And the road goes on forever...

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Merry Christmas!

May your joys be bountiful and your troubles few. We wish you happy and safe holidays! 

Marc and I are again without family close; just the two of us and our four fur babies. We are not even getting a white Christmas this El Nino year—yesterday we broke a 120 year old record for the warmest day ever in December, 49 degrees. I’m sure at some point this winter we’ve got to see snow; they are predicting winter may finally settle in here next week and drop three to four inches in Waupaca and much more up north. I’ll need a refresher on how to operate the snow blower!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Tis the Season

While everyone else seems to be scampering and scurrying with the holiday rush, the only thing keeping me busy seems to be clearing out my inbox of all the “black” this and “cyber” that sales recently clogging it up. Why must these companies feel as though you need to be notified of the same sale three times a day? My memory is getting bad but not such that I can’t remember the email just sent to me a few hours ago. 

Actually, I have been doing some things, and Marc is continuing to build in the basement. He is erecting framing for a bathroom; which will not be built out at this point in time, so will in effect become a darkened canning room with shelving. He’s also building the shelving he wanted in his office area, hoping to get a lot of the basement mess into totes and organized in storage. Next up it will be my job to paint them all.
I decided to make more free art for our walls, heavy on the lodge rustic, using some old pallet wood and lilac twigs and birch bark. Marc loved them and wants another now for the shed naming it “Marc’s Smokehouse”, and his sister feels I should start a business on Etsy. I gotta say, I do love them myself!
This past Saturday I worked most of the day as a Santa’s helper, as the community was invited to come in to the shelter and get their pet photos taken with Santa. We had a variety beyond dogs, including a cat, and a rabbit that had been adopted from us awhile ago.
Mother Nature continues to bless us with a mild winter so far but did offer up just a morning‘s brief kiss about a week ago. That was followed by some freezing fog and now has just settled into plain ‘ol damp foggy skies. The upcoming Christmas won’t require much of me since we won’t be traveling and no one will visit. It’s a real question as to whether it will be a white one for us. Time to get back to my inbox and its two hundred ads….

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Just Projects

Life has been pretty routine for us lately; even Wisconsin’s weather has cooperated here in the Banana Belt with nary a snowflake falling as yet. North and south of us have gotten layered, but we’re still viewing green grass and leafless trees. Early this month we finally and officially listed our Yuma lot for sale, reducing the price even further to $89,900. Our luck—the bottom has fallen out of the Canadian dollar and they just aren’t traveling and buying like they were before. If anyone knows of anyone however, we are willing to finance the entire thing with 20% down, fully amortized for up to 15 years.

Marc’s been putting in long hours at work so his tasks here have narrowed to a few hours on the weekends. He put in more lights and plugs in the basement and provided me with a floor outlet in the great room so I could finally get a floor lamp by the couch. He finished the sheetrock in the stairwell (it still needs tape, texture and paint) and built himself a workbench. I had been looking at the thrift stores for a stool for him but hadn’t any success when he snagged this one, brand new, from work for $25! 
I have a long list of accomplishments which have been hanging fire in my mind for awhile. I completed the burlap valances, which along with the roller shades, is the extent of my window furnishings for this point. Our views are so nice it just seemed a shame to cover the windows with drapes. My d├ęcor seems to have morphed into going “lodge look”, and a fabric I’ve long admired is buffalo check. I was leaning towards a black and white for the dining chair cushions I wanted to make but at the last minute decided that red is a wonderful accent color in here against the grey so I ordered red and black instead. I had enough leftover to also make a cover for the rocking chair pad as well. Then one day in Goodwill I came across a few yards of both red & black buffalo check and black fleece of equal size and decided for the $7 cost I would make my own throw rather than buy one. I had fallen in love with some made by Denali which were running $129 online but they can wait. On the same day I also found this vintage cabin tray with an embossed surface.
I got tired of my ordinary looking dumpster dive nightstand in my office so I painted it with light sage chalk paint. I found a wreath in Goodwill which I dismantled; using the berries in my copper pot and the wreath alone on the armoire. I had another twig wreath floating around so decided to gather up a few of the corn husks blowing around our yard from the neighbor’s harvest and made a wreath out of those.
Earlier in the year rummaging around behind the shop, I found a large piece of old ceiling tin. I had the idea I’d like to use it hanging somewhere so I finally managed to get a chunk cut out and inserted into a vintage frame for use in our bedroom. And finally I’m trying my hand at stenciling; using a cabinet door and paint pens I’m attempting a plaque for the kitchen.
I also recently lent my hand to helping out the shelter baking dog treats for a craft sale. We’ve had fantastic sunsets this month and before deer hunting opened last Saturday were able to watch these guys daily in our yard. Now they’ve disappeared.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving; here’s hoping all my readers enjoy a memorable one and stay safe and happy wherever it may find you. Ours will just be the two of us with our four fur babies, but they LOVE turkey!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Thank You for Your Service

When I was wandering around this fall I decided to drive through the cemetery attached to Kings Veteran’s Home near Waupaca. It’s a peaceful setting on a rolling hillside with wave after wave of symmetrical headstones; each one denoting a life somehow connected to America’s fighting forces.
Picking up snippets of a life from a gravestone always make me think of the hereafter. Is Leland Squires fishing some lake with a heavenly endless limit of fish? Is Richard Verber roaring down some twisties, pushing on the throttle because he never has to worry about crashing his heavenly bike? Does Lawrence Hess’s wife no longer experience the sun’s warmth because her sunshine has been taken from her? How is your epitaph going to read? Will it be significant enough that years later strange people will be stopping to read it and wonder about you?
Take time this week to thank and appreciate the veterans you may know. My favorite one, my Navy WWII father has been gone five years this month. Maybe in his world his ghost ship is continuing to sail the seas off Okinawa instead of being sunk with such a loss of life. Such is life and war. It never really changes does it?

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Fall's Last Fling

It’s been fleeting this year; taking forever to get here due to the warm weather, gearing up slowly and muddling along with a few early birds then in the space of less than a week we went to full blown peak and beyond. The winds came up and the leaves are scattering ankle deep in yards so I made a trip around Waupaca in one last attempt to record this year’s colors. This was the view I had the last time I got gas at Fleet Farm; a colorful array on its way to glory.
The sun sits low in the sky already but gives off a golden glow this time of year; coupled with the temperamental winds and brisker temperatures it lends a feeling that it is definitely getting close to the hibernation season. Town even seems quiet and subdued; summer tourists long gone leaving streets to us locals. Even the boats weren’t out on the Chain of Lakes so nothing to disturb the crystal clear water and silt bottom.
The sandhill cranes have still been hanging around but appear to be gathering into larger and larger groupings before their migration south. I will miss their haunting calls as they fly low overhead.