Rain clouds

Clouds to the south over the trees.

Looking north

I took these pictures a few days ago, but the sky isn’t much different tonight. I went to check the garden (found a cucumber) and James went to dump the kitchen compost container, and we both barely made it into the house before the rain began to smatter against the windows. It was not much rain this evening, but enough to keep the pool closed. Paulina will not be getting much of a final check at this rate. Either no children come, or the weather sets in and they have to leave after an hour or two this whole week. It sounds like next week will pretty much be the end because the other guards are leaving to return to school, and they really have not had anyone there. It was plenty hot and busy in June, so I guess that is just how this summer is going.

It is good that we are getting this rain now, at least some of the crops will be salvaged, and perhaps there will be a little moisture going into the ground for hope of something better next spring. James talked to his brothers and it sounds like the row crops will be a little less than a great crop, but at least it is better than if the heat would have continues. Also, I am hopeful that this means the pastures will be ok. Half of what we own is pasture land, and I am always concerned for how that holds up.

James and I were in Bismarck today to pick up my aunt from the airport as she came back from Phoenix. She had been there since the middle of July or so. It was just a little less than a month, and I think time for her to get home. Ha!! I don’t know how many times this past week, I wanted to pick up the phone and ask her to come over for coffee or just sit on the porch, and then I remembered she wasn’t here yet.

One of the best things about the trip to Bismarck was that we really didn’t have much time to shop, so it was plan what we needed and get to it. I liked the idea because not buying is my new best way to eliminate clutter. We did purchase a few needed items, and then we browsed the canning area where I picked up some lids and both powdered and liquid pectin for making jelly. I need to get at those choke cherries tomorrow afternoon, no excuses. I also bought a larger embroidery hoop to do those towels that I stamped yesterday. I put a new bulb in the light beside my rocking chair, now I have no excuse for not doing those towels as I watch television at night. Hmmmm.

I learned that I won’t need to start my long-term substitute job on the first day of school because they are going to have the students stay with the regular classroom teachers on the first week until they get the schedules all in place. I will be starting on the last Monday in August and stay until the teacher is back. Ya!! I enjoy that room and am looking forward to being there. I know most of the students and the other teachers, and it is one of those really small schools that just feels like home.

Well, enough for tonight. I am supposed to be finishing my message, and I just can’t get to it even though I pretty well know what I want to say. These are the times, I would love to use note cards and a few key words and just talk. I am always afraid to do that because I might never get to the point and end it. I already carry on too long for some people in the audience (mostly family, Ha ha!!). Catch you later.

Sorting, washing, organizing…

We spent today sorting many of the boxes that we dug out of the closet and up from the basement. We also dug out more boxes from almost every corner of the house. Sadly we didn’t completely clean any of those corners. I keep hoping for some time yet this summer and into the fall. At least the closet looks better, and it feels so much bigger. James and I sort of agree that it is because of all those craft boxes that have been removed, and also because of the new shoe shelf, which allowed for us to toss out that ugly broken shoe stand. Yipee, it was nothing by a pain that I tripped over and it scratched up the floor.

Sweatshirts drying on the line.

So, the bedroom looked pretty cluttered yet last night. We drug most of the boxes of clothes downstairs, and I am about 3/4 of the way through washing everything. Most of it will end up on the rummage sale. I have picked a few things to put away for another day, about four items to keep, and an arm load of old t-shirt material items to add to the stack slated to be cut into t-shirt yarn for to crochet rugs. I also have a pile of jeans to be cut into quilt squares. Like I said, I am hoping to get to some of these projects this fall. If I have to do it in the evenings, I am thinking that I will need to invest in a decent light.

The best part of it all is that I was able to find homes for the sheets in the towel closets in the two bathrooms upstairs. We also fit the boxes of pictures into the computer room for now, and James went through a box of old pay stubs and bills, and was able to toss everything except one envelope of information about the concrete in front of our house. He put that in with files of other house upgrades. I also threw away some boxes, but still need to figure out how to let go of those balloons. I mean really, I think I have every myelin balloon that was ever given to anyone in this family. In 35 years, that is a lot of balloons.

Our real goal this summer was to get the basement emptied of some of the junk there, so we can actually use it as livable space. As it was we took about five boxes up stairs from there. Paulina went through her suitcase of Bratz dolls and a couple of other containers and organized things better. I think there was even some garbage generated in the sorting. In going through containers, she found some of the pieces for certain of her dolls, so they can now be stored away for when she ever has her own place.

Workbench that may become a plant holder, or a seat, not sure yet.

She has identified a few of the old pieces of furniture that she is willing to take to college. She and her friend, Katie, will be living in a campus apartment this year, and so they have room and need for more than just their clothes. They won’t need a fridge, but I can send some dishes and baking supplies, which should help clear out some of the kitchen areas, too. Yaaaa!!! All these things go with the idea that they are not to come back. Haha, as if that idea has worked well in the past. I also identified a few pieces that I would like to see removed from the house and not brought back inside. One of them ended up on the porch for now, not sure if it is going up for sale in the near future, or just staying outside.

Plant mess

Last evening as we were working in the house there was a short rainstorm outside. When the wind came up, we just ignored it, which is not something we ever do. When I went downstairs to put a box on the dining room table, I peeked out to the porch from the living room and found a slight disaster. The plants that had been sitting on the ledge and the little table were on the floor and some of them were completely out of their pots. I did the best I could to stand them up and put them back together, but I am afraid the little aloe vera plants will not survive.

Tent is doing well!

After my fiasco with the plants,  I was soaked and needed to change. By that time James realized the wind had picked up, and he ran out to see if the tent needed to be taken down, then he was soaked. He had put it up in the morning to see if it was still usable. We have had that thing since 1992 when we were chaperons for the Senior Class trip that was a canoe/camping trip in Minnesota. That was the only time we ever went camping away from home. The only other times we used that tent was with track meets. It was along at the 1997 State Meet in Minot and Jessica, Victoria, Paulina and Sarah Wiley stayed in there through the whole meet. We were really afraid that Paulina would try to get out and run around (she was only 2) but they must have had enough toys along to keep themselves occupied. It was great.

Well, James decided not to chance taking it down during the storm thinking it would do more harm than good. This morning when he went out to check on it, there were only a few damp spots in it. Apparently all the years packed away in the basement have not done it any harm. Hope the kids have fun playing in it this weekend. James is thinking that Jaxon might enjoy camping out with grandpa on Friday night. We shall see how long that lasts. I wonder how high they would jump if someone snuck outside and tried to scare them????

 

Foggy day, foggy sinuses

Well Monday isn’t much better in terms of the sinus/sore throat/can’t breathe situation. I woke this morning worse than Saturday, or so I felt. I was up yesterday at 5 a.m. and never did sleep until after midnight. I have been miserable since the last of the pills wore off on Saturday. I am hoping to get some today. I tried at the local pharmacy place, but not the kind I like to use and I am too stubborn to try something different.

This morning the sun was shining and the sunrise was actually fairly pretty, but when I looked outside at 9 a.m. I was shocked at what I saw. A massive fog had moved in and it was really thick, but so bright that it hurt your eyes to look at it. Actually today everything hurts my eyes, they don’t stop watering. It feels like the mucus is so tight behind my eyes that they are nearly popping out. I know this is really an appetizing and wonderful blog to read, NOT!!

I was planning to skip out on track practice today, but I am thinking if we are outside, I probably can’t germ up anyone. I am also supposed to sub tomorrow for the computer teacher, so I will try to pull it together to fulfill that obligation. I am really hoping to get a few more sub dates this spring to help reload the savings account since I found out what the synod trip is going to set us back, yikes. We will probably be doing one of those credit card roll over things which is so not advised by the money experts, but sometimes you do what you must. I just know there won’t be any crazy purchases or wild trips in our lives after this.

Enough of this wailing and gnashing of teeth. I better take a hot shower and head north. Maybe I can catch a nap in the van before practice. Sitting up seems to be the only way I can sleep. No just to make sure that I wait until the van is parked before I take the snooze. Catch you later. O, by the way the sunrise picture at the top is from a couple of weeks ago, but it was nearly that pretty early this morning, too.

Back to winter, again

Gift from Paulina

What a weekend! We thought that we would be spending time at home getting some things accomplished, maybe getting to the message for church a little early, and instead we got a phone call on Friday night asking us to please come and get Paulina from the airport in Bismarck. Apparently when they went to the airport, they were crowded and no one figured on her coming back with them. They also had some sort of glitch in Orlando and ended up in the airport over night instead of staying in a motel nearby. What a thing to be in a strange place, tired and have all your luggage and not being able to sleep because you were not sure what was going to happen. It sounds a bit to me like there needs to be a leadership change in the group in terms of the adult advising it. The only thing that I could tell Paulina is those going into teaching received a hands on education of why the adult needs to be mature and they know more about how to treat students in their care. End of that lecture. She brought us this little Minnie Mouse ball to put on our van antenna. I put it on the crochet hook because I don’t want it to blow away or be faded by the sun or ruined by the snow or rain. Roger thought it would be a great toy, so I have to keep it away from her too.

The shop this evening

At any rate there was a storm coming into the area yesterday and today, and so we were a bit leery about getting on the road. We made it to Bismarck fine and by the time we picked up Paulina and Katie, the snow had let up. Jessica left Jamestown as we were leaving McDonald’s and we met at the truck stop in Steele. It was really nice of her to brave the elements for a sister and friend. Paulina hopped in the driver seat and Jessica curled up in the back to sleep on the way back to Jamestown. Today Jess said she could feel the babies drop. I sure hope they hang on for their duration to grow and develop as needed before they come out to meet this cold world.

In between inside and outside door.

Well, this morning was even worse in terms of weather. It did not snow much overnight. I would know because I wasn’t finished with the message for today and pulled one of those write until I can’t hold my eyes open, sleep for an hour or two then wake up and write some more than sleep, and that is how I made it to 7:30 a.m. and was about to do the last half a page and the prayer when James looked out the window and said it was time to call for a road report. A dial to 511 and a text to one of the farmers, and we had determined there was no travel advised in our area and so the phone tree was enacted to call off church. What a deal. The rest of the day was spent watching Hallmark movies, taking cat pictures and alternating between knitting and crocheting and eating.

Roger

I also had a hard time keeping Roger off my lap. She is really having a hard time staying warm as of late. I think maybe it isn’t so good for her to be in Sophia’s special thyroid food so much. [Evidence is in this picture. I am finding her sitting on the heater vents quite often.] I will have to make sure she eats more of her own food. Speaking of food, I am currently so stuffed with taco soup that I can barely sit, but it was really good. I guess I will go back to the chair by the TV and work on the afghan some more.

Still winter here

This morning

This was the view from our van this morning as I joined James in heading to school. I had agreed to substitute for the elementary special education teacher today, so we were off early. It is still snowing and more is expected over night. Ah such fun.

Leaving …

The shop

The shop

Today we are leaving on the trip to Tenn. to watch Paulina participate in the NAIA National Indoor Championships for Track and Field. She always says it should be Field and Track. HA! This will be our first trip on a plane since we went to D.C. back in, well I can’t remember. It was to visit Jessica who was an intern for Senator Conrad of ND. Bush Jr. was in the White House, which we didn’t get to tour or even drive by. Means we need to go back, maybe when Oprah is there. Ha!!

 

Back steps

Back steps

Today James is about going out of his mind because we had a bit of snow over night. Pictures to the side. Roger was not too pleased when we were packing. She kept putting a toy into the carry on and this morning she laid on the big suitcase. I think she would sneak along if she could. They have both been so needy since we returned from the wedding, this trip will likely send them for a spiral. I am just so relieved we are at home the following week without even a day trip. Hurrah. Wait, we will have to go to a grocery store someplace, we don’t even have bread in the house, but that is ok, nothing will spoil while we are gone. So, I have my iPad with and hopefully can drop a post in before we return. Happy March to you all.

What an Awesome day!!

Sunrise Feb. 21, 2017

Sunrise Feb. 21, 2017

Today was an absolutely beautiful day for February 21 in the northern edge of South Dakota. I woke around 5 a.m. as usual let the cat in the bathroom to eat then went back to bed and turned on the local news station. The television had been on the I Love Lucy show and was she at her best today. The tore up a banner to crawl off a balcony that she had been trapped on because she was trying to get a look at some celebrity. Wild antics that is for sure. Anyway, not the point of the post. I fell back asleep and woke to my phone going off, one of the schools needed a substitute. Hmmm. I had already missed the ride so I said no. When I called James to ask where he was, he was close enough to come back, but when I called the lady back, she already had someone. Hurrah! So, that was that and time to get up and get to work.

Sophia relaxing

Sophia relaxing

Roger on the deck

Roger on the deck

I started the day by putting on some sweats and slipping into some shoes and grabbing the camera. Wow was the sunrise pretty. The first pictures I took were without the card in the camera, so run to the computer, get the card and start over. I don’t think I missed much. I never checked the high temperature today, but it was pretty nice. I hung some clothes on the line and let the cats outside off and on. They were so happy to lay in the grass and run around that I had a time getting them back into the house. I even turned off the furnace and opened some of the window. Perhaps the most of what I did today was to eliminate some of those pesky spotted flies that we call Attic flies. What a pain they are. They only come out in the winter when the heat is on. I think it will be mandatory to spray the attic next year like we did two years ago.

Mostly I was happy that I feel much better today. I could barely walk on Sunday afternoon after I tried to lift the laundry basket out of its hamper area. My knee was bad enough from this weekend and my back wasn’t great, but that twisting lift did me in. I got to the chiropractor as quickly as I could on Monday, and it was even better than I had hoped. Somehow she gets me randomly talking and I mentioned that my stomach is bothering me and that I have so much pressure under my ribs. Short version is that after checking a few things she gave me an idea of what it is and suggested probiotics for now. I may after the wedding and the trip to Tennessee go and check it out further, but for now, I have hope that I will be feeling better and that it isn’t some major thing that needs surgery. Yipee!!

img_9011I ended up doing all the laundry including my church robe and I even hung out James’ new suit pants. They have a crease in them from the hanger and the plan was that with the snow melting below them the humidity would ease out some of the creases. Not so much, so I will be doing a bit of ironing on Wednesday before everything gets packed. Thursday we are heading north to Jamestown and about 7 p.m. that night we will have rehearsal then at 6 p.m. on Friday Jessica is getting married to Tony. First off, I can’t believe that I am old enough to be married and have children and now the second one is getting married. How old do they want to make me? OK, so you are as young as you feel? Ha!!

I also, the time between laundry loads, did some reading of background information for the scriptures this weekend, yes I am doing the service, and it is scary, but it will be fun scary and a bit more exciting than having to console a family at a funeral, but scary in the sense that it is an unknown sort of thing, and well, I guess that means doing a little more research and a little more digging so that I know what I am talking about and what I am doing. (The run on sentence was for the scary effect, Ha!) If any one hears me rehearsing they will think I am crazy, but then I won’t feel like a fool when I am reading away and wondering if I am doing it right. Of course we will work out any of those kinks on Thursday night so no big deal. It might be fun to have a more front row view than a person normally gets at a wedding.

I remember our wedding, being a total wreck up until the day, and then I was a fitzer during the pictures, but after walking down the aisle and getting to the front of the church what I remember most is hanging on to James because he was shaking like a leaf. Pretty much I spent most of the ceremony trying to hold him up and keep him calm; it was crazy. Wonder which one of these two will be shaking and which one will be holding?

Oh yes, besides the reading and the laundry, I did a few items of clutter cleaning today. It is starting to feel like we are getting one or two corners available for use around here. There really isn’t a dent in the basement, but there is just a good feeling around the edges. I will post more details later. It is so exciting that I have three  large boxes on the counter that are being filled for the wedding, and for the baby shower the next day. (Of course in our family we never do one thing at a time, but this makes really good sense in terms of traveling time.) I am hoping to leave two boxes behind with most of the items inside. There are one or two things and the third box that I do want back, but I am happy to know that some things are leaving this house never to return. YAYAYA!!

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