself one of those desk calendars that you learn a new word each day. I’ll wait until after the holidays though.

I have been blocking these random text messages from strangers the past two days. I’m pretty sure that the video sent this morning was not something I needed to see if you follow me. I had another one yesterday. I blocked both numbers but I want to know how my number got in their hands to begin with. I’ve not had any problems until now with stuff like that. Mom has been getting texts like that two over the past month.

I guess I should stop here and add the photos so I have enough time to write the article and get it out to the editor. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Creativity, Dogs, Emotions, family, Gardening, Life, Nature, Thinking, Writing

The Wonder of It All

We have internet and power but I’m not sure about the rest of our little town. All day we were hit by hard, cold winds and heavy (at times) snow. We only got a few inches but the combination of the two caused city wide power outages yesterday. My store was the only one open in Rapid City. All the others had lost power. Our power went off and on a few times wreaking havoc with the computers but we pulled through.

This morning has dawned cold and dark. I am upset because when I let the kids out this morning I saw that the winds had pulled the tarp mostly off of the memorial garden. I’m going to try to cover it back up but I fear the damage has already been done.

I am still dragging my feet about replacing the Jeep. It has to be done. The cold isn’t doing it any better and I really don’t know how much longer the Jeep will last. Today just feels overwhelming. I’m trying to make some life changes personally and then It feels as though everything else needs to be tended to instead of being able to focus on what I need to do. So I suppose it is back to my lists. I will sit down and write everything that I need to do and then figure out what comes first etc. The dark skies aren’t helping.

Dad messaged me last night at work with a deep depression. I had to explain to him that I was at work and couldn’t talk. Everything he tried to do felt like a major disaster to him because he couldn’t understand what was wrong (his text messages to me say “sent by Echo” and he has no idea what it is or how to just send a regular text). Trying to help between customers was near impossible.

Today is the second day of NaNoWriMo and I have not written a single word. After I finished with this anxiety kicked in and I spent the remaining time before work on the couch with the dogs. I woke up a few times in the night and spent the time trying to fall asleep thinking about the novel and ideas for the story. Hopefully today I can atleast get my first days numbers in. If I can do more great but I want atleast day one.

I need to change all the calendars today as well. The one that takes the most time is my Winnie the Pooh perpetual calendar. I have to replace the honey pot shaped dish (each month has a different scene related to that month) as well as replace all the little wooden bits that have the days listed on them. I also have special wooden bits for holidays and birthdays that I can put in as well.

I suppose I should stop here. I am procrastinating the rest of my day. Ahhhh… but Mother Nature does care! The sun has just come out and is streaming into my office. Yay! Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Cooking/Baking, Emotions, family, Food, Friends, Gardening, Learning, Life, Nature

Sorting Through

What a mess yesterday’s blog turned out to be! It said I posted it in the morning on the laptop without photos. But on my phone app it said that nothing had posted… despite 8 views. So when I got home I monkeyed with it some more on the phone app and apparently it officially posted last night. Sigh… Oh and I have to delete a lot more photos than I want to share. For example, I deleted about 12 photos but it only let me add two to the post last night.

I am dropping my Jeep off some time today. It was supposed to be earlier this morning but I slept until 9am (don’t be too impressed, I was in and out of the bathroom til late and then I was wide awake from 6:30am til 7:30am). Hang on… that was my mechanic. I don’t have to drop the Jeep of til around 2pm. Yay! I had hoped to take back a batch of bottles before I dropped off the Jeep.

The sky looked so hopeful when we got up. Clouds but a lot of blue sky poking through. Then our great blazing maple trees just outside the door. It’s like having a clump of sunbeams just hanging out. Sometimes the yellow is almost too bright to look at. But right now it has darkened enough that I had to turn on the office light.

I am happy to say that I really don’t have anything that I have to do today. I cleaned so well for company (and we have been able to keep it up) last week that there is nothing to do around the house. I might double check the plants for watering. I watered everyone the other day but it has been so cold and the furnace has been on so much that the house is really dry. Some of the plants are ok with that but others need to be watered more than once a week. I also need to get more information on my orchid. I can’t tell when or if she needs more water (she gets ice cubes verses liquid water).

One of my coworkers in the deli is learning to cook. We are both excited about it. I have been giving him little hacks and I am bringing him my ever popular bread recipe from my Winnie the Pooh cookbook. He’s very smart and enjoys cooking so it is fun to share stuff like that. We had a lot of fun last night with all of us. I seem to be fitting in really well.

Despite how cold it is out the air smells really good. Like when you got outside on a Spring day and the sun is out and you can smell the earth, flowers just Nature. It made me feel good. I think I will wrap this up and try to take back some bottles (we get 10 cents for every bottle we return so that is a HUGE help for groceries and such). Thank you for reaching out and commenting! As always thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, Creativity, Dogs, family, Friends, Gardening, Holiday, Learning, Life, Nature, Photography

Finding Room to Breathe

This morning has been a reversal of routines. Before even turning on the computer I have taken care of the dogs, watered the plants and picked up a little bit. Once the computer was on I checked my classes to see if I had a grade for the final course yet. (Nothing yet.) The kids have been in and out since around 6am. The girls have upset tummies. I have been in the same boat off and on since 5am. I’m not feeling the greatest but I don’t have the heart to cancel. I talked to our friend last night and both he and his girlfriend have been really looking forward to this movie night. So I will hope to feel better by tonight. That is the other bit. They won’t get here until around 6pm. They work nights so they usually get home around the time everyone is getting up. I have to work tomorrow at 11am so I’m not sure how late I will be up tonight.

It is another dark morning with rain and snow mixed. That started about the time I was getting up because I didn’t feel good. Some of the snow remains but most of it has been melted by all the rain. I had a mostly empty gallon bucket on the porch. In one day it has gotten to overflowing with all the rain we’ve had.

Speaking of buckets I got both the mum plants transplanted the other day. They are both very happy right now. I also cut off the bottom half of the root ball. Poor plants had very little dirt beneath them. To show their happiness both plants are blooming like crazy. ❤️ The tomato plant seems to be doing better since I removed the basil plant from the planter. There is more room for both the tomato plant and the pepper plants.

I can’t believe that my violet plant is still blooming! It has been in constant bloom since I brought it home a few years (?!) ago. I have been diligent about dead heading when needed (I also did that when I repotted the mums) as well as making sure it stays watered. All of my plants are doing tremendously well. I can’t wait to get the one shelving unit out of the kitchen and into the garage so I can spread out the plants (I am thinking another shelving unit that fits in the corner possibly). Then we can use the kitchen table again. I also want to move Calypso (our ball python) into that area of the kitchen. It will be much warmer for her there. Right now she is close to the sliding glass door and gets all the cold air when it is opened.

My Jeep will be picked up either today or tomorrow. I am anxious. I want the Jeep fixed but I want my car to drive. I love my Jeep. It will be so nice to just drive and not have to worry about if I will make it.

I suppose I should wrap this up and finish up the last minute cleaning. There isn’t much. Just the living room tables and the stove top. I will probably sweep the kitchen one more time. Ooop and dishes need to be caught up. But not a lot so I think it will be fairly easy. I will try to take some pics from tonight’s event for tomorrow’s post. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Creativity, dreams, Emotions, Gardening, Life, Nature, Photography, retail, Thinking

A Day in the Life

I feel like I have too much going on right now. A good part of it is that I am so tired. Not much sleep the night before and work was summertime busy for me at the gas /courtesy counter. We had a .30 off gas text go out and everyone was gassing up their vehicles. This was new for me so I had to learn how to do the discount etc. (which really wasn’t too hard). I was pretty much non stop for most of my day. (I did receive a few gifts. One customer brought me some hot sauce and another gave me $5 for giving him a winning ticket (he got $110). So that was a nice way to start my day.)

Yesterday’s plan was to get groceries after work (which I did) and then do a little around the house (which I did not). I got home and unloaded groceries and played with the kids and then hit my wall. I had a headache from the mask I had been wearing all day so that did not help. I did manage to get the few pieces washed in the dirty dishes and watered my plants. Both of these were just before bed.

This morning it is cold, wet and gloomy. I just want to stay home, get everything accomplished that I need to then hibernate until Spring. I think this will be an easier winter for me mentally but physically and emotionally I just wanna jump to Spring. Too cold too fast. I don’t do well with no sunshine and it has all but disappeared the past few weeks.

I’ve not taken any recent photos so the plan is to finish this then sneak out to the yard and take a few to add to the post. It is gonna suck to have to get out in the snow to take pictures. Blah…. might actually have to purchase winter boots. Bah humbug. But I can’t stop taking photographs. I am thinking about pulling stuff together to show the seasons here. Again I need to sit down on my laptop and learn the photography programs I have installed, download all the photos and put things together. Another project for another day.

I have taken a few photos to show how dark it is getting here. The leaves are falling off the trees already. It is going to be a bitter cold this winter. Be that as it may I hope you like the pictures. I still have some flowers open and doing their thing. The yellow is one of my Chinese bushes and the white are my garlic chives. The chives are actually still blooming!

Before I keep going on and on I am going to download the photos and upload the post. Thanks for reading and your awesome comments! Stay safe!

Creativity, Friends, Gardening, Holiday, Learning, Life, Nature, Riding, Thinking, Writing

New Faces and New Plans

I am happy to say that I was able to read a lot of new bloggers this morning. New to me atleast. My feed finally showed me a bunch of the new blogs I was following. Good stuff! It was nice to read some work by new faces.

This morning we woke up to a heavy frost. Looking out over the yard to almost looked like snow. Sigh. I am really not looking forward to winter. It is already getting bitterly cold out. I am getting frustrated because the Jeep is getting worse but I still have no word as to when I can drop it off. It is a good thing I have heated gear the rate things are going. I’ll be riding in cold cold temperatures.

The Halloween Horrorthon is still on for Saturday. I need to clean up some in the house Thursday (my next day off) and we still need to figure out a menu and what movies we are watching.

My big luscious tomato plant is dying. I need to get more dirt and a bigger pot I think. So that means that after work at one point (or maybe Thursday) I need to drive to the store and get a big bag of dirt and some big pots. I only hope that the stress of the transplant doesn’t kill any of the plants I am repotting. I always hate repotting when it is cold out. I might ask for some tips from my plant group. Maybe some of them have a good technique that I can use. Oh I stand corrected. It might be my basil plant that is dying. I started really looking as I was typing (I’m in the living room this morning) and I think it might be the basil plant that is dying. If the plant base is going brown and hard like a twig I might as well pull it out. Once the plant starts to do that the leaves will taste bitter if you use them. But it looks as if a lot of the leaves are gone so it might be best to pull it out. I didn’t realize how big everything would get. I only have three plants in the long box but they grew so big!

I don’t want to go to work today. There is too much around the house that needs to get done. And not just because we have company coming over. That being said I also need to finish my last piece for class. I have about half of it done. I have gotten all my grades for all the other courses so once this is in and graded then I will have completed the whole thing. Just in time for NaNoWriMo to start. I am hoping I can put the Capstone off and not have to do it right away. It would be a bit of a pain to have to work on two full pieces of writing at the same time. If I can put it off until December then once NaNoWriMo is done I can start that. But we’ll see. I need to get gone and see about doing some more on my story for class. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, Dogs, Gardening, Life, Nature, Racing, the World, Thinking

Trudging Along

I have been in my office long enough this morning that Moose has come in and is laying on the floor. Essie hasn’t felt good and has been in and out quite a bit. Stella has been snuggled up on the loveseat. I asked them to find someone else to cover my meeting this morning. Since I am still not feeling all that great I didn’t want to attend the meeting in person. The bathrooms are not close enough. Last night’s meeting was interesting though. OPA (Offshore Powerboat Association) is trying to get Elk Rapids to be a venue for what they are going to call the Triple Crown of Michigan. It would be the third stop for them in the Michigan tour. It sounds rather exciting. I was intrigued until the speaker compared it to nascar (all lowercase on purpose) and said it was the best of the best in the world. That left a very sour taste in my mouth. My intense dislike for nascar aside they are NOT the best of the best in the world. There are other racing venues that have much better drivers than that. I see I am inching toward my soap box so I will step back. Anyway it will be interesting to see how things turn out. They will have to move fast if they are going to keep with the projected race date of the end of August.

I left the memorial garden uncovered last night. It was misting when I got home from work yesterday. I was concerned that it would not rain and the plants really needed water. So I watered them. And lo! Bring in the storm! Over the course of the evening it poured rain and we even had thunder and lightening (much to poor Stella’s chagrin). It was still raining when we went to bed so I left the garden uncovered. Everyone looks ok this morning. I think I will keep it covered all winter and see what I find in the Spring. I can bundle the tarp so that they will miss the brunt of the Winter. I may sneak out to see if there is still veggies growing once in awhile. We’ll see.

I think I will wrap this up for today. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Animals, Dogs, family, Gardening, Life, Nature, Photography, Thinking, Writing

A Little Surprise

Not feeling so hot this morning but off to work I go. I’ve been awake since 3am. All three pups are under blankets sleeping. Stella is on her back asleep. Goofball. We all had a busy day yesterday. If I wasn’t talking with one of my parents I was outside doing things. Chris made a very good chili for us as well.

In my wanderings outside taking photographs I found a grape tree. Yes, you heard me correctly. A grape vine had grown up a tree and along the branches. The grapes are high up (the deer probably ate the lower hanging bunches) so I got a ladder and got as much as I could from the branches I could reach. The grapes are plump and sweet. They have big seeds in them as well so I am trying to save them and then in the Spring I will try planting them along the fence line and see what happens.

It is supposed to rain today (I typed tonight because it is still dark out…). I hope it does. I need to water the memorial garden. I had intended to do it yesterday but by the time I remembered I had covered the garden up for the night. So if it has not rained by the time I get home from work I will break out the hose. I am tempted to try to uncover the garden before I go as well. The temperature is supposed to be quite nice today. We’ll see how much time I have once I finish this.

I have a meeting tonight that will be a Zoom meeting but the one tomorrow morning will be in person. Since I am not feeling that great I am thinking I might ask the paper if someone else can cover it for me. I don’t understand why they don’t Zoom it. I take that back, I do. Everyone is there at work anyway and since it is a morning meeting they might as well do it in person. They just have to walk down the hall. So it does make sense.

Moose is completely buried in his blanket. You would never know that he is there until he hears something and picks his head up. Even then you just see a nose and the gleam of two very tired eyes. I feel ya bub. I need to wrap this up so I can get ready for work. Thanks for reading and stay safe!

Aging, Animals, Dogs, Emotions, family, Gardening, Life, Nature, Photography, Thinking

A Fall Day

I am embarrassed to say that I wasted my first cup of coffee this morning. Maybe I should say that I sacrificed it to the house spirits…. I fed the dogs then was trying to get organized to get on here and started the Keurig. Moose came out of the kitchen to get me when I heard the sound of liquid splashing. I had forgotten to put a mug beneath the spout. I hit the stop but the damage had already been done. When I started it up again it merely sputtered a few drops into the newly placed mug.

It is chilly enough that all three dogs are snoozing covered by their blankets. No snoring though and that is unusual for them. I am hoping that we can spend time outside today. The sun is out but the wind has picked up again. I would like to keep the memorial garden uncovered overnight but we’ll see. I covered it last night even though it was only supposed to get down to around 49F (9C). Good thing I did because it got down to 39F (3C).

I am thinking I might take Moose and Stella and go for a drive to get some photos of the colors around here. I thought about leaving early for work one day (I seem to be closing most of next week) and bring my camera but I don’t want to leave my camera in the car nor do I want to bring it in the store. And I don’t think my phone camera would do the colors justice. I may use my phone anyway. It’s better than nothing. The trees look like they are big flames with the colors in the leaves. The big hill I pass on the way to work is starting to noticeably change as well.

I think this is going to be a hard winter for a lot of us physically. I notice that on the cold days Essie seems to be hurting and I know that Chris and I do. Mom and Dad both have bad arthritis in various parts of their bodies and they are experiencing more pain as the seasons progress. I wonder if this will be the year I get the kids winter boots. I think I can swing it with bills. I just hate ordering via the mail because I would like them to try them on first. I am also curious as to how the kids will react to having them on. Lol.

I see that I have gone on a bit this morning. Thanks for reading and stay safe! And thanks for all the wonderful comments!

Animals, Dogs, Emotions, family, Gardening, Learning, Life, Nature, Photography, the World, Thinking, Writing


Reading through the news this morning has me feeling that I live in a state (being Michigan) of chaos. Plots to kidnap the governor and people lining the bottom of Trump lawn signs with razor blades were the most prominent. And now I hear gunshots out back… Is this election over yet? That being said no matter who wins is will be even worse for the first few months following the election because neither side will go peacefully.

The weather is supposed to get into summer temperatures today but this morning is still chilly with a LOT of wind. The day feels very weird too. The atmosphere is off. So it will be exciting to see what the day will bring. The kids and I got up at 6:45am so that I could make a phone call to work. I forgot to tell them about next week’s meetings. Now I need to make sure I remember to attend them. Monday night is a Zoom meeting but Tuesday morning is in person. Not keen on that but gotta go since I missed last month’s.

I got just about everything done on my to do list yesterday. The only things I missed were making puppy treats (I know, bad Mom) and working on my novels (bad writer). Housework got done, I talked to Dad, cleaned the mouse cage, tended to the gardens, played with the kids, got my hair cut… I really wish I had today off. I just want to relax.

My goal this morning is to water the houseplants and uncover the memorial garden. Hopefully the wind won’t blow the tarp all over once I have it put up. I want to watch atleast one class video (I got my story finished and submitted yesterday too) as well. I can’t believe how tired I feel this morning. The kids and I actually went back to bed after I called work this morning which is why this is so late in being posted.

I took a few photos yesterday that I will share. I hope everyone has a great day. Thanks for reading and stay safe!