Sunday, January 26, 2014

Life is interesting

This past week brought us a few surprises.  Tuesday Bud developed a little rash on his back and asked me to put some lotion on it.  Wednesday morning the rash had spread a bit and he was beginning to wonder if it was Shingles.  He went to the 'walk in clinic' right away that morning because he couldn't get in to his regular doctor.  They confirmed the diagnosis and gave him a medication to help with the virus, hoping they caught it early.  He went to work both Thursday and Friday but by Friday afternoon he was feeling a little 'punky' so we didn't go out to an event that we had planned that evening.  He decided to just stay in this weekend and try to recover.  He has been sleeping and continues to feel 'under the weather'.  I stopped by his sister's house this afternoon (she is a dermatologist) and she is going to make a house call later.  He is restless and in some pain and mostly just tired of laying around already.  
 I have been continuing my O.T. on my wrist and am able to be around the house without the brace.  I am doing many exercises and am able to do some strengthening exercises so it is getting better.  I still don't have full range of motion and it is very stiff but I have been able to do some sewing so that is better.  I have been blessed with some very good books to read the last couple of weeks so that has been helpful.  I have also been going back to Kingsley to help at the school so that is nice.

I did get new tires on my car this week so I was ready for another trip to Coleman. I drove down on Thursday evening.  Leo fixed me Swiss Steak for dinner, following Mom's recipe.  I don't ever fix it here so I told him I would bring the steak if he would fix it for me.  It tasted very good.
Friday we went to a doctor's appointment.  It was a 6 month check up with his pulmonologist, we have another appointment this next week with his oncologist.  The drive down was uneventful.  I beat the worst of the storm when I came back in the afternoon.  It was windy but not too bad. On our way home from Midland I noticed that the snow seemed to be blowing across the east-west roads so I thought the drive home on mostly north-south roads would be fine.  Leo told me this story about the snow blowing in N. Dakota.  He said that it really didn't seem to matter which direction you were driving, the snow always seems to be blowing across the road.  I was lucky that I beat most of the snow and blowing.  My new tires were helpful too.
On my way home I talked to Glen in N. Dakota.  The weather was in the mid 30s on Friday.  but it had been about 30 below zero the day before.  He called me again today and said it was cold, snowy and blowing out there today.  And we think that Michigan weather is unpredictable.
HEY, I am listening to NPR on the radio and they just finished a little promotion about N. Dakota.  They are planning to do a week long story on the oil boom there.  I guess that N. Dakota is the place to be.  You must be a tough person to tough out their weather though.  I think I will still stay in Michigan and visit N. Dakota in the summer.
I have an exciting thing happening in my life.  Two of my small landscape quilts will be in a local show.  This is a picture of the postcard advertisement.  As you can see it is an 'Invitational' quilt show.  Now,  just to be clear, it is just a local show but I do feel privileged to be a part of this show.  I have put prices on my pieces but won't be shocked if nothing sells.  I am OK with that.  I really have never planned to make my hobby in to a profit making business and probably don't want to know the real cost of any piece I make if you factor in the labor and materials.  This piece pictured above is just part of the whole piece but it is one of my experiments.  I was very pleased with the way it turned out.  If you want to see more of the piece, you can go back through earlier posts and check it out.  I am just thankful that my wrist is getting stronger and I am able to get back to sewing.

WELL,  I guess that was a bit of a lengthy post.  I really didn't mean to ramble on and on.  AND, I hope you forgive the title of the post. It probably wasn't that interesting.

Stay warm and think nice thoughts of beautiful summer days.  We received our advertisement for the State Dock houseboat trips in the mail this past week.  That is something to look forward to on these cold winter days.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Birthday Boy part 2

Saturday we drove to Coleman to celebrate Leo's birthday.  The weather finally cooperated and we were able to make the trip.  We tried the previous weekend but it was just too snowy to take off on the roads.  Bud and I stopped on the way down to order some new tables in Clare at an unfinished furniture store.  We are slowly finishing the decorating of our living room.  
 I took some soup and bread and deviled eggs down for lunch.  We invited Braden and Denise over for lunch.  Leo put some leaves in the table and Eva brought some folding chairs over so we were all able to sit around the table and chat.  Denise brought apple pie so it was a great lunch.
Of course we had to give him some cards to remind him that he is getting older.
 Eva, Bud and I bought him some bathroom towel sets.  He needed some place to put towels and the toilet paper roll.  Bachelors really don't need things like that but sisters think they do and if sisters didn't get them the bachelors might go a long time without them
 On our way home, right down the road from his driveway, we saw this flock of turkeys in the road.
we had to stop and urge them to get out of the road.  Leo says that he has lots of wildlife in his yard, both turkeys and deer.  It is a beautiful setting.
I couldn't post something this week without sharing with you our snowfall .  We already had our January thaw and are now back collecting snow.  This past week the snowplow company came and pushed back the snow in our driveway.  The used a front end loader and piled it up away from the driveway.  We were rapidly losing our turn around area and they were beginning to run out of places to put the snow so this was probably a good idea.

So there you go, the fun activity of the weekend and a weather report from up north.  What more could you want?  I would give you more but that is really all I have.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

My Baby Brother has a Birthday

January 13, 1956 my baby brother was born.  
He was named after his two grandfathers, Leo from his grandfather on his father's side and Hal from his grandfather on his mother's side.  The baby of our family.
Here he is on his first day of school in 1961.  I think that barn lunch pail is still around somewhere.  

 Basketball was his high school sport.  Don't you think those short shorts look so cute.
This is my favorite picture of him.  He and Josh spent a lot of time on that old John Deere tractor several summers.

This past year has been a long one for Leo but we made it through it together.  I feel privileged to have spent this past year beside him and blessed that we had such a good outcome.  Year 57 was difficult but I am hoping that year 58 will be better.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

LOTS of Christmas pictures

It all began with the tradition of frosting cookies.
 Gram loves this tradition and so do the girls.
 Such concentration.
 What a beauty.  She is growing up.
 A careful worker.
 LOTS of fun.
 Doug and his helper put up the gate over the downstairs  in preparation for the babies.
 B. was the first one to win the heart of the twins.
 Daddy watched over them carefully.
 Christmas morning for us started with H. reading Gram's bible and the Christmas story.
 Jessica made a beautiful and creative book for Sofi and Isak.  She is so talented.,
 Doug and Jess are thinking of how their lives will be changed this next year.
 An apron
 B. won over the babies first.
 Gram was reminded that Tennessee is important.
 Jess got a new tent.  It holds 6 so there is room for expansion in that family.
 Every child needs a farm set.
 The 'mother to be' is watching
 New shoes
 New boots
 Doug gets the 'puzzle' clues this year for a surprise gift.  He was fast at solving the puzzle.
 We all had fun watching him solve his clues.  We were anxiously waiting this surprise gift.
 It came in a DeWalt box so it had to be good. He now has a new planer.  He has always wanted one of his own so Matt set out to make it happen.
 The driveway needed to be cleared so Matt was up to the afternoon taxk.
 Gram played with the toys and the babies.
 Leo drove over and joined us for the afternoon.
 It warmed up enough to take off jackets and the driveway was cleared of snow.
 Gram was happy with all of her grandchildren  around her.
 A family photo is hard to take when you have babies.
 We tried hard.
 Matt's birthday celebration that evening.
 AND another DeWalt box.  He was thrilled.
 Gram was thrilled too because Isak let her hold him.
 Two sisters together.  It had been a while since they had both been home.
 Sunday we went up to the Powers' lodge for a fun day in the snow.  Isak got a little nourishment before heading out to the hill.
 Bundled up for the snow hill.
 Sofi and Sara are ready too.
 Off they go on their first snowmobile ride.
 Isak and Daddy are checking out the hill.
 B. is ready to go.  She loves sledding AND the ride back up the hill on the snowmobile.
 SO, what do you think?  Should we try to go down the hill?
Everyone was having fun.
 Sara had her hands full.

 Isak and Leo are ready for their first ride.
 Jess and Della didn't go down the hill. I didn't want to risk it with my broken arm and Jess was keeping L.P safe.
 Gram's smile says it all. She is having fun.
 Sofi went down too but not by herself like this picture suggests.  I think someone was pulling her in this picture.
 We took a couple more group shots. 
 What a beautiful day.  It was perfect and full of wonderful memories.  
 Aunt Jess has her special time.
 Isak tries out hot chocolate.  
 Sofi wants some too.  
 B. has the touch with the babies.  She was the only one that both of them would go to.  
 We got all the grandchildren in one picture. 
 We had to include a couple of new baby outfits for the new baby since we found out it would be a girl. 
 Gram bought babies first bathing suit.  I think it will look cute on our first houseboat trip.  
We even had a chance to play Mexican Train one night.  Look at Bud's shirt.  It is a reflective shirt so it looks a little strange in pictures.

YES, YES, we had a wonderful time at Eva's house.  I am so thankful for such a wonderful family and the opportunity to spend the holidays with them.

You have really accomplished something if you made it through this whole post and all the pictures.