Friday, December 26, 2014

Family Hearts

Family is a precious thing.  Sometimes during "real life stuff" I can forget that and I imagine if you are truthful, so can you.  Our day to day and other's day to day stuff can get in the way, however, I want to share with you a sweet story about friends and family and just some little things that make them so sweet to me.

It starts with my vintage stain glass  window hanging.  I purchased it for $45.00 at a local auction and was very excited.  Sometimes the excite wears on you when you find that it is, yes old, but with problems also.  It had some weak sides and also a few small cracks in some of the outer panels.  It also had a bend in the bottom, which I found would make for trouble.   But, this determined country woman was going to find this piece a way to hang in my master bedroom window, right where I pictured it the day I purchased it.

The local and very capable framing place had done work for me for years, framing my paintings and paintings and drawings others had given me.  Therefore, this was my first and best shot at getting my stained glass piece ready to "rock and roll" in my window.  However, Dorothy took a good look at it, and also saw it's beauty, but she saw more of it's troubles, and with a breathe in, said to me, what I never expected to hear...."I cannot work on this piece".  She pointed out it was fragile and with the bend, she could see breaking it when she would try to put a frame around it.  Then we both had a wonderful idea....take it to our local stain glass artist and friend to us both, Bonnie.  I just took it home for a bit to rethink.

A few weeks later I took the piece and carefully placed it into the trunk of my car and off to Bonnie's I went, with my husband also in tow.  Bonnie was outside on this cold day, bringing pecan seedling trees into her basement from her greenhouse which she was not going to heat over the winter.  After she finished with her 100 trees with the help of her granddaughter, she took a good look at my wonderful stain glass.  As Bonnie is a very exceptional and a bit eccentric person, and very talented, she saw the hope for the piece.  I told her my thought of just making a base for it and leaning it on the wall with a light behind.  Bonnie said, "No way, this piece needs to be in a window to be happy.  You want your stain glass happy so it can make you happy also.  That is what it is all about and why I make it."  She told me that I was the rescuer of this wonderful piece and now I needed to make sure to place it where it would bring joy and happiness to others and itself to be fully appreciated.  

In having my daughter and daughter in love and granddaughter over one evening to play games, I told them this sweet story of my "to be happy" stained glass.  I enjoyed sharing it and then went on with life.

Later I decided to take the piece to Hobby Lobby and the wonderful young lady there also admired this stain glass and said she would try to frame it and we talked and measured and planned and picked out a frame pattern and also hangers.  Weeks later she called me with pick up and said it did not break and she was happy with it.  When I picked it up, I told her the "happy" story also and she smiled and agreed and said that she was glad to be a small part of it all.

My husband and I carefully worked on putting chains on the hangers and hooks in the window frame so we could hang the piece.  I must report that it looks beautiful, and "happy" in the bedroom window and also is bringing me joy.  

And then on Christmas night as family gathered to share a meal and fellowship and gifts, I opened a small bag from my youngest granddaughter, Alorah, and she had purchased for me a small free standing stained glass floral piece with tea candles to place behind it.  She simply stated, you can set it on your writing desk in the bedroom under your "happy piece" and it can, in some small way, make you and the other piece happy.  This twelve year old did not just give me a gift of the present, but a gift of enjoying my life "happenings" and stories that I share with her.  I am blessed to have such interesting and interested family and friends.  

My vintage stain glass piece has found a good home and I do report that as of this day it is happy that I rescued it.  

Friday, December 19, 2014


Tea time in many parts of the world is very much a ritual and also special time to visit.  It also is very relaxing for a "tea time for one" in this part of the world....rural northeast Missouri.  I am trying to use my tea pot collection this winter and also switching off on my many tea cups.  Some are from family and friends, and many are from auctions, but because I have bid and purchased them, they are special memories of my "adoption" .

Each time I sit down with steeping tea and my empty tea cup awaiting a new adventure, I cannot help but wonder about the many places and stories these dear pots and cups could tell.  Some may be wonderful, and more may be a challenge.  I do know at my home, as their adopted parent, they are cared for and resting plentifully  until they are picked to share some tea with me.  

The big treat the past few days as been that I am using Downton Abbey Tea which I purchased while in town a few days ago.  I am an avid Downton Abbey fan, even working on a hexagon English Paper Piecing quilt with Downton Abbey fabric.  There are a number of flavors and only for a season, and they say, when gone, they are gone.  Hoping they will come out with more.  I purchased a breakfast tea, hearty and strong to start the day, and on the can is stories of getting ready for a foxhunt.  Now I thought very appropriate for me as my dear friend Daisy Mae is a foxhound.   The other tea purchased is a Christmas Spice, very light and tasty.  I have to admit that this tea time of one becomes two if I leave my cup for a few minutes low enough  for Daisy Mae Foxhound.  She seems to like the sweetness and spices.  I am glad I usually only pour a half cup at a time so it stays warm.  And it really is okay to share with her, as she is my "bestest" friend ever.

There is also humor in some of my tea times with these vintage items I use.  Just this morning, sitting here at the computer, tea cup on one side of the desk and tea pot (from England)  on the other side when I see liquid on the top of the desk....running from this pot.  Apparently it has a leak.  As I did not want to get off the computer and did want to enjoy my tea time, I switched the tea cup saucer to place it under the tea pot.  As I checked it, I just poured my tea from the pot and also some from the saucer.  To note, this specific pot will have to sit out TEA TIME FOR ONE, or two or three.  But for today, she is a pretty pot and I will enjoy.


Saturday, December 6, 2014

Being a Country Girl

Sixty Six years ago, I was born to parents who lived a country life.  We lived in rural central Wisconsin.  My mother worked hard as a stay at home mother while my dad worked hard as a factory worker and then a truck driver.  The both worked hard all the time at home also.  Our play, my brother and I, was helping them work when they were working, and working some when they were not, doing our chores, and then much fun and simple play.

Playtime, well, consisted of biking, but mostly playing with our animals, walks in the woods and fun playing in the creeks and pond.  We did some fishing.  Our wintertime fun was snowshoeing, ice skating, and making snow forts.  Sometimes our mother would come out and help us make an iglo, yes, with a top and door.  We also made snow horses and would ride and ride for hours, out west, on the plains, in the woods, wherever our minds would take us on our pretend travels. Always indoor play was sewing, drawing, playing with clay, and jacks and games.  

Country life was work, family and simple pleasures, which still remain to be good pleasures.  I learned to knit when I was 12, and now at 66, am still an avid knitter, having even taught 4 H classes and adult classes in my home.  Currently I belong to a knitting group that meets once a week, just knitting, exchanging conversation, caring about each other's lives and checking out their projects and them checking out my each other lots of ideas.  We share our fondness of knitting, but just as quilting bees did years ago, we also share our stories and laughter and concerns, and even some tears.

Other things I learned as a country girl growing up, was that I knew in my heart of hearts that I wanted to live in the country.  Sometimes I had to live in the city, but still keep my country spirit, with plants, walks, going to parks and trips to the country.  I would decorate country and think "country life".  It really does sustain a person if they have to live in the city.  

I have lived in the mountains, on the plains, in the woods, just on the edge of small towns, and people saying..."You know Katie, she lives in the last house before you leave town, the one with the large garden, many flowers and all the trees".  That was me, and people would like to come visit and I would share garden produce, a boutique of flowers or some seeds.  We would also tell stories and visit about the weather, politics, school stuff or church gatherings.

It seems through my years, I have, of course, gotten older, but things are not so much different.  I have trees, flowers, large garden, a pond, and a creek, and farm crops, and animals.  I have taught my children and grandchildren to enjoy it all.  We have walked together and I currently walk with my Daisy Mae Foxhound, enjoying the outdoors and the country life.  If you live in the city, or if you don't, and are a country girl, come visit and walk with me in my rural Missouri.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


The year of 2014 is coming to a close and it seems unbelievable to  me.  So many things and so much time, but it passes faster then I can believe, especially each year I get older.  Now at 66, and enjoying life, retirement, and rural living, and glamping, of course with my Daisy Mae, I still get amazed when I don't seem to get everything accomplished I want to.  So, this is a time of year to make a list and check it twice.

My lists are full throughout the year, but at the end of the year, the last month of the year, I cannot help but think what I did accomplish.  Think about it for your life, and when you do, you may decide to sit down for a coffee or tea break because it may amaze you.

I would list right on the top that I was able to go glamping a total of twelve times this  camping season in rural Missouri, with each time staying three to four days.  That total of days is amazing, and I have the pictures, journal entries, and memories to prove it.

Another thing on my list is gardens, two good sized gardens, flowerbeds, and a personal orchard, all productive.  I did not plant a fall garden this year but encourage you to try it sometime as it is interesting and productive way to  extend the growing season.  I do, however, have one nice large tomato plant in a pot in my study and it is green, pretty and is blooming....tomatoes indoors in the winter will be a treat.

My quilting projects and knitting projects have gone well.  I was able again to share hats with the local hospital for newborns.  I also sent hats, scarfs and mittens off to a Native American group I have sponsored in Utah for many years now.  We glampers and rural girls have many talents and online you can find lots of charities that can use your talents or produce from those talents.

My usually array of books have gone past my eyes and many were passed on to friends and family.  Reading opens my mind and takes me to visit other people's lives, encouraging me in mine.  I am so thankful to Mrs. Kopreck, in Wisconsin, who, in a one room school house (yes) taught me to read.  

Family, friends, church family, and neighborhood and community always play a role in my life.  Each year I am pleased to recall the many great family and friends I have.  Today I got a nice message from a long time friend of 24 years, and one who I have known for 41 years.  Facebook has given me new and interesting friends, some new and some long time friends.  I find it healthy to have different ages, generations, genders, etc. of people in my list of friends.  People can make life so full and interesting.  Maybe I will even get some of them out to glamp next year.  Well, maybe just for a hotdog roast would seem more realistic, but, hey, 2015 is coming and a new year may bring some surprises with thing for sure.....this rural woman is going to "glamp on".

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Gathering Winter Activities

Winter seems to be upon us in rural Missouri.  I like the seasons as I have said before, but it seems that fall went so fast.  I was ready for bonfires, and nice walks in the leaves, and hiking with family, but it got cold, cold fast.  However, this lady always has lots of ideas for all seasons.

My newest thing is joining the YMCA.  Yes, I do not like running to town often, and especially at night, but I decided I needed to get out and meet a few new people, but mostly I needed to stay active.  These old bones get sore otherwise and sluggish.  So after some twenty years of not belonging to the YMCA, I made a big decision to start up again.  I go two times a week for now....Tuesday and Thursday.  I am back to doing Yoga.  I did it at home, but with a group, class, has always been more challenging and fun for me.  After that hour I rest a bit and then head to the pool.  I swim, as I so enjoy my pool in the summer months, I now can continue to get that all over body workout.  Then I do water exercise class.  I have met some nice women in that class already.  I hit the hot tub for about 15 minutes before leaving.  

On Tuesday, I do all the above and then take myself to lunch, and then Bible Study group with some wonderful church friends.  After that I do some errands, and maybe get another bite to eat before heading to a great knitting group at a church and library friend's home.  The group of women there is so great also.  We knit and laugh and talk.  It is something like some of the books I have read about knitting groups or book discussion groups of women, getting close to know each other through the years.   It makes me think of the old movie "Steel Magnolias".  Women do like to talk and cry and laugh and know each other's business and try to help each other out.  It is wonderful to let new people into my life, and also keep those I have known for years.  My oldest dear friend is Helga, and we have been friends for over 40 years.  Friends of other women helps me grow and be all I can be.

So part of my gathering of winter activities are still my home things, especially walking my sweet Daisy Mae Foxhound.  She is now two years, eight months and 3 days old.  Yes, I am smitten with her.  She is always so happy when I get home and we talk and walk and take naps together.  She sits with me in the oversized recliner when I do hand quilting or knitting.  She is a warmth in body heat and also heart.  I also have my bread baking, cooking and other baking, home decorating and entertaining, but mostly the wonderful simple life of country......relaxing, watching the sun set,  visiting with neighbors that drop in, family.  But I do think this new activity for winter will be good for me.  I know I will learn something from it, and we are always always always to keep learning and growing.......and maybe it won't be in body size with all the exercise!

Friday, October 31, 2014

End of October.....Wow

Maybe it is not the same for you, but to me this year went so fast, and the "glamping" season went even faster.  It was, however, all enjoyable, rain or shine, and I am already looking and planning for next season.

Today I printed off the last of my camping pictures and have completed my second year "glamping" photo album.  I do plan to have many more years and many more albums to live and create and enjoy along the way.

During these next months, well, "Glamping" will be part of my life, but just at home.  I  can have firepit fires and do smores, and I can take my Daisy Mae Foxhound on long walks at the farm.  The difference is then coming home to a house instead of a camper.  It is all good stuff.  I will also plan and create some items for use next year for glamping, such as more embroidered kitchen towels, maybe a new tea pot from an auction, and even getting a quilt or two done for the camper.

In progress now are three different quilts, but I do know they will be for at home.  Well, maybe the crazy quilt can go to the camper sometimes.  Crazy quilts are fun to do and fun to use, having such interesting history.  I am making the current one from all fabric obtained at second hand stores.....lots of velvet, silk ties, and skirts, with some rayon pieces also and lots and lots of embroider.  

Tonight, the last night of October, yes Halloween, means cooler weather and more time to do these crafts and think about the next season while still enjoying memories of the past season of glamping.  I am not busy with trick or treaters.....well, because I live out in the country, way out where no one comes to get candy.  But I do wish everyone a happy fall season.  Enjoy November tomorrow and all month.  Enjoy family and traditions and friends and cooking and baking and decorating.  Enjoy yourself, always taking time for some rest.   

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Wandering and "Wondering" Thoughts

Not sure if it comes with fall, endings to many things, or because we are through with Roy's cancer treatments, or many other "or's and "if's".  This country lady is still enjoying life but seems to be at a stage of rethinking, plotting and planning anew, and redirecting her time, talents and days.  I am thinking this is all okay and a part of life, at least it is for my life right now.  I have been reading books on decisions, directions, and taking note of things I should or want to change in my own life.

My country life and life with my Daisy Mae, foxhound, really is good.  I have enjoyed many outings of "glamping" this season.  I actually went about 12 times and three to four days each time so adding this up, I have been gone camping 36 or more days this season.  I don't go far, but I do have fun, and quiet and rest.  I miss it already since winterizing the camping.  Last night we had to make a fire in our backyard firepit and have  marshmallows.  I am thinking I can do it again tonight.  Chicken soup and homemade deli-style rye bread of dinner, and smores can be our dessert.  Really they can!

Also Roy has gotten good reports from all of his cancer treatments and this is great.  Not all the schedules and running and running and resting and taking him on field trips (drives just to get out of the house on days he was feeling better).  Now he can get on with his stuff and plan and do some things by himself.  Yeah.

Books I am reading are helping me as I admit, I change things around sometimes and just get too too busy.  After no more running for Roy, I decided to join two new groups at church.  Good stuff, but really, I don't like the running and was yelling "yeah" when I could be home more.  New friends from my auction groupie people that we are starting to see at our homes and go out to eat with....Good stuff, but will limit it also.  Wow, I was a workaholic before I was retired and now I must rethink my scheduling as I can become an "overscheduleler.  Not sure that is even a word, but it does sort of fit me right now.

The problem as I see it is that there are so many great things to do and people to do them with and places to go....and that does not even touch on the hobbies or jobs and work around home.

My problem is I like it all.  But this mighty warrior is retired and retired early due to chronic fatigue.  Now you see the problem along with me.  I am an "overdoer" for sure and I think that really is a word.  

So I must rethink, pray, make a list and check it twice, going to find out what is lasting and right.  I will keep all my quilting, knitting, sewing, crafts, writing, painting, embroidery, and I will keep my recipe trying and baking and cooking.  I will keep my house clean and neat.  I will keep my friends, but limit how often I go and do things.  I will keep my one favorite auction with most of my auction groupies at it.  I will go only once a month.  I will attend church, but not all the groups.  I don't believe some of them are even my assignment to be at.  I will keep and attend my book discussion group at the library but will and have already resigned from the Friends of the Library Group as president.  I can belong to it and help at book sales, but not everything they do, as they are not all my assignment either.  I won't help with the church food pantry accept to give food to it.  It is not something I really need to get up early on Saturday morning and do.  
I will not attend the Monday night group but will see how the Bible Study goes to see if I will continue it.  

Good things, but oh, the running is what gets me.  If I want to do my hobbies, clean and bake and cook and read, and rest, and walk and love on my Miss Daisy Mae, foxhound.  .  .  well, I have to be home.  It is known that foxhounds need lots of attention and time spent is good time for both of us.  I could blame my pulling back from things on Daisy.  Yes...well, NO, NO, NO.  I could blame it on being ill.  NO to that also, as I feel wonderful most of the time.  I will blame it on nothing.  I will proclaim that I am retired and plan to enjoy it, doing it the way I am assigned to do it.  

You please go ahead and do yours the way you want and blessings to you.

Monday, October 6, 2014


The four seasons are wonderful and I cannot say I have one favorite one.  Fall is upon us, so I am enjoying the days with cool breezes, leaves rustling, cornstalks dry and rattling with movement, colors changing, crop harvest noise of machines and trucks, and so much more.

Our sweet hummingbirds have gone and so or the feeders for another year.  Around here they usually come back out in April.  Geese are doing some flocking up as are blackbirds.  It amazes me to see a large group of blackbirds just sitting on our country roads and having to slow down for them to rise and fly in many directions, but always swarming back together.  The grace in their movement is almost poetic.

With fall this glamper is also somewhat saddened, as the season of camping around here is coming to an end.  For me, it just seems too soon, even if I have been blessed to go out for three or four days at a time with my Daisy Mae, foxhound.  We have gone a total of twelve times this season, but I long to go a few more times in October.  I may then be ready to settle into winterizing my camper.  

After all, there is life after a season of glamping.  I did it last year, my very first year to camp again after 30 years.  I will use the fall and winter season to continue to work on my projects which I do so often while glamping.  

I have three quilts in the making:  1.  a nine patch  2.  a hexagon English Paper Pieces with Downton Abbey fabric  3.  an embroidered block quilt of teapots.  Oh, my head goes on to more as I read quilting magazines and books.  I am enjoying a good read now of "The Quilter's Legacy" by Jennifer Chiaverini, it is a novel.  Then my dear husband purchases a very nice hardcover edition of American Quilts at a weekend auction for me.  

There are socks to continue to knit, and hats, and scarfs, and maybe even a sweater or a jacket.  I also enjoy sewing aprons.  I actually even have an apron for my Daisy Mae to wear.  I had her wear it when passing off some bake goods to a friend recently.  She does look very "pretty in pink".

Okay, I will close for this time....I have talked myself into the fact that I will be "okay" with glamping season coming to an end for now.  Thanks for listening.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014


As I walked with my Daisy Mae on this hot and humid summer day in Northeastern Missouri, I said to Daisy....I talk to her all the don't think it crazy.  She is a good listener because she is a smart foxhound.  Anyway, I said that surely fall was coming.  I even worked inside getting ready.  I dusted and sorted and dug in my bureau and doily drawers and got out all my fall decor. 

Now the fireplace mantel is adorned with crocheted and knit pumpkins and varigated corns which are also knit.  I have a vase with silk sunflowers.  All are placed on a nice fall quilted runner.  The antique bureau is the host home for my collection of Native American figurines with harvest abound.  My antique blanket keeper holds some ceramic pumpkins and my stable on this piece of furniture, an older farming couple with harvest and shovel in hand.  They stand in front of a very old frame and print of two peasant farmers out in the soil praying over their coming crop, standing near a wheelbarrow of potatoes to be planted or maybe they have been harvested also.  It is very special to me as it was my mother in laws.  There is a fall quilt covering the coffee table and a bright yellow tray with ceramic pumpkins and a candle on sitting in the center of the table.  The tv cabinet has one pumpkin on .  My kitchen and dining have fall things also as do the bedrooms and bathrooms.  The study even has some to help celebrate this season.

And celebrate we do, as this fall season holds such wonderful festivals in our area, and at home.  We harvest the last of things and dig and till and clean up, getting ready for a rest season and a clear start to next year.  Today I also took out the tomato and pepper plants, cucumbers also.  All are finished.  Only the sweet potatoes need to be dug yet.  Left are pretty sunflowers and zinnas to brighten the day.  The color is so enjoyable, rich and varied.  The sunflowers are bowing and turning with the sun, almost as if they were smiling and watching the day go by.

So all this preparing and decorating.  I enjoy fall decor as I leave it up from September through November.  I don't tire of the colors and the peacefulness of it all. 

The funny part is as I talked to Daisy on our walk, I recall saying, "It is so hot and humid, surely fall is coming soon.  I have decorated and am ready a little ahead of time, but am some tired of this humidity as it does a number on my asthma.  How silly to think that by some magical willing, that this one country woman can summon up the fall season and weather.  I may be ready, but it all depends on GOD.  I ceased to remember how very thankful I am to live in an area that has four different, changing seasons, of which I enjoy each and every one.  I ceased to remember that I cannot change GOD's timing.  I can just enjoy each day HE gives and feel blessed. 

So I feel blessed with the heat of today, and GOD willing, with the coolness of fall and golden and red leaves, and less yard work, and much time to celebrate the harvest and share with family and friends. 

Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter....are all blessings to be adored as GOD decorates our world during each.   Enjoy the change of the season ahead.

Sunday, August 24, 2014


This country woman has a project closet and I feel blessed to have a place where I can keep and organize things.  I don't have a sewing room anymore, but this closet is a great substitute.  I generally take my machine and sew on the dining room table and like the view to the back yard and gardens and orchard while sewing.  Or on a winter day, I like the cedar grove covered with soft snow and the little drifts formed around the trees as the wind lightly blows. 

It is one thing to have a place for everything in that closet, but that does not mean that this person always puts everything where it should be.  I also take many projects with me when I go off "glamping" (glamour camping) with my Daisy Mae, foxhound.  But when I come home, I often just place the pile back in the closet. Also when I have gone shopping and am worn out from the drive and day out, I put the bags of material on top of whatever is there in the closet.  So, when the closet get messed my surprise...I have to straighten it.  It really needed a major straightening and I had help.

Alorah, my 12 year old granddaughter likes to sort and fuss with craft and project things and I am blessed she also likes to spend time with her grandmother.  So yesterday she came over for the afternoon to swim and help with my project closet.  We did swim and it was relaxing and fun to play and talk and talk and play.  Alorah is very interested in life and she is a good conversationalist. 

The closet was interesting as the first thing she said is, "oh, it does need help!".  So we took all out of the closet, not the top shelf as it mostly had my paints and frames on.  I have part of that stuff in the camper all season, so we just went to the rest of the shelves.  She had great ideas to organize.  She also was so interested in each and every project, my fabrics and yarns for future projects, and books and crocheting.  So in the process of cleaning a closet, I was able to share with Alorah, three quilts I am working on, two pairs of knit socks, some crocheting and new patterns given to me by a new craft/quilting friend, and also fabrics for future projects.  We put things in baskets (which I have plenty of) and moved all the frames from the top shelf to the basement.  Now I really have room for the things I will bring in from the camper...and my closet won't have to be so disorganized. 

The work was done, the sharing was fun, and I even sent her home with some wire to make jewelry and some fun beads and buttons.  But most of all, I sent her home with memories of spending the afternoon with her grandma, a country woman who likes to do things and enjoy life.  She actually said, "Grandma, you are pretty interesting."  Now think about that, I am not even a computer or ipad, or television or in Alorah's case, a book (which this girl loves as much as her grandma), but I am just her grandma and she likes that.  Well, I think she is pretty interesting also. 

Making those memories with our children and grandchildren and even our friends, is very important.  Doing in while working, doing it while playing and even doing it while sitting at the table as a group, eating simple food or a meal that you prepared together.  All great memory makers.


This week I was asked if I would be interested in a Master Gardener Club.  The key word here is "club", as I was thinking, oh, I have thought a time or two of doing that, but maybe I should do it now as I am retired and Roy is done with his chemo.  So I responded that I would be interested.  I looked at the names of some of the people who responded and thought of others who I know in the area who have taken the class.  How fun would it be to be in a class with these ladies.  Yes, I responded that I would.  Then the key word came up...."club", and one sentence reply, " you are thinking of the class, and you cannot be in our club if you have not taken the class!"  

Okay, so I don't fit the makings of this club.  Okay, I have not had the class yet.  I know it is a good class that the university extension office teaches and have even met one of the instructors.  I have friends other places who have taken the class....and this is a little hostility here....and they use the class....planting and growing and canning. 

I spent some time outside working on my flowerbeds, deadheading my daisies and picking the dead heads from my petunias which are flourishing so pink and pretty in my antique wheelbarrel.  I have pretty red petunia in a log planter (log sawed in half the long way which my husband did for me).  They look so nice and the reflection of the entire thing in the pond makes for great pictures.  Then I checked my honeysuckle which is blooming again and growing large and even into the tree it is near.  It smells and looks wonderful and adds a great touch next to the shed.  My sunflowers tower over everything and shine so pretty almost as if they smile at me.  They look pretty with pumpkins growing beneath them in my wonderful garden of produce we have eaten, froze, canned, and shared with many this year.  I walked over to check on my fruit, and yes, my second peach tree is ready to pick.  Two apple trees just not ready yet and a third is always later.  After stopping to see my wonderful perriwinkle color mammoth morning glories (seed is heritage from Baker Seed Company), and marveled at their size, my thought was that they sure do look petty on that vintage screen door we stood on end with posts and used as a trellis.  What an easy way to display them and it was an auction find for $5.00.  It goes with my other decor in the edge of the garden, a garden chair made by my grandson, James, and also a suncatcher wine bottle tree made by my husband.  All make for pretty pictures also.  But I was not done, I picked some zinnas from one of my two patches of mixed hugh blooms and walked over th admire my pampus grasses, and sedums and black-eyed Susans, cactus, and mums  beginning to bloom.  Before going in, I nipped off some basil from my herb bed and a little rosemary.  It is always fun to tie and dry by the kitchen window.  It can be used as gifts also.

So, maybe I would have liked the club and maybe I will do the class, but really, just really, what is in a title anyway.   If I want to go to the class sometime, I know I can and will, but i won't be for the title and belonging to something "special", as I already do.  You see I belong to that group of country women who actually do garden, can, grow, try new things, have fruit trees, use and share the produce and treasure looking at it all and enjoying the process of the growth.......

Oh, I forgot, I have a potato patch also in my old horse paddock.  The soil is rich and loose and my, what wonderful red potatoes we have had to eat and share.  Actually have a wash tub of them now stored in our basement. 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Heat Is On

What an interesting summer this has been.  I have enjoyed having rain showers just as I thought I may need to water.  I have enjoyed cooler weather both for working in the yard and also camping.  But now, August ending, and children back to school, the heat is on.  Wow, in the 90's for most coming days for awhile.  Even at  night, warmth.

Hot weather does not cause me to put up my hands and say, no, I cannot do this or that.  I still take care of the yard, doing the mowing and weedeating myself this season as my husband is battling lymphoma.  He just finished his last chemo today, and will have some scans and then six (five day) weeks of radiation, with a prognosis of survival up to two years.  We will gladly take what we can get.  Oh, back to the yard.  I sorely, and I mean muscles appreciate him time and energy for so many years in keeping our three acres we live on looking good.  Oh, I was also very proud of myself walking out of Farm and Home, with my nice weedeater, more my size, but still able to get those tough weeds down.
It helps me use muscles I had not used in some time.

Our garden is doing okay.  I have already dug all the potatoes, 60 hills, and tilled up that area.  I have taken out all the melons, some good and many rotting due to the moisture.  I took out summer squash, which was wonderful this year. The tomatoes and peppers continue to grow, but my cucumbers are just finishing.  For the fruit, I have harvested one peach tree and one side of the grape arbor.  It is a great plan to plant different types of fruit that bear at different times.  I still have another large peach tree and more grapes to harvest, plus two very full apple trees.  My daughter in love likes to help with that.  A plus this year is making grape jelly to give to all the wonderful people we have gotten to know at the cancer center. 

The weather often was too cool for the pool, but it definately is being enjoyed this week.  I actually got in lots of swimming.  It felt good for these sore and over worked muscles to get some "floating" exercise and relaxing.  I have learned to care for the pool, things I did not already do.  It is good to have knowledge of things and I do appreciate having a pool out here in the country.

Daisy and I continue to camp, as it is my little retreat from "cancer" time.  I plan my times round Roy's schedule with doctors and how he is feeling.  I try to get some of my work load done before going and then finish up after.  This past week I was pleasantly surprised to come home to a mowed yard...thanks to my son who finally sees how tired his mom has gotten, and has pledged to mow each week for me.  I can tell you that I was worn down as the first night of camping, to bed at 8:00 and finished reading by 9:00 and slept until 9:52a.m. the next morning.  Even my Daisy Dog let me sleep long and hard....worn out I believe, but thankful for the reprieve of going "glamping" with my dear friend, Daisy.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Glamping time ahead!

As lawns grow, produce needs harvesting, renters are evicted and mad, berries are ripening at the farm, yes, I am looking forward to a glampin time ahead.  I plan to leave Sunday afternoon after church service as I love going to church and being with my church family.  My son and family was at camp all week but will have to visit or call me at campgrounds.  My daughter was at training for her job all week, but same goes for her.
I am learning that during our journey of cancer (husband has aggressive lymphoma), I get a real need to grab at times away. 

Of course my Daisy Mae (foxhound) will go with me.  Today she got excited when she saw me in my rubber boots which I keep in the camper.  I also use them for berry picking as I don't like poison ivy or snakes.  Blackberries are ripening fast and they are very yummy.  I went today and they probably won't need picking until Tuesday when my husband said he would go for awhile.  It gives him something to do besides sit around.  I must keep him up and going when he is feeling good.  I took Daisy picking with me as she was just so excited about the boots.  I tell you, not much gets past her active and smart mind.

I packed some rootbeer and other food items I could put in ahead of time.  I also put in my wonderful accordion and music.  Sure am glad for this wonderful auction find.  I so enjoy playing music, but cannot see taking my organ or piano in my camper.  That would be a bit much, even it I am a glamper. 

My camper has many quilts and doilies.  It also has "real" dishes, not paper plates, cloth napkins, placemats and table clothes, and many teapots and tea cups, plus a very nice vintage chrome electric perculator (on ebay they are selling for around $50.00 but auction purchase it was $3.00).  I also have a vintage chrome one slice electric toaster, auction price of $2.00 and ebay now selling for over $30.00.  For any glampers, auctions are really a way to get some of this vintage stuff.  It just makes that coffee and toast more fun in the morning.  I have many books, journels, art supplies also packed.

Oh, I can hardly wait until Sunday afternoon.  I even have my firewood in the truck already....and can taste those s'mores which I make with windmill cookies instead of graham crackers.  Just one more yummy "glamping" thing.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Summer Time/ The Living is not always "easy".

Summer time upon all of us and it has been hot, humid, sunny, and wonderful so far.  I cannot believe that today is July 1, 2014 being half gone.  It has been an eventful year so far and wondering what will be it's finish.

My husband has stage 3 Diffuse Large B Cell Lymphoma; he has cancer, and right now is not doing so well.  We are rejoicing in the care he gets from our local cancer center and then many people in neighborhood and church and family that show care and concern.  He has good and bad days.  Therefore, so do I.

I have taken on all of my past projects and hobbies, including my "glamping", trying to go at least two times a month for a few days at a time.  I have learned to drive and mow with our zero radius mower and must admit I enjoy it.  It is like a little race car that just trucks along and gets so close to things that it leaves less weed eating....which is good.  My grandson, age 16, has been doing the weed eating for me, but this week he grew up lots by getting his driver's license and also a job.  So, this may also become one of the many jobs I have gained.  At least I enjoy the great outdoors.  I till the garden, hoe and weed, but have done some of that before. 

Our garden is growin well.  Today I dug some of the 60 hills of red potatoes and they are wonderful.  I passed some on to family and have a very large bowl all washed and ready for use setting on our kitchen counter.  Yes, you can tell I am a country person when I think potatoes in a bowl on the counter are pretty.  It comes with the planting, hoeing and watching them grow and then getting to dig and wash them.  A few years ago my husband got me a nice spade for digging potatoes and I am pretty proud of it....and my potatoes.

Our corn is tasseling, and I picked my first cucumber today.  I also pulled out the pea plants and our lettuce as they are done for the season.  I may plant some in a fall garden.  

Swimming time comes each day, even if I am tired from all my work.  It helps restore those sore muscles.  I always take time in the morning to have coffee, watch my dogs play, and sit on the porch swing.  I have decided to not let this parenthesis of our life called cancer stop me from enjoying each day here in our wonderful country setting and also when I get to go glamping with my Daisy Mae.

We have already gone four times this season and have enjoyed the time away.  I think it is needed, even if I seem to have lots of work when I get back home.  A new friend and support person told me that I must keep the parts of my life I can as it is too hard to try to pick them back up once you are through this journey.  She lost her husband to cancer six years ago and during his year illness, she said she gave up everything and his life and cancer were all that she was living for.  So she said that it took her about five years to regain just some of her life.  She advised me to not make that mistake as it does not help anyone, even the person with the cancer.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Rural Missouri Spring Day

It seems that I have been pretty busy these spring days and have not been posting or even on facebook much.  I do apologize, but also know that springtime does get going fast.  It seems that the cold held on for so long and then, wow, now it is greening up and warmer, and with a little rain storm here and there, my spring flowers have pushed out of the ground at a fast rate.  Along with all this, comes lots of outside work and fun projects.

Roy and I got busy painting.  He did the old metal chairs and table by the pond in a new coat of paint, a nice bright red, my favorite.  We also purchased two more old metal chairs at a farm auction and they are yellow and white and look like new.  No painting needed there.  I had to paint my propane tanks on my "glamper" and also painted the tire cover to make it personal for my Daisy Mae and me.  I painted it white and then in my favorite colore (red, remember from above), I did lettering reading "Glamping Katie and Daisy Mae" .  It turned out well and is one more spring project done joyfully I might add.  It means I soon will be able to go camping again.  Oh, I also had to paint some signs for our huge garage sale coming up this weekend.

You see, I do consignment booths at a local shop in Hannibal called Vera Belles.  If you are this way sometime, stop in.  The owners are such nice people and there is lots of good stuff.  Like I said, I have booths there and I have nice things.  I get most of them from auctions, which gives us lots of fun and entertainment while purchasing these items.  I have my auction groupies and it is fun to see the different friends at several different auctions we attend. 

We were invited to attend a "storage war's" auction...not the show...but a storage business needed sixteen units sold off as the owners had not paid for months.  I was glad to hear that they gave them almost six months before they disposed of the contents.  We were able to walk past the opened unit and just look in as we were passing, but not really know what was in it.  I was able to bid and purchase a 5 x 10 x 10 unit and it was very full.  So, after three pickup loads to our garage, lots of opening of boxes, which my family enjoyed helping with, and lots of sorting, and more organizing and pricing needed, I will have a two day sale this weekend.  I was able to give to a few friends and family some items they needed or wanted and I kept some things for my consignment shop.  There still is so much more, lots of collectiables, and I am hoping people will come and like and purchase things.  If there is lots left, we have arrangements with the same auctioneer to take things to his consignment auction where we can sell all the rest and he gets 20%.  So it is lots of entertainment and some profit also. 

If you have not experienced auctions, do try them.  It is a fun way to be around your community people and also meet new people.  We enjoy meeting up with our daugter on Friday night auctions and having dinner together, at the auction, and auction food can be "good eating".  Our grandson also attends with us and has a little business of his own on the computer in a local "buy,sell, trade" forum.  He does quite well.  It is nice to see his business knowledge and common sense.  He is my good garage sale helper.

Many people like garage sales and I don't but must have one as my garage is full.  I paid $175.00 for this unit and have given away about $250.00 worth of things, have about $100.00 worth of things for my consignment, and then the garage sale income coming in this weekend.  So I believe this was a fun and good "one time" thing to do.  I don't believe I want to do it again.  As I said, I don't really like having or going to garage sales.  Auctions are more my thing.

Amongst all the spring time work of planting and cleaning things up and painting, it is fun to take time to go to auctions or garage sales also.  Find your thing.  Maybe it is going to a consignment shop and none of the others.  It is so great we are all different and yet can enjoy our full and happy lifes.
Happy Spring to you all.  Get out there and get moving, planting, camping, fishing, whatever it is, but do it and smile!   It is really springtime in rural Missouri.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Learning Curve

It seems that lately everywhere I read or listen to news, I am hearing things about memory loss as one ages.  Well, we are all aging of course, but as I will soon be 66, and am so "thoroughly" enjoying my retirement, my thoughts, which I can still remember, are to keeping that learning curve going so that my memory stays as in tack as it can.  So this retired rural Missouri woman does many a thing to keep her brain alert.

After I retired, I decided to make a list of many things I wanted to do the first few years of retirement.  I pulled out that "glamping" journal and saw that I had accomplished them over the winter months when I could not go glamper camping.  However, as the weather starts to warm, I still have more and more plans to challenge myself with the learning curve. 

Some of the items I planned to do this past winter season were: 

Quilting, did a large French colors tied and hand quilted blocked pieced quilt which I will use in my camper.  I also purchased several quilts at auctions and fixed them, for use at home or in the camper. 

Sewing, did some messages bags and also sewed several different storage, lunch bags with ties.

Embroidery, finished my two pairs of pillowcases for the bed at home, plus on more glamping pillow case for the camper.  I also purchased a project to work on this summer while camping, in red work, a wall quilt.

Knitting, several pairs of socks for myself and some friends, 30 or more newborn hats for the hospital, and now plans for hats for the Native American Elders, a few sweaters for Congo project, and then some mittens for myself and family and friends.

Writing, did lots of journals, letters, cards, and yes, started my blog.

And to top it all off, I did, yes, I am still doing my auditing of two college classes as Hannibal LaGrange University.  I have been in the American Drama class, enjoying reading and discussing plays.  Then the other class is History of Slavery.  The topic is very interesting and discussion and reading good.  However, I have found that the professor is so very smart that sometimes he just gets lost and does not stay on track.  Well, that is part of the learning curve select and acknowlege what is working for me.

My husband and I also have been doing nightly games of Yahtzee.  It is good interaction and matching and math skills to help the brain. 

I have diagramed my veggie gardens and sorted heirloom seeds and planned to plant my hotbed soon.  Gardening is such a healthy activity for all ages.  Part of the fun in the winter is planning and plotting for the coming season, recalling all the wonderful produce that we used and shared.

Also, I stay active with family, church, community, my consignment booths, which also mean going to auctions, and now as weather permits soon, my dear foxhound, Daisy and I will head out to camp, or as we call it "glamping"....glamour camping.  I look forward to my teapots full of warm teas and sitting by the campfire, long walks with Daisy, and sitting and knitting, etc.  My Daisy just turned two this week, and she was so very excited when we moved the camper from its winter storage behind the shed to our side drive.  She knows what is ahead for us two friends.  I know many of my other family and friends will come out and have campfires with us.  Some may even spend a night with us. 

The college audit classes will end the end of April, and glamping will really start, plus my wonderful gardens will start also.  So this mind will continue to learn and be active.  And I will plan for more projects and classes to keep the "Learning Curve" for my old but not inactive mind working as well as it does....for many years LORD Willing.

Monday, March 10, 2014

SPRING LIKE Weather....yes, oh, yes

This winter seems to be coming to an end, and today was one nice day...almost 70 here in rural northeast Missouri.  I so enjoyed hearing the Redwing Blackbirds as Daisy Mae and I took, not just one, but two long walks.  And in between those two walks, I took my neighbor's dog home.  It seems Skip got away from them and they had not missed him yet.  My dogs were glad to see him, so they all played a bit, but then I leashed and walked him down the gravel road to his home.  Jonathon was just coming for him, so yelled "thanks" and I unleased Skip so he could head home.  Yes, here in my neck of the woods we even know our neighbor's dog's names.  I do feel for those that don't even know their neighbors.

Around the pond we saw a turtle sunning itself.  I know that even these hardshelled beasts must enjoy the warmth that was shining all over us today.  Our snow is gone accept in some of the ditches, but Daisy had to venture in those areas to see if she could sniff what had been there before we went that way.  She found rabbit, squirrel, deer and coyote tracks.  Of course, she also found Skip tracks, and looked longingly his way when we passed their house on our second walk. 

It is interesting to me how animals can become pals and enjoy each other.  It also makes me wonder why we cannot be more like animals in this area.  It seems that people like to complain, gripe, and be frustrated at their life and others lifes instead of enjoying each other.  I know on facebook that so many are negative about things.  But you are never going to have a positive day if all you are is negative.  I do believe it all starts with you.  My grandmother used to say, "You can get up and say , Thank  GOD for another day, or you can say, Oh, no, another day to work, etc."   These days we should be happy if we have a job and work.  Being retired, I still fill my days and work on my "to do" list.  By the way, my husband has one also which he works hard at finishing.  I am always there to add more, and he just laughs.  See, being positive can even make you laugh some. 

Tonight my dogs and I sat and watched our beautiful sunset.  There is so much to enjoy and one thing for sure to enjoy is that Spring is just around the corner.  I am ready....glamping will soon follow, and who cannot feel happy and positive about that.  I know Daisy Mae is and I am imagining that she will meet some other dog friends when she is glamping this season. 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

February Ending

Originally I am from Wisconsin, with long and cold winters.  Since 1989, I have lived in Missouri, considering it a southern state.  After all, the history tells of civil war, both sides here in Missouri, of slavery in my county being 20% of the population before the civil war.  Yes, to me that means south.  The people speak southern to my thinking.  However, weather wise, this year has been nothing about southern. It has been frigid many, too many, days, and it has been snowy, for long days, with snow staying on for weeks.  Does it remind me of Wisconsin.  Never.  But, the winter, with its needed moisture, has been a brutal one this year.  I saw tree branches crashing to the ground due to ice build up.  One thing we certainly have here in storms....icky!.  I personally was in one blizzard that came on in the short time of ten minutes from my home, driving down Hwy. 61, in blinding snow, to get to the hospital for blood work.  So I kept going, very slowly and made it safe, only to find that on my way out of the hospital, there were about four inches of snow.  Yes, four inches.  I was NOT in there that long, maybe 30 minutes at the most.  So does that remind me of Wisconsin....NO. 

Wisconsin is a beautiful state in so many ways.  It is my home state.  However, I have lived in so many other states that I won't list them here.  And in those "other" states, I have lived in many different areas.  I tried to enjoy the journey and find something good about each place I lived.  It was, truelly hard for me, to find something good about Indiana, accept that I only lived there for 1 1/2 years.  I have to consider that when moving to gray skied Indiana, I had moved from 90% sunny days beautiful state of Colorado.  Now that is hard to beat.

But each state, each place, taught me things about the place and about myself.  I am thankful for each adventure, and I really mean some were really adventures.  Like the time I lived in a truck camper with two dogs and three children, and homeschooled, while camping in the Rocky Mountains.  Wonderful time.   Good memories.  Another time for that story for sure. 

I have come to the conclusion that none of these states, even Missouri, will compare to Wisconsin.  I was born there.  I was raised there.  I lived there until I was 21, then the moving started.  I did move back two different times, once for nine years and once for only two years in my adult life with children.....and dogs, of course.  I have lots of memories, and bonds to Wisconsin.  But let's get real.  I have lived in Missouri since 1989, in good and bad times, but 1989 is a long time now that it is 2014.  So, is Missouri home.  Yes, in many ways and I will most likely live here the rest of my life, in rural Missouri hopefully, in this home, with my dogs and my yard and my garden and my camping as long as I can, and my painting, and my knitting, and my baking, and my quilting, etc. etc. etc.  Oh, those etc's make me sound like "The King and I".  At least I am not that far away from home.  but what is home?

Home is where you are, where you make your life.  Therefore, I have been blessed so much to have many homes in many places, and currently, and for many years now, I have lived here in rural northeast Missouri.  No, it is not Wisconsin, and No, it never will be Wisconsin.  But it does not have to be.  I will let it be Missouri, or as my husband says...Missourah.  I am in the south....with snow and cold at least this winter.

And to close.....please, oh, please, spring, please come soon.  But it will be the same time.  March 20th.  Happy Spring to all.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Winter Wonderland/Inside Creativity

Winter in Missouri this year has been extremely cold, with ice and snow that stays and stays.  It does give me fond memories of living/growing up in Wisconsin northland.  I would ice skate, ski, sled, snow shoe, and just have plain fun in the snow with snow forts and snowmen and snow horses.  But as an older adult, I am not sure I am appreciating the cold weather for any of those reasons.  I must admit I enjoy walking my Daisy Mae, bundling up of course, but being out in the falling snow and slidding along on the ice patchs in the yard and driveway.  I like crunching the thin ice on puddles of water and have even been able to walk on our pond this year.  I only recall being able to do that one other time in the twenty some years I have lived in rural northern Missouri.

What I am enjoying most is the inside time.  I enjoy the slow mornings, not getting dressed and out the door.  I enjoy the time to sit and knit, whatever project I am working at that time, and watching the early morning news programs.  By the way, right now I am working up some baby hats for charity gifts for the hospital.  They go fast and are a nice change from larger projects.  And, of course, I always have a small basket with a pair of socks I am working on.  My antique dressers right side top drawer is filled with about 20 pair of homemade knit socks I wear, but I continue to make them for myself and family.  I believe it is my knitting passion (socks). 

I also am enjoying quilting my large French colored block quilt by hand.  My dear dog Daisy likes this quilt also.  Whenever I get it out on the bed to look at it, she jumps up and lays on it, looking up at me, with a smile I believe.  I place it on the dining room table to quilt, while listening to books on CD from my library.  Daisy again jumps up on the table and lays on the quilt, as if it is where she belongs.  I had to tell her that I really will finish this quilting project, which is a big one, but when I do, we will use the quilt on the home bed and also the camper (glamper) bed.  I think I saw another smile on my dear foxhounds face.  Maybe she is not an English foxhound after all and is French, because she sure does like the colors in this quilt.

Of course other things I spend time doing are crafting (homemade Valentines made with my 11 year old granddaughter, Alorah), and reading....lots of it, from my Bible, to books on CD, to magazines such as Orion and MaryJaneFarms, and knitting, quilting magazines, plus plays.  Yes, plays.  You see, I am taking some audit classes at Hannibal LaGrange University.  It is lots of fun, all learning but no papers to write or tests to take, and much cheaper then for the credits.  I was reading in the AARP magazine that many "baby boomers" are auditing classes for the fun and continued learning while they work their brains, and meet new people.  So, I applied that bit of reading to action of doing. 

Cold weather can be hard on us, but we need to bundle up and go out when we can.  Fresh air helps our health.  Inside time is also something we need to use wisely.  You see, I have so many projects planned, that I am hoping that spring does not come "to" soon.  This lady has a list she is working hard on to complete.  Well, I can keep the list for next winter if I don't get it all done. 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Adventures in Dog Walks

As many times as I take my Daisy Mae for walks in our rural area, most often in the same three directions, she is always so excited.  She seems to find a new adventure each and every time.  She smells new things, and what does that tell her?  I can imagie as I walk the same areas, appreciating the nicer weather, and liking my rural life, she is smelling who or what was in that area since she was there, and who or what passed this or that way.  Today as we walked on the far end of the pond bank, Daisy just went this way and that way.  She alerted me to large tracks at the pond edge and then into the woods.  Oh, it was exciting to see that I was right in my thinking last night.  Late into the night, with the quiet of our area, I was awakened to many howling coyotes, close, I thought, very close.  Yes they were.  My Daisy Dog pointed that out to me in our daily walk today.  She is the investigator, noise to the ground, sticking it in each little snow hole that a squirrel or rabbit makes.  It is fun to watch her discover her world anew each walk.  Now, I also, must take things anew every walk and every day.  Life has so much to offer us all.  Life is given to us new everyday.  I feel blessed to be retired, and have the health, the energy, and the desire to go out into nature.  Enjoying the great outdoors helps me think clearer and feel better also. It gives me time away from household or other pressing issues of things that need to be done.  Also enjoying my dog who is enjoying her walks, helps make for new discoveries, and also some ackowledgement that I do understand some of nature...even that coyotes are closer then usual. 

Friday, January 10, 2014

Rain in Janurary

This late morning as my husband and I were sitting in our living room talking and visiting about my two college classes I have started to audit at Hannibal LaGrange University, where I graduated some years ago, wow, the wonderful sound of thunder and then a downpour.  It took away lots of the snow, and of course, the weather is warmer, and it freshened up our outdoors some.  I was able to go clean off the back patio and stand back and see how fresh a good rain, even in Janurary works for us.  However, like everything else, people like to complain.  So when I opened up on facebook today, my church page, I was just disappointed at so many people just not appreciated what we are given from GOD, nature, or what/whoever, you wantto credit.  I credit GOD.  But many just like complaints, not seeing that it makes their days sad and long and tiring.  Maybe that is why at age "almost 66" (in April), I still feel happy and rejoice in new days and what new things there will be in that day.  It is all about attitude.  Frankly, I feel sad for those with those "stinking" attitudes.

My day in rural Missouri has been mostly indoors, which is something I don't do often, but with the cold we have had and the rain today,it is time to reflect plus do things that need to be done inside.  I took to doing a little cleaning and then went on to do some book searching.  With my new college classes comes a renewed enjoyment of all the old old books we have from my husband's grandfather, who was a  lawyer and judge in our state years ago. He had such a wonderful collection of books, sets of leather bond Edgar Allen Poe and the Spectator, Addison papers, plus a set of Theodore Roosevelt's about the west, and on of Mark Twain's writings.  What I was looking for were some old plays which I did not find, not the ones I wanted, but I found other exciting things.  Some old autograph books....years ago people used to get autographs, well wishes and prose/poetry in little bound books from classmates.  I even found a prose/poetry book and an old McGuffey reader with wonderful prose/poetry in it.  A little red/black covered prayer book was fun to leaf through also.  All are in delicate shape and I felt special just being able to touch and turn some of the pages and do some special reading in them today.

The rainy day gave me a blessing of searching treasures from the past that are located right in my own home.  Yes, we also have the hugh walnut bookcase / secretary that used to stand in Rueben Roy's law office so many years ago.  In it I found a lovely little book that I have seen before but never paid the attention I should have to it.  It was not just my husband's grandfathers.  It was that grandfather's, Roy's great great grandfathers 1803.  Now that is something to just hold and cherish.  I cannot help but feel some of the past in just holding these items.

Cold rainy Janurary days and being interested in life, no complaining but rejoicing in each day we have make for a wonder of gifts....we just have to look for them.  So enjoy the rest of the winter months, rain, shine, snow or sleet....we will get through them.  It is just a matter of how your days and my days compare.  As for me, I know I will be on a treasure hunt of life well lived.

Thursday, January 2, 2014


The New Year rings in the same I suppose, country and city, depending on the people.  I can only speak for what we seem to experience and do here in rural Missouri.  Most of us seem to stay home, or just get together with some neighbors and play cards, table games and eat all the great foods people brought together...which people call potluck or pitch in.  Either way, it is always lots and always yummy.  There are those that may have saves some fireworks from the 4th of July, and those with a gun or two to fire off at midnight.  Of course, that happening depends if you are with a crowd that stays up that long.

Years ago we had to drive to Indiana and have our Christmas and New Year's time with my son and family.  They could not get away due to him being a pastor and having little children, it just seemed easier for us to go that way.  After a number of years, they decided to move this way, and now live only miles from us.  We get together on Christmas but they are busy with church stuff on New Year's usually.

We and the group we did things with have all gotten older and some now do things with their married children, so we usually just spend our New Year's eve at home.  We may see the fireworks from Austrailia as it happens during our morning hours , but we seldom see the happenings here in New York, etc, until New Year's Day news reports.  We just don't stay up that long.

As Roy and I are into playing Yahtzee lately, we just continued to play our games on New Year's Eve, but we upped the time and instead of six games (which is the amount on a sheet to score the games), we actually splurged and did two sheet.  Wow, six games.  The funny things is that when we play which we seem to be doing every night for a bit (six games), I will win three and Roy wins three.  When we played twelve games, Roy won six and I won six.  I suppose we are just consistant people!

Then to start the year out right, we planned to go to the special New Year's Day auction at Fall Creek, Illinois.  It is called the Green Parrot Auction because it is in a building that used to house the Green Parrot Louge, with drinks and dancing.  Never went then.  But I would say it is a "hopping place" as an auction house.  This special auction had more deluxe items and collection items.  I came home with prizes of a nice handmade quilt for only $30.00 and also an antique cameo necklace (metal is brass), and paid $45.00 for it.  Of course they had some Fiesta ware and I bid and bought a nice pitcher in a blue that is a retired color and paid only $20.00 instead of so much more when new or in a discontinued stock online.  My New Year's bargains were great.  My bigger bargain was spending time with auction "groupie" friends, including my next door neighbors who we ended up sitting next to us.  The amazing thing is that they live just down the country road from us, but she knew I would be at the auction and she brought my Christmas gift (homemade) to me at the auction.  It is just how things seem to  happen with us country people. 

Happy New Year to everyone.  Don't rush around so much that you miss the good things in life.