- The weather the last couple of days has been absolutely gorgeous.
- I took advantage of the nice weather to finish my fall cleaning and wash windows.
- The autumn colors have reached their peak.
- I love the home renovation shows and I am starting a project on a much smaller scale turning my daughter’s old bedroom into my office. I removed all the trim board and applied the first coat of paint. I’m grateful my husband and I are willing to take on projects and finish them even though we don’t know what we are doing. There has never been an easier time to learn.
- Breakfast with my best friend at a new restaurant.
- I was able to visit with all my kids this past week.
- Angel came for a visit and brought over cinnamon bread she made with the bread machine which was a wedding gift.
- Paul’s homemade pizza.
- Fall campfires.
- Variety, change of seasons, and getting out my winter clothes. Warm fuzzy sweaters are the best!
Adventures in sailing
We spent last week sailing Door County on a cruise with a couple of other sailboats. Door County is located on the thumb of Wisconsin and is a very popular tourist destination. We ended our trip right before Labor Day weekend because on a holiday weekend slips are harder to come by with multiple boats. But the week before they are generally plentiful.
The cruise started off a little rough. Paul and I decided to go to the boat early because the forecast was showing hot and humid weather conditions. We thought we could get everything ready and then hit the pool before everyone else showed up. It didn’t quite turn out as planned. When we got there a pop up storm came through and it was cool and rainy. The other couple that was planning to sail with us weren’t sure they were going to go with because she was feeling sick and wanted to get tested for COVID.
The following day we sailed through the wind and the waves reaching our destination just before another round of storms hit. I was in a foul mood as well. Along with getting whipped around on the boat, I was suffering through cramps and arthritis pain. Not a good mix. To add to that, my body does not tolerate beer, burgers, and pizza well. You know, pretty much all the fun vacation foods and drinks. So, I had to deal with indigestion and acid re-flux as well. I topped all that off with my usual insomnia.
By the third day, the other couple joined us. Our friend did not have COVID. Instead she was put on antibiotics for an infection but overall was feeling a lot better. From there we sailed to Sister Bay under strong winds and high waves. It was not a very comfortable sail. We decided to stay in Sister Bay for a couple days and visit some of the shops.
For breakfast one morning, we ate at Al Johnsons the place with the goats on the roof. It is a Swedish restaurant with an adjoining gift shop which we visited as we waited to get a table. According to my DNA results, I am a large percent Swedish. I traced my genealogy back as far as I could go on all sides without finding an ancestor from Sweden. So I ascertained I have Viking blood which explains so much as far as my temperament goes.
When we walked by later, there were people on the roof with the goats. None of us have ever seen people on the roof before. I sent the photo to several people and regretted sending it to my son who thought it was pretty cool. I pictured Alex and his friends trying to get up on the roof some time. Alex’s girlfriend commented asking what would happen if they fell. I said if the people fell off they were pretty screwed with broken legs and necks. If the goats fell off, then goat curry. Honestly, though, Al Johnsons is not like Red Lobster. They don’t have goat on the menu.
The wind and waves were pretty strong most of our trip. At Sister Bay waves crashed over the breakwater. I tried to take videos of people getting doused but every time I brought out my camera it tamed the wicked seas. We sailed to another harbor but that was pretty much uneventful. Then we took advantage of the one day with no wind or waves at all to motor back to our home port before the onset of more strong winds, waves, and storms.
The most enjoyable part of the trip back was having multiple monarch butterflies follow our boat. It’s hard to understand how such a small insect can fly so far from shore. Even though the trip started off rough, it ended on a good note. It’s hard to believe just like that summer is pretty much over. All the things we had planned came into fruition. I’m happy we were able to do so many fun adventures, but I’m sad to see summer slip away.
Gratitude week 122
- It’s May!! March and April were difficult months weather wise with cold, windy, and rainy/icy/snowy weather most days. We even had snow a couple days ago. It been a very wet wintry spring, but it might warm up a bit by next weekend…
- I’m pretty much done with my spring cleaning. This past week I washed the windows and put on the screens. Now I’m just waiting for spring.
- I got my 1st birthday video back. It was neat to watch, however a 50 mm film translates into about 3 or 4 minutes of video without audio. I was hoping for something longer with more family in it besides me and a short clip with my mom. Oh well! My grandma had a tradition where bread, a book, and money were placed in front of a baby at their first birthday. I have video proof that I picked the bread which supposedly means I will never go hungry…but my husband said maybe I am smart because I actually picked the only edible object. LOL
- I met my husband’s therapist this week.
- I was able to spend time with all my kids this week.
- My brother Luke called me to vent. He rarely does that, so I am grateful for the call to talk.
- I’m grateful to have our best friends over for Paul’s homemade pizza and swimming.
- The neighborhood had rummage sales going on, so yesterday Paul and I went to check it out. I bought some of my favorite things to buy…clothes, puzzles, books, and candles. Next weekend we are planning on going out rummaging again..
- Clean sheets.
- I was able to work on my book.
- The finale of Ozark is out.
Gratitude week 120
- Easter! We attended services at our new church then had a wonderful time with family celebrating at my daughter Angel’s house. This was the first time one of my children hosted a holiday. I have to admit it was kind of nice just to show up with a dish to pass and relax. We spent the afternoon playing games and went outside for awhile, although it was cold it wasn’t raining or snowing.
- We had another week of rain, snow, sleet, and ice. It’s been snowing all day, but…it looks like some warm weather might be headed our way finally. I’m hoping that by next week I can tell you we had a nice sunny day near 60 degrees.
- With all the stormy weather, my parents and Arabella went up to the family cabin to check on how it was holding up. My dad ended up getting stuck in the mud in the driveway. They ended up sitting in the car for 7 hours because the cabin does not have heat or water waiting for a tow truck that never came. I’m grateful that Paul was willing to pick them up at midnight so they wouldn’t have to spend the night in their car. It involved two and a half hours of driving through stormy wintry weather.
- I’m grateful that Arabella found an apartment 10 minutes from our house and will be moving in some time in May. She came over for a visit overnight and we are all still getting along.
- I’m grateful that my daughter Angel had a good meeting with her boss today and got a raise.
- I’m grateful for the date day I spent with Paul. We did some shopping, went out to eat with a gift card we got eons ago, and went to the thrift store to get a costume for a murder mystery party we are hosting this weekend.
- I really scored at the thrift store. I found another murder mystery game. Those are rare finds. I am excited about the last game I found at the thrift store which we will be playing this weekend. The best part is that I have a tape player to play some of the clues on. I also found two boxes of hot pink taper candles.
- Paul and I went through our clothes and donated four big boxes to the thrift store.
- I also cleaned out our garage and found a video from my 1st birthday which I want to put in digital format. The strange part is that my grandparents are a little older than I am right now on that video so it will be really cool to see them close to my age since I look a lot like my grandma. That is the oldest family recording I have in my possession. I’ve never seen it before.
- I also spearheaded the cleaning of the garage apartment. It was priceless seeing my son on his hands and knees cleaning out the refrigerator. With all the cleaning efforts in my house and the apartment, I had two large dumpster loads of recycling and garbage.
- Paul and I also went to the recycling center and got rid of an old TV, several monitors, the microwave that started on fire, and an old air conditioner unit that was in the garage when we moved in. I would have to say this has been one of the biggest spring cleaning efforts ever and it felt great.
- One of the other things we have been doing is making a big effort to start eating all the food we have in our freezer. With grocery prices skyrocketing, it’s nice to be able to clean out the freezer.
- Dan celebrated his birthday this past weekend. Soon he will be my SIL. It was nice they invited Alex and Lexi out to celebrate with them. It’s always great when my kids get along and have fun together without my prompting. I’m grateful for Dan and am excited to have him be part of our family soon.
Gratitude week 117
- I am grateful for the friendships I’ve made on WP. It means so much to me to be a part of a supportive community as I tell my story and to share the joys and struggles along with other people all around the world as I hear your stories.
- Today when I woke up, the sun was shining for the first time in a week. It still is cold out with no foreseeable end in sight…but for now the rain and snow ended.
- We’ve had a couple of fires inside this week to stay warm. I guess that’s one thing I’m grateful for with the cold weather. I miss having fires inside in the summer.
- My tattoo is healing nicely.
- My best friend and I went out to eat for the first time this calendar year. I’m grateful to have a best friend who always checks in on me.
- I went out to eat with my brother Matt for his birthday. A couple weeks back I found a record for him at the antique store of Close Encounters of the Third Kind. My brother was obsessed with that movie when we were kids, so I was excited to find it for him.
- My husband made his famous homemade pizza and we had Arabella and Will over for supper and Mahjong.
- Paul and I had a date night on Friday night. We went out for sushi and had tickets to see a comedian. We did a lot of laughing, probably too much laughing because things were going too good. After the show, we walked back to my car. The winds were whipping rather fiercely and the snow was falling. We got back to my car and noticed I had a flat tire. We also found out that I do not have a spare tire. Seriously?? Why? Was it because I let my guard down and was having too much fun??
- Thank God I have a good sense of humor.
- While we were at the sushi restaurant, I saw something on TV about a store that sells records and realized we were only a block away. So…since we went out to eat really early as not to miss the show, we had some extra time…I ended up buying three new records; Pink Floyd’s The Wall, Prince’s Purple Rain, and Kraftwerk’s Radioactivity.
- Last night Angel and our employee James (the only one who still works for our previous business and who does some work for us now) came over for beer sampling, pizza, and to watch the Bucks game. James is the only employee who worked for us that we are still in touch with. He is pretty much an honorary family member now.
- Angel’s fiancé Dan came home very early this morning after spending a couple weeks out of state for work.
- It was nice to have a really busy week so I could forget how miserable the weather is. Spring is coming, I know it is…
Gratitude week 74
- My daughter Arabella graduated!!!!!!!!!!
- We were able to go to the graduation in person! I will never complain about how boring a graduation is again either. My son’s high school graduation was very boring. But because of the pandemic my daughter Angel never had an in person college graduation and I really missed the opportunity to celebrate with her. Never again will I complain about a graduation being boring. At this point, there aren’t any more graduations for my kids in the near future. My baby graduated from high school.
- Paul was on the local news station talking about our business which was really exciting. We didn’t know when it was going to air so we constantly watched the news the last couple days. I probably watched the news more in the past couple of days than when COVID just came out. LOL
- I started doing crunches starting on May 1st. I wanted to see if it made a difference in my waist line. I lost 3 1/2 inches. So I am almost ready for my summer bikini bod. I guess it is worth it.
- Angel and I started running outside together. It’s great to share a hobby with family.
- Angel and I also went thrifting and out to eat for pizza over the weekend. No great finds for me but Angel was able to find some materials for her crafting business.
- We are opening up the summer cabin this week and I am looking forward to spending a couple of days just relaxing on the beach. It’s been a cold Memorial weekend this year. We had low temps in the upper 30’s, but by the end of the week we will have highs near 90. You never know what you are going to get around here.
- I’m grateful for those who gave their lives for our freedom and also for those who are serving in our military to protect us today.
- I’m thankful for the flowers I bought from my Uncle Rick’s greenhouse. Something about flowers and greenery makes me feel almost happy. But I will have to start pulling the weeds today.
- I almost forgot. This past week was my 6 year blogging anniversary. I’m pretty happy I kept with it. So I guess you are stuck with me and my stories.
Gratitude week 70
- And just like that, April is over and we are one step closer to summer.
- Last night I had a long honest conversation with my mom and I think it helped us both in our healing process.
- After the heavy conversation, my mom, husband, son, daughter Angel, and I played Jackbox games online. We laughed a lot and everyone got along better than they had in a long time.
- Although this week is starting off cool and rainy, it was nice to have a few warm weather days over the weekend to get outside and enjoy the nice weather.
- I’m grateful for rummage sales in the summer. My mom and I went to a couple over the weekend. My big score was finding a boxing bag stand. My son has had a boxing bag for over a year without a stand which is basically useless. So now he has a stand for it. Guess who bought some boxing gloves? Yup, me!
- I had an appointment with my therapist this past week and she thinks that having my mom live with us for awhile would be a good opportunity for growth and healing for me.
- I’m grateful to go out for lunch with my best friend and go dress shopping for our children’s graduation from high school. We both found our dresses 15 minutes before the store closed.
- I’m grateful that Paul is doing a great job at his new job. We went out on Friday night with the people in his office to celebrate.
- I’m grateful that my daughter Arabella will be graduating at the end of the month.
- My new car has been absolutely naked without bumper stickers. I’m grateful to have found one that I like. It says something along the lines of ‘trying to decide if I am a warning or an example in today’s world’. Seemed kind of funny.
- My husband and I were cleaning out Arabella’s frog cage and one of her frogs got away. He wedged himself into a crack under the bottom of the sink. Thankfully Paul was able to pull him out before he got trapped and died back there. It was a moment of sheer panic though.
Gratitude week 63
- There was one I forgot from last week. Before my daughter went into residential, she had her dental exam. With her asking for her new toothbrush in advance so she could brush in the bathroom right before her appointment and her candy bingeing, I was a little worried about what they might find. Not only that, but she was having some dental pain with her wisdom teeth. The dentist said that she didn’t have any cavities AND so far all of her wisdom teeth are coming in like they should. So it’s looking good that she won’t need wisdom teeth extraction. I didn’t even know that was possible! LOL!! On a side note, I’m sure my daughter Angel will be upset to hear that. She is my only kid that brushes and flosses probably more than I do. Her siblings always did the bare minimum and she always ended up with the cavities. It always made her mad when the dentist told her to brush and floss more and told her siblings to keep up what they are doing.
- Talking about Angel, she is coming back home today until she finds her own place!! Her boyfriend Dan came down with COVID a couple weeks back while she was visiting him at his parents house. They all holed up in quarantine there. Dan got really sick. My daughter and his mom got sick too, but his dad who we were all worried about ended up being just fine. They were sick for a good week and a half. It even went away for a day or two and came back with a vengeance. I’m grateful that they all have returned to health and that my daughter is coming back home!
- I’m grateful for the warm and a few rainy days that pretty much decimated all of our snow. I’m ready for spring although there is a chance for more snow this week…
- I’m glad that our first telehealth meeting with Arabella’s therapist at residential went really well.
- I’m grateful for some time for me to get my hair and nails done. I even decided to color my hair again and went a little darker. It must seem natural as no one really noticed it yet except Angel when I was facetiming her.
- I had my success story interview with the wellness clinic this week. It went pretty good. I’m going to be my worst critic, this I know. The lady that interviewed me was very nice. She said that I was beautiful and could be a motivational speaker. I was excited for the opportunity but it was rather terrifying and I did lose a little sleep over it. Now my husband is going to the wellness clinic.
- I’m grateful for the visit from my best friend. She made some deviled eggs for me and left them here for me to eat.
- Since the weather was nice yesterday, I’m grateful that I was able to go for a run outside without being too cold.
- I’m grateful that my son found his lost wallet.
- I’m grateful that I can start spending time with my mom again since she is fully vaccinated.
Gratitude week 27
- Summer!! We’ve had a bit of a heat wave here in Wisconsin. It’s been in the 90’s for over a week. Typically we are lucky (if you like it hot like I do) to have one or two days a year that hot. I finally broke down and turned on the A/C.
- I have one less teenager in the house. I went from 4 teenagers this year down to one. Our exchange student from France, Estelle, went back home this last week. Now I am not grateful or happy about this, BUT Estelle and my daughter Arabella started out as best friends and left not even speaking to each other. It was difficult because Estelle wanted to do everything with me and Arabella wants nothing to do with me. So I am hoping for less stress now that she is gone.
- I am grateful to keep busy so I am not depressed about Estelle leaving. My birthday is next week and I have some fun things planned that I enjoy.
- My daughter came home this past weekend. Paul and I had a great time with our son Alex and our daughter Angel and her boyfriend Dan sailing and swimming.
- I feel grateful I am able to get away more now that the responsibility of having foreign exchange students is over.
- Paul taught me almost everything I needed to know about sailing over this weekend. This is wonderful because I need to know how to run the boat if something happens to him.
- After being gone the last four days I am grateful to be back home.
- I am grateful for my faithful followers and I can’t wait to share more of my story.
- I am grateful we didn’t run into any storms while we were out sailing. With the heat and humidity the weather has been volatile.
- I am grateful to have a supportive husband even if it means writing about him.
Gratitude week 20
I’ve been struggling a lot lately, so at this point having a weekly gratitude list is probably more important. I have to remind myself of the good things that are happening in my life.
The wellness nurse put me on a liquid diet over the weekend to try to calm my gut. I lost 7 lbs over the weekend. I haven’t been feeling well and I’ve been weak and tired to boot. It takes the energy of a 5k just for me to put the clothes from the washer into the dryer. Sometimes I have to take a rest after doing nothing.
This past weekend I packed up all of my running gear and put it in another room. It’s a painful reminder of what I cannot do. I haven’t cancelled the 50k I was planning on doing with my cousin late summer. Maybe, a miracle…
It’s been hard because I’ve always been a go go go person, type A all the way. I’ve really been trying to hide from the world how sick I am. It’s been pretty easy to do with this virus. I want people to remember me as strong and healthy. I feel so discouraged because what I once was no longer is.
To make matters worse, the weather hasn’t been cooperating here in Wisconsin. We had snow flurries on Mother’s Day and record low temps this past week. Since yesterday it has been very cold with temps struggling to reach 50 degrees. It’s also been very windy and by the end of the day we are supposed to have a total of 3 inches of rainfall from the last couple days of rain. Everything is flooded. The weather guy keeps saying every week since the beginning of April that the following week will be nice but it never is. I really hope that the weather makes my gratitude list next week.
Here is my list for this week:
- My daughter Angel made a surprise visit home this past weekend. She hasn’t been home in over two months. It was very comforting to have her around when I wasn’t feeling well.
- My baby Arabella turned 17 this past weekend. She ended up having a nicer day than she thought she would.
- Since Angel got a nice job, she decided to lease a vehicle and gave us back our old car for Arabella. Although the car is older than she is, Arabella now has a car. It was nice to see her all excited about it and take the time to vacuum and care for it. Now Arabella doesn’t have to borrow my car for school or work. I will not have to drop her off or pick her up anymore which will be less stress on me.
- Today I can eat something besides bone broth. Yeah!
- I talked to Paul’s friend who has colitis and got a lot of advice from him. It does feel good to know I am not alone in this despite the fact I wouldn’t wish this on anyone.
- I had good appointments with the wellness nurse, counselor, and mentor this past week. I am making progress on my healing although at times it doesn’t feel like it.
- Estelle found her lost Nintendo Switch. I was very worried once it went missing that it was stolen.
- I got my new t-shirt in the mail.
- Paul put our sailboat in the water last week. With all of the wind and rain it hasn’t been sunk, damaged, destroyed, or cast away yet.
- My aunt tested negative for Covid. Yeah, it’s only pneumonia! Seriously though, my uncle has lung issues and they were around other older family members with health issues. So it is a good thing. I was worried that the coronavirus might wipe out several of my family members.