Category Archives: observations

Stuff I Am Liking

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This post has been in the drafts box for some time, I just keep adding to it. Here are a few things that I am especially liking these days.

I was having a big problem with dry skin earlier this winter, I am prone to this, but it was particularly annoying because my face was so itchy. Abby’s former dermatologist had recommended CeraVe lotion, because she is a Sahara herself. She had a very good response to the lotion, and when she was looking for a new face wash decided to try theirs. When I was complaining about my distress, she let me try her new product, that she was liking a LOT. Within a few days my itchy dry face was gone, and I am now a satisfied customer!

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I think I must have read about this or Mousey (my personal cosmetics information guide) told me about it, but wherever it made itself known, I think it has been helpful. I purchased it from Better Health, and the gal who helped me find it said this was a good brand, so I went with it. I put it on my clean, dry, skin after I clean it with the CeraVe and my Clairsonic Mia. Just a light layer under my eyes, and everywhere else, focusing extra around my mouth and chin. Because seriously, where did all those lines come from??!! I’m not kidding, it looks like I have some sort of snake bite scars! I do wash off the excess with a warm wash cloth just before bed so it doesn’t just end up on my pillow case. My skin remains soft and hydrated after.

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Here are three more skin related tidbits, to be worn together. For the last few years the majority of my skin care questions to Mousey have been about old skin. This has caused her to have to research, because she is not old.

I have never been a connoisseur of pricey makeup. I don’t think I have ever ventured out of the isles of Meijer, Target or CVS for any cosmetics. Until the last few years, I had never even worn moisturizer on my face. In the summer i wore a little powder, bronzer as blush, eyeliner and mascara. At some point I started recognizing that the old grey mare (literally and figuratively) just ain’t what she used to be. I needed some kind of regimen.

Enter Olay Pro X. Welcome to the family. I think Capri P may have told me about this. I started to feel a little better about my hide. Now I realize that in the scope of products, these are probably reasonable, but having never worn any such stuff, I had a little sticker shock. They have lasted a long time though.

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And then Mousey found me this at Ulta, one of her favorite stores. Having already been broken down with the price of the afore mentioned moisture, I just took her advice and grabbed it. We did have a coupon, that made it easier to bear. And I will say that this is the second winter I have used the same tube and there is still a ton left.

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The other thing I use to make myself presentable is from Arbonne. I really like their loose powder. It sets the foundation nicely and gives your face a nice glow. That sounds really dumb, but I don’t want to look like matte Hag Barbie. I have also used their bronzer as blush for years now. I buy these products from Mrs. Schmenkman’s darling niece. Funny story, she works at a nearby city hall. When my order arrives she texts me and we arrange a time to meet in her parking lot. She tells me to park by a side door then she comes out and we exchange a check for the goods. I told her feel like we are conducting illicit business!!!!

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So there you have it, what it requires for me to look presentable these days!

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Building a Better Mouse Trap

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Here are some of the changes we would like to make to the winter home in Estero. They will all add to function, and I am a fan of functionality!

This is the extent of the kitchen cupboard space in the new house. Seriously. that is it. And not shown on the other side of the fridge, that is not that massively wide in real life, is a pantry with white wire shelving.

Because I am nosey, i looked to see what one might store in those little bitty top cupboards, that many of you short people could not even reach! One had paper plates, another had flashlights. I quit peeking. Basically, not that useful for storage for anything of any sort of big-ness. Large-ness? Heft? Girth? Size? And if we decide to remove that half wall to open up the kitchen, sometime in the future, we would lose 4 skinny cupboards in one fell swoop. So, if you discount them, you have exactly 3 top cupboards to hold dishes, glasses and mugs. Not including the functionally useless skinnys above the microwave and fridge. I’m just going to say it. We require more. OK, I require more. Honey might be able to manage, but he might not. He takes up a considerable amount of our cabinetry with his pills and spices, and he has hogged 4 drawers between the kitchen and laundry room as his own personal junk drawers!!! So clearly, we need some more space!

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When we went to the open house for our house, we also hit some others that were the same models, just to see how they had done things. We saw a few really good ideas that we could try and copy. This was an option. Take out the thin white wire pantry and add this with adjustable shelving. We would most likely use it for non perishable food and bigger pots and Tupperware.

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And this would be IMMENSELY helpful!!! Oh, there’s the thin white pantry, just like we have, on the left. These folk must have had even more Tupperware than I do to require another thin white pantry type thing!!! So ignore that and rest your gaze on the extra cupboards and counter on the back wall!!

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That would make everything SO much better! I then wouldn’t even mind if Honey commandeered a drawer and cupboard!!!

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Here is another idea Honey is going to lift. A door between the spare bedroom and bath to give your guests a little more privacy. Also cut down on morning or evening noise.

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The previous owners were also the original owners. This house is almost 20 years old and I have a question. Where have you been putting your laundry detergent for the last 20 years? I am going to need some sort of cabinet or shelving situation in here. I don’t want to look at that stuff all the time, especially since this room is just to the left of the front door.

There is also a door to the right in this room, with a space behind it. I can’t remember exactly what was there but it did not seem as functional to me as it could be. To be discussed at a later date.

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And last but not least, the extended lanai. The owners had requested and been approved to add on, so Honey made sure that approval would transfer to us. It would expand our entertaining and living space very nicely!

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Well, that’s all we think we need to do! There could be other projects or tweaks, but all in all, we are very pleased 🙂

Schnibbles

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I thought I was finished being sick when we last spoke, but alas, I was not. The other cold symptoms have left but I am still coughing. It feels like that could go on for a while. While my immune system was waging war with the virus, my ever present kidney infection decided to make its move and overrun the bladder territory. It is being crushed mercilessly by a 5 day course of Cipro.

Anyone else not a fan of the Cipro? I don’t like the way it makes me feel. Weak, headache, heart racing. Plus it came with 4 pages of side effect notes, which is alarming in itself. I guess it’s better than a reaction to Bactrim, but not by much.

Besides coughing, I have done a few things around here. I got a temporary crown. Apparently the second tooth from the back had 3 cracks, that were causing it to feel…insecure… while using it. I was glad the dentist could figure out which one it was because I was unsure if it was that one or its big brother behind it. It has probably had a filling in it for over 40 years, I guess it has fulfilled its purpose. I thank you for your service.

The gals in our house have all had their hairs done. The Ab-Cat is all chemically straightened for another 6 or so months, Mousey is heavily highlighted once again, and I have had my silver lining removed for another 6 weeks. I have one more client today and then I am ON VACATION for 2 weeks!!!!

Honey and I are heading to The Sunshine State for a little R and R, so attention to the blob could be spotty, or not. I make no guarantees in any direction. I have brought the suitcases up from the basement, gone to the library with Abby to check out some reading material, started an area on the kitchen table with things we need and add to it daily, and have a pile of clothing in the bedroom awaiting packing. It’s getting real!

We have had some warmer weather that has melted a goodish amount of Winter Storm Mateo, but I have to say, some of the roads in our town are not going to make it through this winter! I thought Warren was a horror, but Morton Taylor is an ABOMINATION!!!! The people in charge of such things should be ASHAMED of themselves!!!!!!! And don’t give me that garbage about it being the county’s responsibility, get that dumb truck out there with the tar pellets in it and fill in those TRENCHES!!!!!!! Good common sense, its like a war torn country out here!

In good news, I have lost 8 pounds on the Keto diet! I don’t think I will make my goal of 15 before we go on vacation, but HOORAY for 8!!!!! We have decided we will eat normal on our trip, but as Honey said, not go hog wild! I asked what that meant, he said we would not have ice cream twice a day. Not sure that was really a thing, but it must have happened a time or two to stick in his mind! All I can say is chicken pot pie, I’m coming for ya!!!!!!!

We have been watching The Olympics, or should I say DVR-ing them, because OH.MY.WORD. the commercials! So many commercials! We loved the snowboarding and are heavily invested in figure skating at the moment. Abby and I have been using the ever present commercial time to goggle old figure skaters we used to love! A lot of them are fairly active on social media, hi Scott Hamilton, Kristie Yamaguchi and Michelle Kwan! Have not heard Honey mention hockey so I’m guessing that is not in high gear yet.

Have a pleasant Monday, I got stuffs to do!

Missed Moments of 2017

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Hi Guys, have some dribbles of stuff to document for today. Cause that is what this here blog is, documentation of our life.

The Mitten is currently bracing for an unnamed storm that could produce 1 or 12 inches of snow and ice. I heard wild tales earlier in the week, but things were significantly downgraded by yesterday. So really, it could be anything in the whole anything kingdom. It has been a strange week, starting in the negative temperatures last Friday to 57 degrees yesterday. That’s what we natives like to call Pure Michigan. Just like our state slogan proclaims.

Let’s go back to last fall when we had kinder, gentler temperatures. Our neighbor Karen texted this picture of a most beautimous rainbow directly over our house! The trees were in fine form I must say!

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When The Boy and The Dane were in town last November, they got together with Elyk and The Boy’s former small group leader Mike, from when they were in middle school! All of them have married in the last few years and in a twist of fate, all of them became fathers this year! Just a fun fact here, in the picture they are standing in order of their baby’s birth, with Mike and Jen going first in March, with Elyk and Pug Mama taking second in May, and The Boy and The Dane bringing up the rear in July. What is amusing to me is that they married in the exact opposite order. Of course Elyk’s position remained the same, smack in the middle!

Here the guys are with their offspring!

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When we bought our two new couches, some 3 years ago, we stuck our old ones down the basement in case one of the kids needed them upon setting up their own homesteads. Many parts of our basement contain many similar items kept for the same reason. The Boy and The Dane already have two couches, so they were unlikely to need a third, plus it was not their colors. Mousey claimed one because she is needy and she knows how comfortable they are!

I was telling The Peanuts Champ that a friend’s son was looking for a replacement couch for his that broke. I took pictures and sent them to her with the warning that they were heavy and her son would need to bring help to get it out of the basement. Because Honey is old and tired and while on flat land I can be helpful, I am not a useful engine moving things up a flight of stairs.  The Peanut’s Champ said if things did not work out there, her son Josh might be interested as he was moving out and also needy. The other friend’s son found a couch elsewhere, so Josh came and got ours!

We told him the same thing, bring friends; it’s heavy, so he brought these charming fellows. We also told him how comfy it was, and a great napping couch! The reason I tell you this whole tale is because of the next part, which was so darn cute and resourceful!!

Josh was renting the second floor of a house, and his friends lived on the first floor. He is a math major, so he brought his measuring tape and paper to do math stuff to figure out if they could navigate the couch around a tight turn in the stairway, where it would be hanging over the railing a large percentage! According to their calculations they felt confident they could do it! They sent this picture when they got it in!!!

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Josh is on the right and it was such a pleasure to help him out on his new adventure! He was Mousey’s first best friend as preschoolers and has grown into a fine young man. On a funny note, he did not have a bed for the first little bit after moving in so he slept on the couch. He agreed that it was a good sleeping couch!!! Best of luck Friend! ❤

One of our jobs on the Admin team at BSF is to show the love to our group and children’s leaders. Our normal once a month fellowships are sack lunch affairs, but twice a year, at Christmas and end of year, we do things a little fancier. Our Class Administrator, Trenda, decided we should decorate a little different. I feel the need to insert here that there was not one person on the whole team that felt decorating was their love language!!!!! I was looking on Pinterest for new ideas, and most of them included wooden rounds. The first place I remembered seeing those was at Nurse Lauren’s wedding last fall.

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When I called Rae-Babe to ask about how she put hers together, she graciously offered to let us borrow hers!!! The rounds AND the hurricane globes!!!

I met with Trenda at Michael’s and we picked out a garland that we cut up to use on our 8 tables. She produced evergreen clippings and actual cranberries, I found candles at IKEA and there was a group leader who arrived early who said she LOVED to decorate!!! Thank you Lord, it looked loverly!!! Thanks Rae-Babe for the use of your stuff!

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Enjoy your weekend, I am hunkered down for who knows what!

Wednesday Hodgepodge

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Hi Guys! Glad you stopped by! Click on the button below if you would like to join in.

From this Side of the Pond

1.  What’s something blogging has taught you about yourself?

When I started blogging in January of 2008 I had no idea what I was doing! I’m not even sure why my good friend Mrs. Schmenkman and I wanted to start on this endeavor, but we both began the same week. This was my very first post!

I just asked The Boy what I should say and he asked me “why would you want a blog if you don’t know what to say???” Thanks to The Girl for helping me get this up and running. That would be one thing my friends could tell you about me; I am computer illiterate. Surely I will get better as I go!

I’m not quite sure why I wanted to start this, but hopefully it will be a way for me to keep in better touch with those I want to be in better touch with, and be able to share what I am doing, making, bargains found and very random thoughts! Let the blogging begin! 

I did get better as I went!

I have never been one for keeping a diary or journal and I don’t really consider myself a writer, but I think what blogging has taught me about myself is I do enjoy coming here and writing down my stream of thought. The fact that I have done it faithfully for almost 9 years has shown me that I am committed to preserving these days of our life. When I go back and read a post from years gone by, I am always thankful to have this memory bank, this place of recollection. It’s priceless to me.

 2.  Leftovers…are you in the ‘reheat and eat’ camp or the ‘put them in the fridge until they spoil and then toss them’ camp? What’s your favorite thing to have leftover? What can you not abide as a leftover?

I usually like leftovers. I think soup is a great leftover and sometimes better the next day! Meat with no gravy is usually a pretty yucky leftover.
3. ‘Me time‘…your thoughts?

“Me time” sounds so self involved. That being said, I am certainly not opposed to being able to do something I want to do! I can remember being a young mom and longing for 30 minutes to myself to read or watch something I wanted on tv!

I guess the phrase “me time” sounds indulgent, expensive and selfish, but maybe others see it as something else.
4. When people come to you for help, what do they usually want help with?

Haircuts or covering their grey, getting the right BSF Bible study lesson if they are going to be gone, helping them remember some random song lyric or other fun fact. I am a fountain of useless information.
5. If your childhood had a smell what would it be? Tell us why.

Bubble gum, Sweet Tarts, Jolly Ranchers, Slow Poke suckers and chlorine. Because we loved nothing better than riding our bikes up to the corner store to buy candy and hanging out at my Aunt Nancy’s pool.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

I was in Five Below yesterday and came across this. Who would put this on their Christmas tree?

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Seriously, who is the target customer for this merchandise?

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Thanks for stopping by, enjoy your week!

A List of Things

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Hi Guys. It has taken about 3 weeks to get over The Plague. I did most things that people suggested in an effort to reduce my misery including but not limited to; Emergent-C, a T of honey and a T of apple cider vinegar, TRULY HEINOUS!!!! Folks kept telling me I needed a Hot Toddy, and they had old family recipes, certain liquors and other ingredients they thought worked best. It said online that whiskey was the best thing to help you sleep, so SIGN ME UP.

Honey graciously brought me this. Maybe as an homage to his Canadian roots. Fun Fact: when we lived in Windsor, Ontario, we regularly passed by the place that made this! All I have to say is I will never be an alcoholic. I had to drink that Hot Toddy holding my nose. I did sleep a wee bit better that night. The next night I decided to not prolong my misery of drinking an entire mug of nasty, I just drank the 2 ounces as a shot. The Ab-Cat said she had to see this and proceeded to laugh when I held my nose and threw it back, because I was gagging!

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I just put the bottle in the cupboard above the fridge and called the experiment a dismal failure. But in other news, Honey has contracted some other kind of plague and he had his own Toddy this morning. There was no unpleasant gagging I’m happy to report.

In other news!

THIS is happening!!!! We have lived in our home about 18 years and there has always been an empty field behind us. Our builder told us that a church owned the property, but other than a once a month appointment with a giant machine to cut the grass/weeds, there was never any activity back there. The only time I ever went back there was to stealthily scatter leaves, weeds and other garden debris that caused the bush hog guy no trouble, So basically the point behind our house was a compost area.

We started hearing rumors that the church wanted to sell the property. This caused us mild concern, only because we did not fancy a gas station or something like that back there. We soon heard that another church bought the land, and I actually knew some people who went to that church! My good friend CMB’s parents are in attendance as is the mother of my old friend Suzanne Suzanna Danna, along with others from the church where we all grew up.

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There were starts and delays, rumors of trouble with the city and the county, a sign was posted and then one day there was a fence around the entire property! Then the heavy equipment moved in and now we have a HUGE hole on the other side of our hedge! Since we are getting the retention pond back there, we can only assume that has something to do with the digging.They have been struggling with a lot of rain, so work has been in fits and starts

I don’t know that you can tell, but it’s about a 15 foot hole back there! Honey has been using the noise machine when he sleeps because they are Johnny on the spot at 7 in the morning and don’t knock off until 6. They have holes to dig and dirt to move and as of one day last week, cables to cut!!!!

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We noticed our internet was out, but it is not unheard of to have occasional interruptions over here. When it continued and we did a little investigation, we discovered we had no TV or landline. That seemed fishy. After a conversation with Wowway, it was determined that we, and our neighbor to the south, had no service. They did not call to report it because they conveniently do not live there anymore. The nice Wow guy came out and ran a temporary line until they could bury a line and we were happy to welcome the distraction of cable back into our lives.

This is probably around the time the line was cut, they are mighty close to our box.

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One whole day without internet, tv and phone and I have to say this is how we felt. Thanks Oklahoma Tammy, very timely I must say!!!!!

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Because of Thanksgiving, our BSF class moved to Monday, with an abbreviated leaders meeting earlier than usual and then class right after. It’s a full day, but it works for us. I have been participating in the 7 day, black and white challenge on Instagram, no words, no people and no explanation. This was one of my offerings. As BSFfers, we are known for our ability to make very nice circles. I’m pretty sure it might say that in the Bible. “They were known for their love, and ability to make a great circle”. Or something like that. 😉 Miss May’s circle in the sanctuary.IMG-6079

When the weather turns, this young catten gets very cuddly and needy. He just needs to be touching you. We don’t mind. It’s just a good thing he is so sweet, because he is about 50% trouble. Some days 75.

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Because of the holiday, schedules are all joophered up, in a good way! Plus we are not hosting Thanksgiving, we’re OFF!!!! Therefore, I have a little more time to blob!!!! Planning to be back tomorrow with The Hodgepodge.

Rescued Treasure

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I believe I have mentioned that the neighborhood I walk in with Keelody and Jip the Farm Dog are some of the the most wasteful streets I have ever experienced! Those people apparently just cannot be bothered to take anything to the Salvation Army, so they throw out perfectly good stuff that would be sorely appreciated by others less fortunate. And before you say “oh, they probably put it out so others can take it”, well, bless your heart for being so kind, that is not the case. I have taken 7-10 bikes, unused baby crib bumper pads, a vast amount of cardboard building blocks, multiple strollers, book shelves, and Keelyody found some great bar stools, all rescued hours-minutes before the garbage truck claimed them. These things are in NO WAY garbage, but barely used. I take the majority of the findings to the Community Closet at the church where I attend BSF, they have a wonderful ministry that provides clothing and other needs to their surrounding neighborhoods. I have kept a few things and pressed them back into useful service.

When I first started noticing all the bikes, I called the church secretary and asked if they would be interested in that sort of thing, she said YES, and they even had a church member who could fix them up if they needed a little attention. The last few weeks have yielded 2 bed rails, the slide under the mattress kind that keep your toddler from rolling out of their new big kid bed, a trail bike that Honey said was a GREAT bike, and a toddler tricycle. All hopefully living to see another chapter of usefullness.

I found this stash last month in a box that said FREE BOOKS. I put them in these bags that I had in the car for groceries because I could not even lift the heavy box!!! Let me tell you, the children in that house were NOT readers! Barely any looked like the pages had even been turned! There were quite a few duplicates of Magic Tree House books and all things dinosaur, a whole bag of board books for toddlers, hard covers, soft covers, many were popular when our kids were young and some were classics. Who would throw out a perfectly good, unused Good Night Moon???!!! There was even a children’s picture dictionary in French. I am going to pass that one along to my Aunt Phyllis because she is French in her heart and she can teach her grandbaby to share her passion.

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Since I already have a library of all sorts of books that I kept from our kids, I encouraged Mousey to go through them to see if she wanted any for her someday beebee’s. I will let The Boy and The Dane go through them for Moonpie when they come to visit next month. The remaining can either go to elementary school with The Ab-Cat, all the classrooms have their own little libraries and she knew quite a few of the titles from there, or the rest can find new homes with the Community Closet at Crosspointe Church.

I considered it a major SCORE and I am thankful the books did not end up in a one way trip to the landfill. Books are FUNdamental!!! Some of my fondest memories are of reading to our children.