Saturday, November 23, 2019

Baby In A Bowl

 Corey sends us pictures of my little great grandson Corey Jr almost everyday.  They are rarely posed pictures, but pictures taken of the baby's every day life.  Here is one of the exceptions that is clearly a posed picture and one of my favorite pictures so far.

Corey Jr is 10 months old, very tall and thin.  Just like his father was when he was this age. His length and weight when he was born were about the same as his father's so I suspect he will be a long legged thin and tall man when he grows up.  Corey and Corey Jr spend a lot of time together which makes my heart happy.  But then I knew he would be a great dad.

It appears that if all goes well, we will be seeing our baby in person soon.
I'm pretty sure I have mentioned that Nic and Corey Jr are going to have a new baby in the family along about March.  This time we get a little girl!

When Terry was in the hospital, I started to crochet a small afghan with variegated yarn that I had in my stash. Simple stitches with no real pattern and a little shell border finish.  I tried to take a picture of the entire afghan, but the picture turned out so bad.  All those little stitched colors looked like a pixel blur so I took a close up picture of it folded and it shows up a little better.   I will be gifting it to Alyssa for the new baby.

Next I'll be working on finishing Nic's Super Hero quilt.  I just got little Corey's quilt (remember the sharks) bound and washed.  I am just so happy how it turned out and am really proud of myself.  It's really my second quilt.  This is such a learning experience!

Grateful:  Recently my focus on what I am grateful for is doctors.  Terry had his follow up visit with the cardiologist that saw him in the hospital.  We have a total understanding of what Afib is made clear to us by his VA doc, our family doc and his Cardio doc.  Now the Cardio doc has thoroughly explained what Terry's options for treatment are.  Terry's brother has the same condition and has undergone all the procedures to correct it.  They didn't work for him.  Additional medication is not an option due to the RA meds Terry takes and his Kidney condition.  We both agreed not to opt for the surgery which if it works might relieve Terry's fatigue and shortness of breath.  But it probably won't because those two conditions are also caused by Terry's other illnesses.  As long as he remains on the meds the doc prescribed when he left the hospital he should be fine.

So.  there you go.  Our life in a nutshell.  My plans for the next month are to sew and later bake.  Christmas is only a month away!!  If you feel like it, please share one of your favorite Christmas Dinner recipes on your own blog.    I think my next blog post will include mine.

Happy Thanksgiving

Friday, November 8, 2019

I bought a new fall jacket recently.  It's kind of a strange color.  Kohl's calls it burgundy, but there is not one accessory that I could find that has this color in it.

This post is not about the jacket, but the bag I made to go with it.  I love purses.  I love to make purses. I like a bag to coordinate with my coat, jacket or clothes I am wearing. Long ago, I used to sew every purse or tote I carried.  When I worked,  I got away from that, but I am back to it and this is the first of what is to come.

This fabric is a heavy upholstery fabric that I didn't think would be too easy to add zippers to.  I didn't want a front pocket to take away from the fabric design.  I did put a couple of pockets in the lining. There are a couple of tabs inside with a ring so I can clip my keys inside.  I also keep my wallet on a chain attached to a ring inside so it is never loose in my bag.  I left it once on a counter in Walgreens free for the person behind me in line to take it, remove the $$ then call me to tell me they found it, but that is a whole other story to tell.   I didn't use a pattern for this purse.  I just measured fabric and cut.

I usually have things in my purse that I don't even LOOK at.  When I worked, I needed to carry a lot of things just in case I needed them.  I always leaned toward using one of those organizer bags with a pocket for everything.  Now I am constantly going though the pockets looking for whatever I am looking for.  So now, I'm over that.  I have decided that what I want is just a plain purse design.  I'm pretty sure I'm going to either make or buy one of those purse organizers that can be easily moved from one purse to another.  I have a pattern, and have added one to my Amazon Wish List because really, it's pretty cheap so I may get it to see if I like the idea.  If I am going to sew,  I don't want sew something that I can buy for $6 on Amazon.

Grateful:  Today I am grateful for electricity.  Winter cold is moving in and our home is heated with electric heat.

Do you carry a purse?  If so, what design to you prefer.  If you sew yours, feel free to mention a pattern you like.

xx, Carol

Friday, November 1, 2019

Dreams - Endeavourers Reveal

When the Endeavourers November 2019 was announced I didn't have to think about the theme for very long before what I knew how I would approach it.  I am NOT a dreamer.  A sad statement from me I guess.  Maybe not.

Terry's health and my own Carpal Tunnel recovery limited how elaborate I would make this piece.

I had a sad childhood as I was raised by an aunt and uncle who I considered to be my mom and dad. The situation that brought me to them was difficult for my mom as she was probably suffering through menopause.  At least that is what I choose to believe.  My dad worked in the steel mills for US Steel so they were doing pretty well financially and my father never  made me feel as if living with them was a hardship for them and he totally treated me as he did his own children.  Not so much my mom.  I was always grateful that they "took me in".  One thing my mother always said to me if I asked for her to buy something for me, even if it was something I actually did need..."money does not grow on trees".  When I was little, I had many dreams of a money tree growing in the back yard.  I can't remember any other dream from my childhood.

The pieces I stitch for the The Endeavourers Challenge and the pieces I did for the Bead Journal Project are always about me.  The Endeavourers has encouraged me to try some new technique that I have never done before. The leaves on the money tree have been fused to the piece  then stitched around the edges with black thread. You see this technique used a lot and I admit that I have never liked it much.  It goes against my A-type personality to leave the edges raw. Having done it, I admit that I liked DOING it.  I wanted to have a little girl catching 'leaves' in a basket but I just didn't get to that part.  I did quilt in the background. I have always admired those that FMQ.  I have also felt that I would never do it.  My mind has changed on that and I definitely will give it a try.

Grateful:  I am grateful that I am a member of this group.  Even though my pieces are not as elaborate as other's in the group, they do encourage me to extend my quilting/stitching abilities.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

In Limbo

This looks a lot worse by camera than it does in reality.  The doc told me he would make an inch incision for Carpal Tunnel surgery.  When I took the bandages off I felt sure this was 3 inches.  I measured it and it's 1-1/4.  It certainly has messed up my Life Line, lol.

So, it was a good thing to do.  I no longer have numbness in my hand.  The incision is healing nicely.  The doctor has not released me yet.  The next appointment is around November 20.  If you have this surgery, obey the doctor's advice of No Pulling, No Pushing, and No Twisting. Pushing for me included shopping carts at the grocery store, which I didn't realize at the time and paid for by wearing a brace for a day.

Before I had the surgery, I stitched and sandwiched a quilt for Corey Jr. and one for Nic. This is the top fabric for Corey Jr's.  I did get it quilted in straight lines.  Nic's is blocks of Marvel Comics.  I only have Nic's flimsy done.  Both are sandwiched with flannel for the batting since they live in Downtown LA. 
This is the backing. It kind of makes the quilt reversible.


While waiting for my hand to heal a little more, I dug around in my stash for upholstery fabric that I could use to stitch a new purse/bag. I wanted something that would go with a new fall jacket I bought.  In reality, it will probably be too cold to use it before I get it done.

I'm not using a pattern.  Just a simple tote.  I'm going to learn how to add a center pocket divider and a recessed zipper closing.  It should be pretty easy, but I just need the quiet time to think about how to do it using suggestions from Utube tutorials.
October is a busy month for us.  Terry has 6 doctors and sees each quarterly and October is the month.  Add lab work and x-rays and that pretty much fills up our days.

Grateful:  I still find something to be grateful for everyday.  Today I thought a moment about some things that make my day better.  The top of the list right now is NO DRAMA.  Life has been serene and I'll try to keep it that way if possible.  I usually begin to be a bit depressed during the holidays so I will attempt to ward it off.

Tell me, are you stitching for the holidays yet.  How soon do you start to make holiday plans?
xx, Carol

Monday, September 23, 2019

To Jump to Win 10 or Not

I am open to any advice you might have regarding switching to Win 10.  Well, not really switching.

Before I retired I bought a new computer.  Win 10 had just come out and the business owner switched the operating system on all computers. (His son had a degree in "computers" so it was a no brainer for him).  I, however, had a really hard time adjusting.  That was back in 2013.  I didn't even have a smart phone yet, let alone understand how apps worked.  When Microsoft no longer supported the version of Windows I had on my home computer, I bought a Win 7 OS.  Windows back then assured us they would support it into the early 2020s. 

But here it is the end of 2019 and Microsoft says no support for Win 7 after mid January 2020.  So, I jumped in and bought a new tower. (I had bought Terry a Win 10 laptop a few years ago and just did not want to do all I do on line on a laptop.)  I get some kind of comfort visiting the web from my desktop on the desk in my sewing room.

So Windows told me to transfer all of the files I want to save to Drive One.  I pretty much did that, but just in case I also put them on my external hard drive.  My new computer was sitting there on the floor of my room...still in the box.  Sunday Terry was having a difficult day and slept most of the day so I thought this is a perfect time to hook up that new tower.  After disconnecting everything and switching it all to the new tower....what the heck.  The new one had no connection for a VGA plug.  Now what do I do?  I don't want to buy a new monitor.  Mine is a 22" and I LOVE it.  Finding a phone number for Microsoft was the next step.  Such a great guy told me I just needed an adapter.  OK, I love this guy.  He gave me the number of where to call on Monday when the HP store was open.  In the mean time I hooked my old tower back up and looked on line for an adapter....OMGosh how do you know what to buy?  So Monday I called the HP Store, got a part number and hopefully it is on it's way to me as I type.

So, if you have switched to WIN 10 and have a story to tell or a warning, PLEASE let me know so I will know what to watch out for.

Grateful:  Today I am grateful for Ibuprofen.
My Carpal Tunnel surgery was rescheduled to this coming Thursday.  I was told before the first scheduled day that I should discontinue taking Advil 10 days before surgery.  I did not realize what a great anti-inflammatory Advil IS.  I am feeling more aches and pains than I knew I had.  Tylenol is not reaching them.

xx, Carol 

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Terry went to have his cataract removed.  He was all ready and prepped to go when they called it quits and said he must go to the ER because his heart was in Atrial fibrillation. That was Tuesday.  He was hospitalized from Tuesday to Friday while the cardiologist tried to get his heart beat no normal or at the very least in the 90s.   But they sent him home with 3 new prescriptions and we have added another doctor to Terry's list of docs that care for one health issue or another.

An easy explanation for the condition is that your heart makes too many electric shocks.  The worry is that blood pools in the lower part of the heart which can lead to a clot and stroke. Apparently this must have been occurring intermittently since with all the doc appointments he has, no one has ever mentioned it. Now it is a permanent condition.

Terry has too many electric shocks occurring in his heart.  The day I brought him home, my car decided that it will not doing whatever it does electrically so I guess it will go in the shop. BUT, that can't occur for a few days because I have been called to jury duty.  I'll have to take a spare battery and a portable starter in my car so I don't get stranded.  I could ask for a deferment but our calendar is so full of medical appointments coming up I just figure to get it over with.

The cardio doc said Terry could have had the eye surgery, but the eye guy says he'll reschedule when the cardio doc gives Terry a release which will happen when he sees him again in November.

My best and favorite sewing machine is at the Sewing Machine Doctor.  It's been there 3 weeks now and I haven't had the energy to call to find out when it will be done.  Might as well stay there while I dole out money to fix the car.  In the meantime I have a little Brother machine that stitches well, but honestly sewing has been put aside for probably another week.

Harley (Terry's dog) was so NICE to me when Terry was away.  AND he lost weight which proves what I have been telling Terry....he gives the dogs too many treats and people food!!

I took yarn with me to the hospital so I have interest in using yarn I have accumulated and so far it has helped me in trying to break a habit of playing a game at night on my tablet.  I have been trying to spend less time playing and I'm pretty sure I am transferring my interest to crochet.  This makes me so happy!!

Another weird thing happened, but not weird in the way I recently posted about, with our trash can.  I heard the truck stop in front of my house, but when I went out to bring t back up to the house it was NO WHERE to be found.  I called the service to bring another can.  I asked if there was a way the can could have dropped into the truck when the operator dumped it.  The girl told me she had worked there a long time and never heard of it happening before.  If the can was stolen I would have to pay $50 to get a new one, but she waived the charge just in case it DID fall into the truck.

Grateful:  I am grateful I have Terry home.  I got a taste of what it would be like without him and I didn't like it...not one little bit.

How was YOUR week?   Did you do anything fun?
BTW, I read all of your posts while I was sitting with Terry, but no commenting  because my phone is a PITA.  I don't know how people do all their internet business using a phone.
xx, Carol

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Strange Happenings

I am writing this post really to document happenings in my house over the last year or so.  Previously I posted about other weird occurrences but these things are happening more and more frequently.

Terry has felt someone poke him while he is sleeping.  Ok.  That's probably a dream that feels real.  But it happens pretty often.  He hears me call his name when I didn't.  Come on..he doesn't even hear me when I DO call his name, lol.

But these occurrences that have been happening are out of the ordinary. 

I have a 6'x 9' rolled carpet that has been leaning against a corner of the dining room waiting for me to wash the hard wood floor before I lay it down. It really is leaning in a corner against the corner.  Yet it fell in the opposite direction onto the floor.  Not sideways but flat out in the opposite direction.

Then there was the smell of cigarette smoke in the living room.  All the doors and windows were closed.  It was NOT the smell of wood burning, but a cigarette.

And the night I woke up smelling my SIL's perfume in the bedroom.

There is a shelf in the back hall next to the extra refrigerator about shoulder level.  There has been a box about 9 x 9 x 9 sitting on that shelf for years. So long that I had forgotten it. Out of the clear blue it fell off the shelf.  We heard it fall, and checking it out there was absolutely no reason for it to fall.

We hear something fall in the garage...we find nothing out of place.

We hear the garage door's closed.

This morning the MOST unexplained thing happened.  I had collected a bag of sweat shirts to give to my daughter.  I put them in a white 13 gallon trash bag and tied a knot in the bag and placed it on the floor of my sewing room.  I put them there where the would be out of the way because I had more to give her.  I saw them there, in the bag when I turned out the light last night before I went to bed.  This morning when I got up, the sweat shirts were on the floor in a stack and the bag was no where to be found!.  Not the bag.  Not a piece of the bag anywhere. How does that happen?  HOW DOES THAT HAPPEN??? 

 Does stuff like this happen at YOUR house?  I'm really open to the Supernatural.  Stuff falling or sounds in the night...ok.  Sometimes things disappear and show up later.  But this bag thing is TOO weird. 

Saturday, August 24, 2019

I HAVE Been Busy

This is the quilt top I have been working on.  The focal blocks in the center are various Marvel Comic fabrics.  My great grandson Nic is all into Spiderman right now so I think he will really love it.  I have a blog friend Mary who make a LOT of quilts and generously shares  instructions for them on her blog.  This quilt is Happy Blocks.  When I finish it, I'll be making a quilt for Nic's little brother Corey Jr. using another of Mary's quilts Quickie Strippie.

Guess what?  Nic and Corey Jr. are going to have a little brother or sister next Spring.  I was sure surprised by THAT news but everyone is really happy about the news.  We asked Nic what he was going to do having TWO babies to look out for.  He told me he has two hands.  My heart just bursts with love for Corey and his growing family.

I have pretty much given up on the landscaping around the pond.  The weeds are pretty much under control as I weed a little each day if I see them popping up through the new mulch.  We still work to control the algae in the pond.  I added 3 dozen Japanese Snails and not one has died so I guess they are feasting in the deep end.  I also have 6 baby frogs that seem to be happy.  However, only one of them is an adult.  Frogs seem to come and go each year, especially when we have days of rainy weather.

My crows are still coming to visit every day, however, the 3 have become 7 and are now two families.

Terry and I have had a lot of doctor stuff going on.  Nothing serious, but in September Terry will have a cataract removed and I will have carpal tunnel surgery on my left hand.

Grateful:  Today I am thankful for Benedryl.  I am having a bout of eczema on my right thumb.  Benedryl will take it away if I remember to take it regularly.  Also, I have bee stings from a bee that was angry that I opened the outdoor trash can.  I think it was a wasp.

Wishing everyone a great coming Labor Day weekend.  Tell me if you have any plans for next weekend.
xx, Carol

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

48 Years - I Love That He Loves His Dog!

When you have been together this many years, much of your anniversary and the days leading up to it might be spent thinking about things that have happened in the past.  I am reminded how jealous my MIL was of the dogs my FIL loved over the years.  So much so that she actually over the years took two of them to the the Humane Society while he was at work.

I took this picture of Terry with his little dog Harley.  It brings me a lot of joy to see it.  A big man with a heart like a marshmallow...just like his father..who loves his dog and calls him Honey.  It melts my heart. I am happy to know that he has the same kind of love for Harley that I have know for several of the dog friends we have had.

We have two other dogs that he also loves and treats with affection.

Happy Anniversary Terry.  I love you more every day.

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Endeavourer Challenge - A Walk In The Park

This is the project that I mentioned a week or so ago that Harley the Devil Dog destroyed.  Luckily I hadn't done any of the hand stitching on that piece or I would have been REALLY mad, even though Harley has the sweetest face ever.

The theme for this quarter is: A Walk In The Park.  I knew right away that I would try again to create a piece in a landscape.  I want to achieve a nitch in landscape work, but don't want to devote all my stitching time to the style.

The piece is not exactly an Art Quilt.  I also knew when I thought about how I would approach the subject that I wanted it to embellish the back of a jacket I have.  I have given some thought to embellishing the front of the jacket on the lapels and pockets.  It's still in the "thinking about it" stage.

During this project I obtained a couple of books on Landscape Quilts looking for a technique that I want to pursue.  I am leaning toward trying the technique taught by Wendy Butler Berns as explained in her book Photo Album Quilts.

I drew the design, pieced fabric to it, did a little machine stitching , then did hand stitching and embroidery.  I added more birds to the ones on the sky fabric with a Sharpie, then faced the entire piece and stitched it to the back of the jacket.  Look closely and you may see a kitty peeking from behind the brush.

This is how the piece looks on the back of the jacket.  I just could not get a good picture of the completed piece.

There is a story to the picture I created.  You can read it on the Endeavourer Blog.

Please enjoy the pieces done by the other members.  It's always fun to see how everyone depicts the theme.

Grateful:  Today I am grateful that I was invited to joint the group. I have some great sewing skills.  Quilting is new for me and Art Quilts are a wonder.  I definitely had focus when stitching this piece and I am anxious to find out what the next Challenge Theme will be.

Monday, July 15, 2019

The Devil Dog - Killer formerly known as Harley

You've seen him before if you are frequent visitor.  You may remember how we got him.  How he claimed Terry for his person.  How he torments the squirrels.  Now I'll tell you that we HAD four baby squirrels in the big tree in the back yard.  Yesterday the third one went to Critter Heaven.  Terry says it is what his breed was bread to do...hunt rodents.  We find dead stuff all the time in the back yard.  Squirrels, birds, mice.  I live with that.  It's nature.


I moved my sewing machine to the dining room table so Terry will feel like he has company as it is widely open  to the living room where he sits.  HOWEVER, it means that I can't leave ANYTHING on the dining room table when we go away as the dogs have free access to the kitchen and dining room. Both of my Min Pin have power jumping abilities.  But Harley is the one that must do something to get even with us for leaving him alone.  His target will be anything we might leave on the dining room table. 

I few weeks ago, we only went out to take my sister's mail to her. (she lives across the street).  But then I asked Terry to drive past a friend's house who lives one block over.  She sold her home and moved in with her daughter and the new owners were doing extensive renovation to the entire house.  That lead to stopping to talk to my SIL who what sitting on her front porch. (all Terry's family live in this neighborhood).  We were gone about 20 minutes.

When we came home I immediately knew that Harley was a bad dog.  The other two greeted us at the door.  Turning the corner to enter the dining room I saw red.  No, not blood.  My current Endeaverour's project was in shreds.  Luckily the patterns I had made were not on the table.

So, with one month to go to the reveal I get a do over on a project I REALLY enjoyed.  But I am up for the challenge.  Dang Dog!!

Grateful:  Today I am grateful that I have three pooches that keep me on my toes and love me to death.

Do you have a furry friend that tries your patience?
xx, Carol

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Life is NEVER a Walk In The Park

The upcoming reveal for the Endeavourers group is coming up.  The theme is "A Walk In The Park".  The phrase depicts whatever you are talking about is EASY.  Well, not feeling sorry for myself at all, I would dearly enjoy at least a year of Walk In The Park.

As far as the piece I am working on I needed feet so here is just a peek at what is coming soon.

Terry and my life has been having too many bumps in the road, mainly regarding his health.  We have been struggling to keep his BP in line.  All the past few years we worried about HBP but for the last almost year, it's been an issue to keep it UP.  He takes a lot of medications so it's been a struggle to get it all right.  Here is a warning for you. He has had RA since 1976 and over the years has taken Ibuprofen and Nsaids to control pain and inflammation.  Well, they injured his  kidneys.  He is in stage 3 of the disease and we have been unable to control elevations that all have a part in his disease progressing.  There is no repair.  There are so many ways all of his illnesses affect his body.  Managing all his meds and doctors is just about a full time job.

Mostly if I were to rant, it would be against those that ask how Terry is doing.  We say "Oh pretty good" because we don't want to go into it.  Then THEY say "Do You Think He Could" then comes whatever they want him to do.  NO NO NO! It just ticks me off.

Okay, on the lighter side.  We have a family of ducks living under the bushes in our front yard.  I bet the parents are the ones I kept chasing out of the pond in the spring. I think they all waddled off to the river, but I never saw them go.  I could never get a picture.

Then there was a kind of black bird at the pond.  He kept diving into the deep end then quickly back out.  He was wet so I couldn't really see what bird it was it happened so quickly. (There IS a birdbath in the pond area too).  Anyway, I kept seeing it happen and then I saw it was a Cat Bird.  The Cat Birds always have a nest in our Honeysuckle bush that is next to the house and I consider it to be the pond area.  Anyway, it's fun to watch them.  Robins go to the pond a lot and always sit on a ledge inside the pond near the side to take their baths.  We have an awful lot of critters to watch around here.

Northern Indiana is HOT and HUMID.  Temps are in the 80s and we have 90s forecast for next week.

Grateful: Today  I am especially grateful for Terry's great doctors.

Tell me something fun in your comments.  I'm keeping my chin up and finding things to laugh about.
xx, Carol


Saturday, June 29, 2019

All The Days

Every single day, at the end of the day, I wonder where the day went.

Like just about everyone, our weather has become something we are not accustomed to no matter what time of the year it is.  Here in Northern Indiana we have gone from a too cool much rainy spring, to 5 days rain then two sunny hot humid days and then it starts over again.

This is the view from my kitchen window.  It has taken a lot of work to get this area in viewing shape.  The weeds were a jungle, but I toughed it out pulling weeds, transplanting plants from the front garden and laying mulch.  We are eliminating the large garden in the front of the house.

The weather has wreaked havoc with the pond.  We are raging war on what our pond guy says is blanket algae on the bottom.  There are a couple of things that may have caused the condition and it is an understatement to say I am slapping my forehead for adding some fern kind of plants a few years ago.  BUT the pond lily are thriving and continuously bloom. 

We had a turtle visit for about two days.  He left during one of those 5 days of rain.  My frogs still live out there and I thank them every single day for their nightly serenade.  We have a snake (just one I hope)  that I caught one day and unfortunately dropped it.  Terry saw it again but he is elusive.  I tell that snake to just stay out of my sight and he might be ok.  I am of the belief that the only good snake in my yard is a dead one.  But then  I wonder about this:  My SIL that left this world a few months ago had a snake visitor in her yard.  We spoke with her about it often.  Now I am wondering if that snake appearing here is because she is thinking of us because when we see it we sure think of her.

Oh, one morning I looked out the window and saw a baby duck swimming from the middle of the pond back to shore.  He climbed out and hit in the plants.  I went out to check it out...why didn't I grab my phone.  Well there he was, very small and wet.  Not a Mallard baby, or a Canadian Goose baby.  What the heck.  Then I watched him from the window jump back in the pond, swim to the other end, climb out to the deck and go off the other end into the plants.  We never say him again, though I look all the time.  My Indiana bird book says he might have been a Wood Duck which would make sense because we saw an adult Wood Duck in there about a month ago.  A mystery that we will never know the answer to.

There has not been much sewing here and I haven't been on the internet either.  Terry has a lot going on with his health.  We have been battling to keep his BP where it should be. Too many other issues to talk about.  Terry, the yard, then sewing I guess.  And I caught the crud.  Geez, summer allergies did me in, lol.

Grateful:  Today and everyday I am grateful for technology.  My grandson who lives in California video calls for messages everyday.  We get tons of pictures of all of them.  So much better than "the old days" when you took a picture on film, had it developed, then sent the pictures in the mail to who ever you wanted to share them with.

Wishing everyone a happy and SAFE 4th of July.
xx, Carol

Monday, June 3, 2019

I Have My Limits

We have lived in our house for 30+ years.  Our land is 3/4 of an acre.  We have always had a Wheelhorse garden tractor.  Actually we have a few...more than one...a collection really.  I don't get it, but Terry DOES.  Anyway I have used all of them at one time or another.  Until Terry bought a riding mower like THIS one.  No steering wheel.  You pull one lever to go left or right, pull both forward or backward to go Forward or Backward!  Easy, huh?  Well it messes with my mind.  Well, Terry takes care of our yard and my sister's.  Last week when he mowed, he told me I'm going to have to start cutting the grass because he felt horrible when he got done. It jostled him around too much. I accept the challenge.  However, it has rained almost everyday since the last cut.  At this rate, I'll never have to use the green machine since there are 7 more days of rain in the forecast.

My mind works differently than anyone else I know.  Like my issue with road maps.  I know North, South, East and West using a map.  But I want the top of the map to be the direction that we are traveling.  You know, just like your GPS map.  I LOVE GPS, except when it takes us WAY out of our way...then I get out the trusty map and guide Terry to a better route, lol. AND I have poor depth perception.

I have a blog friend that posted about stitching with her grand daughter.  Lots of my blog friends stitch with their kids and grands.  I love that because it ensures that the craft will live on. That got me to thinking about how I learned to sew. I'm 67 so you can figure how long it has been since I was in school.  Personally, school came easy for me and I think our educational system back then in some ways was far superior to what most kids in this area have today.  I knew I would not go to college due to finances and family situation.  Clerical classes were offered in high school and I too all that were offered.  I also had an elective each year and chose to learn to sew.  In our technical age, kids have so much more to learn, so classes offered today are far different that back in the 60s.  However, like a lot of states Indiana offers a voucher system in which they divert public school funds to charter schools, but don't monitor the schools that receive the funds.  It is one of my pet peeves about living here.

I have to laugh when I think back about when my daughter was young.  She didn't want anything to do with sewing, probably because I used to drag her to the fabric store.  She DID love the clothes I made her.  She always told me she would never sew.  However, when here kids were small she asked for one of my machines so she could make the kid's Halloween costumes.  Let me tell you, what she created was amazing and without a pattern or any sewing education at all.  Once when she was laid off from her job during a recession, she paid her bills by selling re-fashioned clothes on Ebay.  She had an eye for creating Goth clothes and sold everything she created.  It was a fad at that time.

Grateful:  I am especially grateful to know how to sew and embroider.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

There is Sun in California

There is sun in California.  How do I know?  My grandson lives in LA now and we video chat almost everyday while he is sitting in the sun on his balcony.  However, here in Northern Indiana our weather pattern has developed into 3 cool partly sunny days followed by 4 rainy days.  If you have read my blog, you know that we take a lot of pride in our pond area.  In most years, by now, my gardens would be weeded and ready to plant annual flowers when the time is right.  Sadly, this is a look at my pond from the kitchen window.  I woke up yet again to rain.

But nature carries on.  Birds are building nests and the frogs and toads are singing day and night.  We always have a Robin build a nest in a spot that is in an awkward place. We have a Cardinal nesting in our carport.  The catbird has a nest in our Honey Suckle.  There is always activity at our feeders, though a nightly visit from a cute Raccoon has made it a necessity to bring our suet in at night and refill the grape jelly each morning.  The elusive Cedar Wax wings come to the pond and is the only place I see them. Of course our beloved Blue Birds have again made one of the houses their home.  And my Crows come every day, though I think one of their offspring have separated and formed their own family.  I now have two crows and four crows coming daily.  The two are my originals because they look for me through my window when the squirrels have eaten their bread.

So, I patiently wait for the three sunny days, I revel in Nature bringing me the entertainment I  enjoy so much.  And stitch.

Grateful:  Today I am grateful that Nature has provided me a focus and the gloomy days have not brought depression.

How is the weather where YOU are.  Do YOU enjoy the entertainment that Mother Nature provides.

I DO admit that I'd rather live in a beach house.

xx, Carol

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Endeavourer's Challenge Reveal

RAIN DROPS KEEP FALLING ON MY HEAD is the theme for the May 1st reveal.

Before I started this piece, I re-read the mission statement for the group.  We aspire to share enthusiasm and inspiration, challenge ourselves, develop our own style and encourage each other.

Looking back on the pieces I have done for this group, this IS my style. I do challenge myself to try something I have never done in each piece. In this piece it's the Leaf Umbrella.  I wanted it to be 3D.  It stands away from the fabric. I found the leaves on fabric in my stash.  I cut them out and sandwiched them with batting and hand stitched the spines.  There is wire along the edges of the leaves to enable them to stand away from the fabric.

I'm not happy with the stitching on the piece.  I should have stitched them in a hoop before I added the fabric to the piece.  There are other things I might have done a bit differently, but I'm not going to pick the piece apart with criticism. I'm an optimistic person and I just couldn't think about depicting a piece about rain falling on me which usually denotes pessimism.  My interpretation comes from deep in my thoughts and from my heart. The rain is falling all around this frog with the drops plunking in the water all around him and he is happily enjoying his day.  But the frogs in my pond in the back yard HIDE when it rains. Go figure.

I have a history with frogs that started back in the 9th grade when my Biology teacher gave us the assignment to bring a frog to class to be dissected.  Since I always got As or Bs, his threat of a failing grade if I didn't show up with a frog sent me to a local creek to get one. Off I went to the creek that I crossed every day on my way to school.  I had seen frogs there and sure enough, sitting on a rock at the edge of the bank was a big old frog.  He didn't hop away when I arrived.  Brave frog that KNEW I wasn't going to net him, lol. I talked to him for a while, probably saying silly things that a 14 year old girl might say.  When I bid him goodbye, I wished him a long and healthy life. I remember that.   I didn't catch a frog, or buy the frog one of my classmates offered.  Right now I can see that teacher in my mind, but cannot for the life of me remember his name, as I told him that I would NOT be dissecting a frog.  I could not bring myself to kill an animal or any reptile.  He saw my resolution and offered the alternative of dissecting a CLAM.  If you have never seen the inside of a clam, if they have organs they all look alike. Why is that a memory that my mind chooses to remember?

That started my love for frogs.  I have quite a collection of frog figurines and will use this piece in a display I will put on my wall.

If you have been a long time reader here, you know that I often talk about the frogs in my pond and that they are one of my Spirit Animals.    They never jump in when I approach.  I'm pretty sure they like to hear me tell them how happy I am that they found a home in my pond and how pretty they are.

Grateful:   Today I am grateful for being a member of the Endeavourer Group.  It is a great group of fabric artists that are far more talented than I am, but accept and encourage me.

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Ed and Bonnie - Good Neighbors

Today my friend Rose who blogs as Pics & Pieces posted a piece about her helpful neighbor.  It got me thinking about some of our best neighbors.  I think the one at the top of our list would be Ed. 

We moved in our home in 1976.  Ed quickly came across the street to introduce himself and bring us a whirly-gig he had made from yarn and dowel rods.  We cherished it until the weather just killed it from old age. We were in our early 20s while Ed had just retired from the local newspaper.  Shortly after we moved in, Terry was laid off . One morning shortly before Easter we woke up to find a ham on the hood of our car.

Ed became like a grandfather to us.  He would come over and ask Terry for help or to fix this or that.  Ed would bring us a gift of some crafty item he had made or some tool he told Terry he knew he would never use again but Terry would, like post hole diggers..  We had his wooden butterflies on our fence for many years until they also died a weathered death. Ed's wife Bonnie would bring us her specially decorated Santa cookies at Christmas.  Laurie would be sure to take them a piece of birthday cake when we celebrated birthdays including her dog's birthday.  They loved that.

We kind of resented Ed and Bonnie's son.  He was Terry's age and we hardly ever saw him come to see or help his dad.

When Ed died, he left a little monetary gift to us. We felt honored that he loved us that much, as we loved him.  He left the house to his son and his pride and joy his Model T Ford that Ed always drove in the local parade and their Air Stream travel trailer.  Soon the son and his wife moved in the house.  Sold the Model T Ford and the Air Stream RV.  He also came over and asked Terry to give him back the post hole diggers. On principle, Terry refused.

We miss seeing Ed and Bonnie across the street and our visits to pass a bit of time.  Needless to say we don't interact much with his son except for a friendly wave.  We DID take their trash can back up to their house when the son was in the hospital because that's what neighbors do.

I think we are good neighbors that are willing to help.  That is the Spirit of America, don't you think?

Grateful:  Today I am grateful that Terry and I have remained the good neighbors that we were taught to be.

Do you have a neighbor that is special to you?  I hope so.

Happy Easter

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Something New Here

My kitchen faucet has been a problem for about a year.  Terry replaced parts to keep it from dripping.  About a month later...dripping again.  Three times.  When my grandson bought his new RV, it had a faucet similar to this one.  I absolutely fell in love with it.  I could not find one in the stores, but I didn't look too hard in plumbing fixture stores.  Finally I got serious and started looking on line.  I found just what I wanted at  The price was right so I ordered it.  I pretty much figured that Terry would not be able to install it because it meant laying under the sink and using both arms, but usually my younger grandson Ky will come to help.  He calls working with Papa the Brain and he Brawn.  When I hoped that faucet Terry looked at it like he had never seen those hook ups before.  No problem, I called Abe's plumbing to come on over, lol.  Well, you know how one thing leads to another.  Before that plumber came to the house I was going to have to get off my butt and wash down cabinets, ceramic tiles and appliances, scrub the floor and put down a new area rug.  Oh, those are all things I needed to do, but that plumber coming into my house put me in action.  One great thing was that I had to clean out the stuff that had accumulated in the cabinet UNDER the sink.  How many cleaning products do I REALLY need, lol. So here it is and I absolutely love it.  A long time ago when the pull down faucets came out I ran out to buy it.  It wasn't THAT long before the dang thing would not retract.  I like that this once has a holder to put it in.  The facet swivels and the sprayer has a long hose. I ALMOST bought a new sink too, but I really don't need one.  But I really should paint the walls that are not ceramic tile.  One thing always leads to another.

There HAS been some stitching going on too. I added patches to my Boro jacket.  The Cubs and other teams are on one sleeve.  I have Tiger fabrics to go on the other.  I decided this jacket does not have to be done before I wear it.

I am also working on the next reveal for the Endeavourers Group and CUTTING (UGH) fabric for a quilt to Nic.

Terry and I are working at cleaning out the garage that we park our car in.  Terry is a hoarder of sorts.  This is a slow moving project and there have been "WORDS" regarding what NEEDS to be kept and what should go in that big black trash bag in the corner, lol.  Well, like I tell him, any progress is PROGRESS.  We might be done by the end of the summer.  Several years ago I bought him a cabinet system that is at the one whole end of the garage.  When we are done, if it doesn't fit in those cabinets it goes OUT.  26 feet of cabinet is PLENTY of room.  Don't you agree?

Grateful:  Today I am grateful that after 46 years our WORDS are quickly forgotten.

What about you.  Do you have any spring cleaning projects you are working on?
xx, Carol

Friday, March 29, 2019

Birds and Where The Heck Is Carol

 Terry and I were driving on a road near us that runs along the St. Joseph River.  Several times we have seen an Eagle in the area, but never close enough to get a picture.  As we were driving, I saw an Eagle fly as if to land in a tree.  Terry immediately turned around so we could find it and luckily it perched prettily and I was able to get several pictures.

I LOVE big birds so you can imagine how thrilled I was. The area where this is has a small wooded island so I'm hoping that there is a nest there.  Last year a young Eagle was flying low over our house.  I couldn't believe my eyes. I second guessed myself.  Was that REALLY an Eagle?  Now I'm pretty sure it was.
I have 3 crows.  Yes they ARE mine!!  They come every year.  Last year two of them had babies and one of them went off to have babies of it's own. It is a family of 4 and they come around, but they are not MY crows.  MY crows come every day to find the bread I leave in the driveway for them to find.  They know my face.  When they see me, the call to me and I call back.  If they come and there is no bread for them, one of them will sit in the tree in front of my patio door and look in and Caw to get our attention to let us know they are "waiting".  He will wait there while the other two wait in a tree across the street waiting for me to open the garage door and bring their treat.  After I go back in, they swoop in and grab a piece.  My three crows bring joy and I love it that they know me.

We are relieved that our fish in the pond survived the Polar Vortex.  The Koi didn't, but they need air in the winter and I refuse to put a heater in the pond.  I told Terry he will just have to find joy in the Goldfish.

So that leaves Where Is Carol?  Well right here.  The last time I posted, I mentioned that my MIL fell and broke her hip. Two weeks in the hospital and then to rehab.  Since my FIL passed we have not had a very good relationship with my MIL because of the horrible way she treated my FIL before he died. Terry's sis was basically taking care of her when she came home.  But my MIL is a hateful person and told my SIL off so she washed her hands of the deal.  Sometimes words and lack of gratitude just cut too deep. I'm not sure where the situation is headed, but I hope my BIL will be able to work something out with her.

At least after my MIL's fall, I decided I better get that Bone Density test my doc has urged me to get for a few years.  Results were good and the only suggestion was to take a high dose of vitamin D-3 for a month.

THEN...Oh you thought that was all?  Enough??  No, I wish.  I am currently uncomfortable with a case of Shingles.  Along my waist, right where my waistband is. And if you think that you can only get Shingles once...well that is not true.  Terry has had them twice so I am worried he will catch them from me as they are contagious.  I had wanted to get a vaccine for them but didn't because it is a live virus vaccine and with Terry's weakened immune system his doc advised against it.

My grandson moved from Oregon and has settled near Los Angeles for the time being.  For sure his move from Indiana is permanent because he got a driver's license out there and plated his cars with CA plates.  That is at least Semi-Permanent to me.

I have been stitching a bit, mostly hand work and working on the next Challenge for the Endeavourer's Group.

Grateful:  I am grateful for technology.  My grandson calls Terry at least every other day, mostly everyday.  We get pictures and videos everyday from either Corey or Alyssa.

I am not so patiently waiting for spring weather.  I THINK it's coming.  How's the weather where YOU are?
xx, Carol

Monday, March 4, 2019

Gratification Lifts Your Spirits

 This was going to be the year I would get serious about making quilts.  I have all the tools.  I have great books.  I subscribed to some awesome U-tube videos.

I have been stitching blocks that I haven't shown yet, really for a lack of time to post them.  January and February brought family issues.  My favorite niece was in the hospital and now rehab for almost 2 months with a deadly leg infection that almost killed her.  (Be careful where you get your pedicures done).  The day after Marcella's funeral my mother-in-law fell and broke her hip.  Two weeks in the hospital and now in rehab.  She expects us to visit every day, but that is pretty much impossible with Terry battling too many headaches.
But it has still had us running around too much as all of these health facilities are in different towns.  Even though the towns pretty much run into each other, it's still a lot of travel.

BUT.  When I made the basket weave piece for the Endeavourer's group, I had way more material than I needed so I decided to turn it into a small quilt that I will send to Corey J.  It's 36" square and probably the right size to cover his legs in a carrier.  They just moved to LA so I suppose they won't be needing quilts, lol.

Anyway, my original plan was to stitch in the black ditches but since my ditches don't line up I decided to tie the quilt.  I used flannel for the batting and a piece of this black "love" fabric for the back.  You may think the colors are not appropriate for a baby, but they dress Corey in red a lot and the decor in their RV is black.

So you might wonder about the title of this post.  Even though I didn't execute the pattern perfectly, I am so happy to have completed this little quilt. In the future I am SURE that I will make a "stained glass" quilt because I love the effect even though I didn't pull it off on this one.  Completing this quilt gave me GREAT satisfaction and it was a great learning experience.

Grateful:  Today I am grateful that I have been relatively healthy.  I'm ALMOST grateful that the weather is in the single digits because we stay home when it's this cold, lol.

Tell me, are you self taught in the craft you love the most, or did you take lessons.
xx, Carol

Sunday, February 17, 2019

A Hard Week

I wasn't going to post about this, but a thread keeps going through my mind when I try to go to sleep.  I keep thinking what I would write on my blog to honor Marcella.

I could give a tribute.  Tell everyone what she did that gave me such a close bond to her.  But that is REALLY personal. A time in my life that I choose not to share my thoughts about with ANYONE.

My Sister-in-law Marcella lost her battle a little over a week ago. She lost her husband several years ago.  He had a heart attack while snow blowing.  She was lonely after he died.  Shortly after he passed, her daughter  Sara was diagnosed with breast cancer. Sara went through treatment twice and after about two years she was cancer free.  During that time Marcella had pain in her breast.  She ignored it, still in depression of being a widow.  Then she felt a lump under her arm and decided to see a doctor.  Her fears were confirmed, but she did not want to undergo treatment.  She had seen what her daughter went through and just did not care about her own disease.  She was lonely. She told her sister about the positive test.  The news spread in the family.  Brothers, sisters, children and grandchildren urged her to have surgery and treatment. By the time the surgery was scheduled and treatment began, the cancer had spread.  More lumps and tumors that eventually moved to her lungs, liver and brain.  The treatment took a tremendous toll on her body.  I cannot tell you how difficult her side effects were. So much so that when she passed her grandson spoke the words we were all thinking...we should have let her go so she would not have gone through this ordeal for naught.  She underwent treatment for a couple of years until the doctors told her they could not contain the cancerous cells any longer. She passed just a couple of weeks after treatment stopped.

Her funeral was a week after she passed so that her grandchildren could gather from other places in the country.  That was good because it gave everyone time to get used to the idea of not being able to speak with her everyday.  That said, the one day viewing took a tremendous toll on those close to her.  Marcella was truly a person that no one would ever have a bad word or thought for. I still think of her the last time I saw her sitting at her kitchen table joking with Terry and telling him "you're crazy" after he said something that made her laugh.  He did that and she said that a lot.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

No New Word Here

Remember when as soon as the New Year came bloggers would post an "inspiration" or "focus"  word for the year?  I did that too.  But then by the time February rolled around, just like resolutions,  those words were long forgotten.
I haven't seen many posts about a WORD this year. That  got me to thinking about the whole WORD concept.

Since January kind of kicked my butt, I have been thinking of February as the beginning of the new year for me.  I got to thinking about why resolutions and WORDS didn't work so great for me.  Then I realized that the real key is that I need to break habits that keep me from doing what I really want to spend time doing. For a while now that has been sewing and reading. I won't tell you what the habits I want to break ARE.  But I have already started the process and I am really happy so far with the results.  I read that if you do something for 21 days it becomes a habit.  I hope that's true of breaking old ones too.

Grateful: Today I am grateful for thread. It's what keeps our pieces together both materially and intangibly.

Tell me something you have been thinking of doing, but have not yet done.
xx, Carol

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Put January to Bed

Corey DeLater Jr:
This is my new great grandson, named for his father Corey. The kids were visiting here from Halloween to right after Christmas.  They left a couple of times to travel to Florida where Alyssa's family is and to take care of their business there.

When they left for home, the baby was due in a little less than a month. It is a 30 hour drive from our house to where they stay.  We were on pins and needles until they got home because they headed right into the first snow storm that hit here.  They travel in a 5th wheel so they could stop whenever they needed to.  It took them 5 days to get home. 

We were so relieved when little Corey was born healthy and happy.  I already know I'll call him Corey J. (J for jr.)

I already introduced you to Max.  He is turning out to be a great little dog.  HOWEVER, Harley did have a bit of a time adjusting to the attention Max gets, but it's all good now except that Harley is teaching Max all of his bad habits, and Max is teaching Harley the ones Max already knew.

One thing Max taught Harley is that it's climb on the table.  Well my sewing machine is now on the dining room table.  When we left the house the other day, I cleared the table except for my machine.  I put the foot pedal in my sewing room and didn't think they would mess with the cord which on the table next to the machine.  Well I was wrong and that darned Harley destroyed it.  Which leads to the NEXT January issue.

Terry's Motorized Recliner:

Terry has a recliner that has a motor that lifts the leg rest.  The motor died with the leg rest raised.  A replacement motor is $150.  He thinks he can fix it with parts he has in his back garage but it's been too cold to go out there.  I switched places with it and another recliner we have.  I told him not to bother fixing it because I will buy a new one in the spring.  BUT, he tried the electric cord from it on my sewing machine and VUWLAH....Sewing machine is fixed.

Computer Issues Resurfaced:

I was AWOL from the internet for a little while.  It seems that Microsoft wants my Win 7 to be Win 10.  I had downloaded a file to deny that update as MS is trying to do it without permission.  But some issue happened in my last episode so off to the shop it went and it's all good now.

The REALLY distressing News:

Terry's sister that has been battling cancer for the last 3 years is losing the battle.  The docs told her they cannot control it any longer.  She is now under the care of a Hospice Doctor.


His brother's daughter who is about 50 fell and injured her back.  A few days later her leg swelled with a terrible infection...not related to the fall.  She has been in the hospital for a week with the back injury, the infected leg, fluid around her lungs, Pneumonia and now an MRI showed spots on her lungs and liver.  No diagnoses on them yet so we are keeping faith there is no cancer involved. 

I am grateful for oh so many things.  In particular right at this very moment I am grateful that we have not let all these issues get us down.

I really just needed to make this post to put January and all it's issues behind us.

Monday, February 4, 2019

The Endeavourers TEXTURE theme

The Endeavourers theme for the first project for 2019 was texture.  I have seen basket weave designs created using fabric and I wanted to give it a try.  This piece is stitched in rows using 4-1/2" squares with a row of 1/4" black sewn along two sides. The squares are then stitched in an alternating pattern.    Each square and strip were the correct size.  I sure thought my seams were stitched to the correct width.  This piece looks more wonky in this picture than it really is.

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

I know that just about everyone across the country is suffering from the current weather pattern.  I wanted to post about it really to document the temps for the day for future reference.  Our temp when I woke up was -16 and wind chill of - 44.  Minus 44.  I was watchng the weather channel.  Do you know what can happen at that wind chill?  If you are outside and don't blink your eyes your cornea will freeze.  Also, the post office will not be delivering mail.  I'm not sure about the newspaper, but I'll get it Saturday when it is supposed to be 50 degrees.  Brother

At 7AM Bosco wanted to go outside.  Max followed him to the door then backed up.  Bosco got his job done quickly and ran back in.  Later Harley wanted to go...NOT but I made him and that was fast too.

This is going to be a crazy dog day at my house.

Tell me what YOUR temps are.

Grateful:  Today I am totally grateful for electricity because our house has electric heat.

Monday, January 28, 2019

A New Friend

This is Max.  Jumping on the table is not allowed here and he is learning that quickly.

When Corey left, of course he took his little pooch Kiki with him.  Kiki had become great friends with both Bosco and Harley.  All three were playing all the time. When Kiki left, Harley began tormenting Bosco to play ALL THE TIME.  Mostly that meant Harley knipped at Bosco's ears, nose and the back of his hind leg.  Bosco was in misery.  So I got the idea that Harley needed a play friend.  I searched Min Pin rescue sights but none were close to home.  Then I spotted Max and low and behold he was right here in a town 5 miles away.  I mentioned him to Terry who said he would rather not have a brown Min Pin.  Every day I looked at Max's picture...sometimes several times a day.  When Terry had a doc appt a few days later right near the Humane Society, I asked him to go by and see Max.  I couldn't get him off my mind.  The HS called him Spock because of his ears.  He was taken in as a stray and no one came to look for him.  That broke my heart. The HS estimated that he is about 2 years old, updated his shots and neutered him.  He has what I call Donkey Ears that stand tall and the shortest legs I ever saw.  I made an application to adopt him and the next day took Harley to see him.  Harley can be sassy and I wanted to be sure they would get along.  The meet went well and we brought Spock home.  I immediately renamed him Max. After all, Spock was not his real name anyway.  On the way home, Harley sat on my lap and would NOT even look at me..jealousy was rearing it's ugly head.  It took Harley about 5 days to adjust to Max and play with him.  They get along great as long as no toys are involved because Harley thinks every toy in the house is his. Bosco thinks Max is great.  Max is my shadow and I love him dearly.  Sometimes I think about how he came to be at the HS.  But sometimes when I go to pet him he flinches leading me to think he has been hit.  I can't imagine why anyone would find the need to hit him. So now I have 3 dogs again.

It's been a while since I posted.  A really lot of things are going on in my life.  I'll be posting in February talking about what I have been up to.  If I had a New Year resolution, it would be to post more.  I have been reading your posts, but not commenting much.  I get that way sometimes.  Luckily I didn't get hit with depression this holiday.  That may have been the first time in many, many years.

Grateful:  Oh, that is easy today.  I am grateful for Dog Rescue organizations and totally support them as I can.  Max is a wonderful dog and I just can't tell you how happy he makes me.

Tell me something happy today.  We are expecting 6 inches of snow and the temperature on Wednesday is forecasted to be -20 and -40 windchill. I hope my birds and fish survive.
xx, Carol