Monday, April 26, 2010

" All Work and No Play....... "

It's been an extremely busy week and weekend here in "Siebelsville". As you may or may not know we have been redecorating our living room. I finally finished the painting last week, of coarse this was two days BEFORE I got all of my knee shots! 

The knees do feel good now. When my husband came home he worked all day and evening on Saturday hanging seven pairs of blinds and five curtain rods. While he was working on that I ironed and ironed some more! Five pairs of curtains. I still have to customize three pairs which I will hopefully get to this week.

While the both of us were diligently at work we had a huge deluge of rain. The gutters always flood on our street when it rains but this was the first time in eleven years that we had seen the entire street covered in water. You could not see the street itself. Jake, Katie her friend Natasha and I just stood on the porch along with several other neighbors in disbelief! It's a bit hard to tell in this photo but I think you'll get a better look in the next one.

 This one is a photo of the edge of our driveway and the whole width of the street itself.

I do believe that we were all a bit awestruck!

Speaking of feeling awestruck, this is exactly how I felt when I won a giveaway last week from Wanda at "Brushstrokes from the Heart" (click for link) Wanda is an excellent artist and also a very interesting read! 

She had a drawing for a set of gorgeous note cards, and my name was drawn by her husband. I don't know him but I really, really like him!

The cards came tied with a pretty pink ribbon.

I hope my photo does them justice. They are very beautiful, thank you again Wanda! I can't wait to use them already!

Alright now back to work people! After watching the river flow down our street, Jake and I hung curtains and pictures. We also had a heck of time figuring out what to do with the furniture. Now that the huge radiators were out of the room, we had more options.

My husband comes up with some pretty good ideas so between the two of us we managed to find the right spot for all of our old and somewhat shabby pieces! New furniture, as much as I would LOVE it, just isn't in the budget and I don't see it in the budget anytime soon!

But it's all good as what we do have serves it's purpose and is comfortable. I did my share of cooking for my husband for all of his hard work. I made a pot of potato soup for lunch which Katie and her friend like as well. Then I made a gigantic meatloaf dinner for all of us!

So the biggest challenge in this redo was the fifty pound mirror that I wanted hung over the fireplace. I know how much my husband was dreading this job and he had done so much already that I told him that he could hang it up in two weeks when he comes home. 

Other then that and a few more things that need to be hung we are almost there! We are also going to paint the floors but I think that will have to wait until May or June.

I also managed to get quite a few plants in the ground over the last week. I had the yard all nicely raked and pretty. Then the storm came and our Maple tree left me a gift......

This is only a tiny spot of it. It looks as though it rained miniature helicopter propellers all over the yard. SIGH......

But we were blessed over the weekend with this beautiful surprise....


The Clematis bloomed! The Hollyhocks have buds on them also. All of that rain and all that beauty in one weekend!

Not to mention all of that work! It's paying off though and I may post a photo or two later this week. My oldest daughter, Ginny, doesn't want me to post any photos of the room before I email them to her. Don't ask me why, I don't have a clue but with Mothers Day just around the corner, well you know!

One more thing I have to say and then you can go. I plan on catching up on every ones posts by tomorrow. When my husband is home only four days a month, I just don't like to take the time away from him.

I am alone again now with plenty of time to read so I'll be seeing all of you soon!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

" For Teresa "

A plain old "Happy Birthday" just doesn't seem enough,
for a very special woman, so sweet and strong and tough.

Your thoughts and dreams
make me want to read more,
certainly much more than I had before. 

We've imagined roller coaster rides and walks on the beaches,
All of those things that our hearts beseeches.

Down the sometimes rough and winding roads,
time and time again your faith it reloads.

Yes a plain old "Happy Birthday just doesn't seem enough,
for a sweet and special woman who's also strong and tough.

Click on her name to get to her blog " Just For The Health Of It ".

Thank you Terrie for helping me through some rough spots. Whenever I feel down I just start thinking about a fun day just us girls going for a roller coaster ride screaming our heads off !! 

My wish for your special day is to be a wonderful one whatever you get to do. " Happy Birthday My Friend " ! 

Love Di ♥

Monday, April 19, 2010

" A Sneak Peek "

The color is on the walls, Hallelujah! I thought I'd never get through this project.

This is all I am showing until the room is completed.

The flowers are fading a bit but they were given to me by my husband on my birthday.

Did you guess close on the color?

I was shooting for a caramel color. You wouldn't believe how difficult it was finding it!

Friday, April 16, 2010

" Oh What A Beautiful Evening ! "

It is a gorgeously cool evening here in Southern Illinois. It was so warm and sunny here yesterday which would normally be fine but my son had to come over and dig a grave for my cat "Midnight". However while he is young and strong and barely broke a sweat, I on the other hand got quite over heated finishing the grave. But I just couldn't let it go undone. In the photo there are four graves. The one on the far right still doesn't have the cross up. That was "Spookys" grave from last year.

Midnight's grave is in the front and center. My husband will make a cross for her when he comes home next weekend. Katie and I will paint both Midnights and Spookys crosses then. When I woke up this morning my Carpel Tunnel was really bad from finishing the cemetery and cleaning house.

I am still cleaning house for one of our church families every Thursday. I really don't need to do this any more but have been cleaning for them for over three years now and quite frankly, I enjoy doing it. I know it probably sounds crazy but I do like cleaning and it's always more fun cleaning someone elses house. At least it is for me!

So I sort of gave my hands a break today. I didn't do any work but I did have several errands to run. I also had a bit of office work at church to do. For some reason my phone in my office isn't working and I can't figure out why. All of the other phones work except for mine. So I had to make a few calls in the kitchen! I left a note for Pastor, I tried troubleshooting it myself but didn't get anywhere. Hopefully he'll be able to figure it out.

Katie and I went and did a bit of grocery shopping after school and then she drove to her friends house to spend the night. So I am enjoying this beautiful cool air with my windows and doors open. The neighborhood is so quite this evening I suspect everyone is downtown eating out and/or at the theater. I am just enjoying the quite!

Kate and I had fun yesterday evening trying to get photos of these two cats that are now hanging out in our yard. Yes I said two! Noir, which is what I named the black one has a friend. And I do believe his friend is pregnant!

And while I have been calling him Noir, Katie is calling him Dakota! Why Dakota I haven't the faintest idea. We have both been calling the other one Patches. They are both very friendly (of coarse) and they keep trying to trip me as I walk through the yard. Look at this cats face....

I don't know whats going to happen. We have had outdoor cats before. But if that little one is pregnant as we suspect, I just don't know what I'll do with all of those kittens. I have three indoor cats that are still with us. All three of them are around ten years old and I really wouldn't want to introduce any new cats to them. As it is they don't like the dogs and for the most part live upstairs. 

So for now I guess we are just going to feed them. My husband discovered that Noir has been declawed so we don't know how well he can hunt. Little Patches has already gotten a couple of birds which doesn't make my husband happy but it is the circle of life.

Little Patches is very friendly but won't let us get to close. Katie managed to pet her and gently felt her belly. Kate said that she felt pregnant but she isn't a vet so we really aren't sure. Katie loves Noir/Dakota and really wants him inside. But I do know for sure that I don't want anymore indoor cats.

 So for now I think we'll just have a couple of outdoor kitties! For all I know they may belong to someone already but they seem to be living in our basement window wells. Anybody want a kitten?


Thursday, April 15, 2010

" Time "

"They" say that time heals all wounds. I have found this to be true. But I would like to know who are "they"?

For those of you who don't know me I will give you a bit of background. Two years ago my mother had a triple by-pass surgery after her heart attack. She was a seemingly healthy woman in her early 70's.

Shortly after that I had my first stroke. I am or was not I should say, as healthy as her. I had my second stroke three months later at the age of 50. Oh my God. 

This was the scariest time of my life. I know that mom was worried about me and I was worried about her.

And there is that horrible word. Worry. I don't have my bible handy but I know that I have posted in the past a wonderful verse about worry that my husband always points out to me.

You see I have a lot of faith I just don't have the words memorized. Something my mother taught me at an early age because of the situation that she was in, was that God is everywhere. 

Mom had been through a lot in her life. Her first husband that she fell madly in love with (My Father) abused alcohol to the extent that he would beat her, physically.

I remember one night as a very young girl, sleeping in a bed next to my parents. My father was drunk. I remember him saying " If you move I will kill you."

I must have been about four years old. All I could think of was that I should hold my breath because if he heard me he would think it was my mom.

He would kill her. If I breathed. Son of a bitch. Who would put their child in that situation? What did I learn from this? 

I learned that we love people. Even when they are bad people. I learned that being a parent is very hard. I learned that I can be a better person than my father was.

I also learned that life is so precious. If we have struggled through bad days than we are all the better for it. 

I have learned a lot. The horrible memories have faded now. And I know that this would make mom happy. She forgave. And so can I.

You know that they say "Time heals all wounds". I think that "They" are right. 

It's all within us to decide to let go. Let go of the hurt. Let go of the pain. And just live. 

So tonight when you start to doze off, just let the pain go and remember that "Time WILL heal all wounds".

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

" Bye, Bye Sweet Midnight "

I will get the sad part of the post out of the way first. I had to take our cat, Midnight, to be put down today. She was the oldest of all of our cats, 19 years old.

We had been noticing her failing health this past year although she was still very lovable. Her eyesight was almost gone and she couldn't eat the dry cat food any longer so we had to switch her to canned. Lately she had started to sit in her cat food bowl.

Even though we have a two story house, she wouldn't venture out of Katie's bedroom downstairs. Only to eat and use the litter box. She wanted to be with Katie all of the time the past year and she finally started to urinate in Kate's room. So we made the decision to have her put to sleep. The litter box was only a few feet outside of Kate's room, but she just wouldn't venture out of there anymore.

This was very hard for Katie as Midnight always slept with her but Kate started telling me a few weeks ago that Midnight was just acting very strange. I felt awful for having to take her to the vet but was told that it would have been very costly to keep her going and even then there was no telling if it would help or not.

I stayed in the room with her and held her while I cried until her last breath was taken. Sometimes I really hate being the decision maker. She will be dearly missed. My thoughts while holding her was how much she loved my mom and would come running out for mom's attention when she would visit. So maybe she can sit on mom's lap now.

O.K. that was hard so I will switch things up a bit before I start to cry some more! The Birthday weekend was a lot of fun. Jake didn't get home until Saturday morning so we scrambled around trying to get the yard ready for the B.B.Q.

The Lilac bush cooperated by blooming for the party! Jake grilled steak and our Daughter-in-law brought a salad, corny cobs and a Birthday cake which I really didn't expect. Oh she brought ice cream too. I made some oven roasted potatoes but for the most part I sat and played with the grand kids!

I didn't bring my camera outside with me but I did manage to snap this photo of Sarah, my granddaughter, in the kitchen. She cracks me up. She has somewhere and for some reason started to strike a pose whenever a camera is pointed at her. It's really hysterical, she'll just turn around and pose! She never wanted her photo taken in the past and now she acts like she modeling!

It was a very fun evening which even included a sickly rendition of the "Happy Birthday Song"! You see my family doesn't like to sing. But I do. So I lead everyone in song at birthday parties. Since it was a party for me, well I felt honored that they tried!

The next day I went and did a little flower and plant shopping. I have been focusing these last few years on perennials. I found this interesting bush. I can't remember it's exact name but I think it is a Japanese Pencil bush and grows to about six feet tall.

The pink one is an Azalea bush that I picked up for $1.88 at Lowes! I don't know what the orange one is as it wasn't marked but it is a perennial. It looks like a Lantana but it's not. Poor thing was on the clearance rack. After a bit of water it perked right up. I also bought a tomato plant and a few basic annuals.


Oh I forgot that I also bought another Hosta. I have lots of shade in my yard therefor I also have lots of Hosta's! The other plant is a Columbine which was also on clearance and is a very pretty purple. So you see I have been and will be very busy for a while!

I also managed to get two of my Living Room walls painted yesterday! Only two more to go. Sorry no pictures until the entire room is finished. Jake won't be home for another two weeks so I'll have to wait to get the blinds and curtain rods hung. I just can't do that myself any more, it kills my hands. So the big reveal with before and after photos will most likely be the beginning of May!

Don't worry I'm almost done! While relaxing in the yard on Sunday, we met a new friend. Apparently he has been hanging out in our yard! Katie thinks that he makes a great accessory!

And even though Katie is 15, you know I got to hear THAT question. "Mommy, can we keep him?" ! Mommy said "NO!". But we did feed him as he appeared very hungry. I named him "Noir"  and we haven't seen him since, but I'll betcha as soon as I get my yard all pretty with flowers and plants that he'll turn back up!

It will probably be "Noir's garden litter box!"

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

"Trying to Catch Up!"

Just another quickie post this evening. My husband just left this morning which was a nice surprise as I thought he had to leave yesterday.

It was a busy and fun weekend which I will elaborate on soon. I really just wanted to say Thank you so much to everyone new and old to my blog that took the time to wish me a Happy Birthday.

You all made it very Happy! I am still trying to catch up on all of the blogs that I follow along with some new ones so please forgive me if I haven't been by yet. I will be soon.

Lots of things have been going on around here, some good and some sad. But we are all well. I will try and do a post with more info tomorrow. In the meantime,
Love to you all...........Diana

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

" Thanks Lynilu! "

Today was a pretty busy one for me. Lets see, I spent an hour scraping the paint off the floor that the plastic that I put down missed.

I did three loads of laundry, dishes, cleaned the cat boxes, cleaned the kitchen, the bathroom, the spare bedroom and washed the floors.

Oh yea, I also went upstairs and went through my drawers getting rid of things I never wear. Went through three Rubbermaid tubs filled with all of mom's pictures, condensing them into one.

I made Enchilada's for dinner and I am almost sure that I am forgetting something!

So now I am settled in for the evening and am reading blogs. And what do I come across? My friend Lynilu from " Never  Ending Journey " posted about it being "National No Housework Day"! 

I wish I would have known this sooner as I would have sat on my butt all day doing nothing, Yea right!

Oh well what's done is done. I guess I will continue to read Lyn's blog as I do enjoy it. I just hope that next year she might post about this holiday "EARLY IN THE MORNING!". 

I hope that some of you were able to take advantage of this holiday, I certainly didn't!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

" Just a Quickie "

This is just a quickie post this evening. I can't believe that it's only Tuesday. I feel as though I've been priming theses walls forever.

This is exactly what I have been doing on and off for over a week. Unfortunately I am not as young and skinny as the above woman and my knees and hands are killing me! Arthritis ain't for sissies!

It took two coats on all of the walls but I am done. I so much want to start putting the color on the walls, which by the way, is top secret! But I do have another house to clean this week besides my own and would like to be able to walk this weekend when my husband comes home.

I have also neglected quite a bit of yard work but I just can't do it all by myself any more. I went to the doctor last week and he didn't like my numbers so he doubled my B.P. and Cholesterol medications, yippie ! Also he wants me to have a blood test for RA. I have never been tested for it and because my arthritis is so bad, he wants to make sure. He said that if it were RA, there are other medications that I could try.

I'm just going along with the program. Jake says I do too much but it hurts all the time so what difference does it make if I sit in pain or move in pain? Besides you only go around once and my house has to be clean before I can die!

I'm sorry, I'm not trying to sound morbid I'm just exhausted.

So I will leave you all for now. And I will try to be a good girl for awhile and take it easy. Although I may take my bike for another spin in the morning!

Love to you all, have a good evening!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

" Retro Weekend "

This weeks "Retro Weekend" is a bit bittersweet for me. I've had it planned now for several weeks but had no idea that the closer it got to Easter, the harder this post would be for me to do.

You see this Easter Sunday is also my first born son's birthday. Frank was born on April 4th 1978. The hard part about this post is that it is the first birthday for him that his Grandma Ann won't be with him.

Frank was four years old in the above photo. That shirt was the very first article of clothing that he ever picked out on his own. We found it at J.C. Penny and he just had to have it. Look at those beautiful blue eyes!

Frank was always a good boy. Oh you know he'd get into little fights with his little sister here and there but really he was a good, good boy.

I had such a difficult time choosing photos of him. There were so many. Frank had a habit of just nodding off in the strangest places. One time it was on a neighbors porch, another time it was under a table. I think I took lots of photos of him sleeping!

Franks son Jack looks so much like he did as a boy. I only wish for his son to be as good a son to him as Frank was to me. He rarely gave me a problem and almost always did as I told him to do, unlike his two sisters. Girls can be trouble!

My son is and always was a hard worker. I am proud to say that he has worked and paid for everything that he's ever had including his first truck at the age of 17. He eventually ended up selling it for a profit! He has owned several vehicles since and owned two homes. Mom was always so proud of him. Every time he bought a newer vehicle mom would ooh and awe over it!

Frank met his wife Amy in high school. I remember this day vividly. It was senior prom 1996 and I said to my son "This will probably be the last time I see you in a tux until you get married!". Little did I know then that was the truth! And mom was there for all of the dances and all of the graduations. She was always there.

The next major event in my son's life was his and Amy's wedding day. Mom was there for that too. Frank is a handy guy and my husband taught him to never be afraid to try something new. Frank has learned how to fix many things over the years. He is a lot like me in many ways. One of which is that he has trouble sitting still!

This picture was taken on Jacks birthday. Almost two years ago. I am thankful that mom was there for both Jack and Sarah's birthdays. 

Frank was very close to his Grandma Ann. He would often help her around her house with things that needed to be fixed, even when he was busy.
This will be our first Easter without mom and Frank's first birthday without her here with us. He won't say anything. But I know that he will be remembering her as I am now. 

For me tomorrow is going to be a tough day. Mom loved Easter. I do too but this year I just don't feel it. But I will do as my mom would do, put on a happy face and be thankful for my beautiful family. 
Happy Birthday my beautiful son.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

" And So It Begins "

Spring has definitely sprung here in Southern Illinois. It was 82 degrees and sunny. Too warm for me! Yes you heard me right, I like temperatures in the 70's, and that's all I have to say on the subject!
This is the view looking up from my mother's chair in my yard. You can see the maple tree trying her best to fill out.

 I did way too much work the past three days and I'm paying for it now. No pity please. Arthritis is a terrible thing to have but there isn't much we can do other than shots or sitting and not doing a thing. I choose not to sit so it is my pain to bear.

Here is a picture of my "Good" hand, although it has been riddled with arthritis longer than the other...
And now a picture of the "Bad" hand. Notice the knuckles on the two middle fingers....

Yesterday as I was up on the ladder painting the trim around the ceiling, my knee locked up and I sort of got stuck! So I said "Please Lord help me get down off this ladder and I promise I will stay off of it for at least one whole day!".
I made it down with much pain and then I quit! Everything hurts, back,hips,knees,feet and hands. That is all of the places where I have Arthritis!

Sitting still is very difficult for me. So when I woke up this morning I decided to take a ride to Lowe's to see if they had any purple Petunia's yet. I want purple Petunia's for my hanging planters for the front porch. I do different plants every year. This year, purple petunia's!

And so it begins. The time of year when I spend every extra penny I have on flowers, dirt, mulch and seeds. My husband never says a word. And that surprises me every year!

This is my trunk. I bought 12 purple Petunia's and 2 white one's just to mix it up a bit. Then I remembered that I needed dirt and coconut shells for the planters.

Also a package of Sunflower seeds and Pumpkin seeds. I have grown pumpkins twice and had pretty good results. It's all about location,location,location!

So now I have this Forsythia dilemma. I have noticed that some people keep their Forsythia bushes trimmed neatly.....
While others go for the wild look....

These are photos I took while Katie was driving to her friends house today. I actually made her pull over and stop! Jackie would be so proud! Anyway I couldn't decide which way I was going to go with my little Forsythia bush which looks like this....

I know, I know, it does look sort of puny doesn't it? But it's only two years old and I am sure it will get much bigger. 

I asked Katie which way she thought we should let our little bush grow. She said that she liked the......
wild way as do I. Truthfully I don't think she really cared and was just trying to shut me up so that she could get to her friends house quicker! But that's alright as in my heart I really already knew how I wanted the little bush to grow.

And really it already does look pretty wild as I haven't trimmed it....
And now I don't have to. Dilemma settled! As it grows much bigger over the years, it will make my husband happy as there will be less to mow!

Hey now, could it possibly, no it couldn't be.... 

could it ?

maybe that's why he never complains when I plant so many plants. It's less for him to mow!!!