Be All Here…

I walked down the driveway, my dog pulling on his leash desperate to run through the emerald green grass, spotted with golden dandelions. I stopped for a moment to look back over my shoulder. The house sets in what used to be a field, blue sky as it’s backdrop. Chickens pecking at the ground, the horse grazing in the pasture, and the outdoor dogs laying lazily in the sun. The picture resembled something from a Norman Rockwell painting.


Do you ever have moments that seem to stand still? That is the time I experienced, ever so briefly, this morning.

How often do I rush through my days? And miss it all? And, why? Why do I do that?

Slow down. Breathe. Be all here.

I have to constantly remind myself of this. Over and over again. You’d think I’d remember, that I’d “get” it, once and for all.

But, I forget time and time again.

Memorizing this moment. Tucking it away.

Knowing just how blessed I really am.


A Saturday In Spring










Good morning, sunshine!

The view from my kitchen window always makes me smile.










The start of a new day…











I love to watch the neighbor’s llamas, across the road.

Shortly, there will be babies running around, that resemble cotton balls with legs.











Salem kitty is on the prowl.

She doesn’t like her picture taken, but she tolerates me chasing her around the yard until I get one!











Ace, you goober head!

You cannot lay in what will soon be my flower bed.











Jazz watches me from afar.

She’s usually curious about what is going on around the house.











These are the newest members of our family.

Ten chicks. Typical babies…they eat, sleep, and poop.











The neighbor’s barn. Doesn’t it look picturesque?

My family’s barn is metal and doesn’t have quite the same “Norman Rockwell” appeal to me, as this one.











Spring is busting out all over!











Necessary during the spring months, around here.











….and I took the one less traveled by….and it has made all the difference.


Get Your Motor Runnin’

Yard Sale Northern California May 2005. This i...

Image via Wikipedia

Saturday morning a little after 8 o’clock in the morning, my son, daughter and I jumped in the van. We were yard sale bound….

First stop, an estate sale way out in the country. It was a beautiful drive, dotted with picturesque white farm houses with multiple red barns, pure Norman Rockwell. We pulled up to the house and jumped out. Hmmm….some stuff was way overpriced if you ask me. There were some nice furniture pieces, but I wasn’t really there for furniture. I didn’t really have any idea what I WAS looking for, but I knew that I’d know it when I saw it. That is my motto. There was also a barn with all sorts of stuff in it. I found 4 school cafeteria trays for a couple of bucks. The melamine kind with the square places for each type of food. So, old school (literally!). My kids looked at me as if I were I was nuts. Like that has ever stopped me. I was thinking they would make wonderful TV trays and the kids were having flashbacks of women wearing hairnets, spooning mystery meat on a plate. Whatever. To each his own.

At this home I also found a cute wooden school chair……child size. I cleaned it up and put it in my library with one of my Boyds bears sitting on it. Perfect.

Next stop, a garage sale. WAY overpriced. If I want to spend that much money I’ll just go to a store and buy it new. The few exceptions to this were some nice vintage embroidered table cloths, pillow shams, and dressy scarves. The lady said she has so many, she was just wanting to thin out her collection. I snagged  some vintage, for a dollar a piece and got a silk scarf for my daughter. Oh, I also found a beautiful framed picture of a young Victorian girl. I wonder whose daughter she was? I always find antique pictures intriguing.

After a couple more stops to pick up a hand held electronic chess game for my daughter, a huge hot chocolate mug, and a Michael Buble’ Christmas CD…..the morning was over.

Even though my son didn’t find anything he wanted today, he enjoyed the hunt. (and getting to drive)

Time to head back home.

Until next time…



Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

Red Barn and Blue Sky

Image by cindy47452 via Flickr

Good Morning, so glad you came to visit. I love having company. Would you like a mug of coffee on this chilly, gray day? Yes? Just pull up a stool at the kitchen counter. Let’s talk……

I really enjoy getting to know my “bloggy” friends. I know that if we all lived closer together, this scene really would take place. I have readers from all over the world and we are each different…yet, we have so many characteristics that are the same. Many people think that the internet is “evil”…and let’s face it, it can be if that is what one is looking for. I choose to use the internet to “talk” with my neighbors….to share more of myself, in hopes that they can also see themselves in my stories. It makes us all feel a little bit closer.

Mmmm…..the coffee is especially good this morning. You want another cup? What flavor creamer? My mom and husband both tell me I need to learn to drink it, straight up, black. I say, why waste good creamer? There is nothing wrong with french vanilla or cinnamon swirl. Right?

This morning I’ve already been practicing my lines for the “Mary” monologue that I am doing tonight, at my church’s Good Friday service. Friends, would you remember me, that the words I speak would not be my own…but, that those listening tonight would hear the words of Mary and realize how much Jesus loves them?

I know it’s a gray day outside. This morning when I walked the dog, the wind was starting to pick up. A storm is obviously on the way. That is the Midwest for you…not quite ready for Spring yet. Gray clouds scud across the sky. Hey, why don’t you look out my front kitchen window? Doesn’t the farm across the road look like something out of a Norman Rockwell picture?  A red barn in the middle of an open field. I really enjoy my view. I like the wide open spaces that the country allows. Maybe, after the rain we can go for a walk? We can visit Jazz, my daughter’s horse, in the barn. The dogs would love to go for a walk with us. The llamas across the road will lift up their heads and sniff the air. They are curious animals and will keep an eye on us as we walk.

Walking and talking. One of my favorite past times. There is nothing better than sharing with friends.

Yesterday I bought some new curtains. Well, actually I used a gift certificate that I had. I don’t think anyone else in my family appreciates them as much as I do. That’s okay. God gave me an eye for aesthetics. I’m all for practical, but I also long for beauty. I appreciate the way the light pools on the floor, making a warm oasis. The shimmer of morning as it peeks through the curtains. The richness of the wood cabinets. The smell of my cinnamon/vanilla candle. I love color, and texture and smell. I think that God will have heaven be one big explosion of the senses. Wouldn’t that be awesome?

Uh oh….the rain has started.

You have to go? Alright then. Maybe you can you come back tomorrow? I’ve really enjoyed our time together. It’s great having you as a neighbor.

*** What’s happening at your house on this Good Friday? I’ll pull up a chair and you can tell me.***

Breathe In…Breathe Out

A Christmas tree inside a home.

Image via Wikipedia

Normally, I am an organized person. I love my calendars, daytimer, and to do list. This Christmas season has seen me running in circles, and having the feeling of not getting much accomplished. I told my daughter this morning that I have yet to watch more than ONE of my all time favorite Christmas movies. The only reason I was able to watch The Bishop’s Wife (with Cary Grant) is that I squeezed it in WHILE I was balancing my checkbook. How sad is that?

I had such high hopes of eating warm cookies, and drinking hot chocolate while watching Christmas movies. I would have plenty of time to shop and wrap gifts. Yes, in my mind it was going to be like a Norman Rockwell picture or a print from Currier and Ives. Sigh. Instead it looked more like this….

1. WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU CAN’T SHIP BY CHRISTMAS???!!! You have to ship by Christmas. There are lives at stake! Namely mine.

2. I think the tree is leaning forward. Can we prop something under the stand? What would fit up under there without knocking it over?

3. Why are the lights blinking? Stop the blinking. I’m about to have a seizure!

4. I’m too tired to make cookies tonight.That is pretty tired, people.

5. The materials for the gingerbread house are still in the box. Wow, the picture on the box looks really cute. Maybe we could just cut the picture out and prop it up. Will people even notice?

6. I asked my son if he’d be offended if I just chucked his and his brother and sister’s gifts under the tree and forgot the  gift wrapping? He just stared at me. Really? Okay, fine. It was worth a try.

7. My company will be welcomed to our house through a pet cluttered deck, and into a laundry (alas, mud) room. The floor is covered in mud and snow…..and quite frankly, at this point I don’t care. This is our life. Mud and all.

8. If I get cut off in the parking lot at Wal-mart one more time, I might have holiday road rage.  On the up side, my mug shot could be used for next year’s Christmas card.

9. Speaking of Christmas cards, I had such good intentions. Really. I did.

10. I’m playing Mary (as in Jesus mother) this year. It’s an Advent monologue that I am performing this Sunday. I love drama. I just hope I can remember my lines! Breathe in…..breathe out…….

Merry Christmas Everyone!