Sunday, November 29, 2015

On to Christmas

Hi all, I hope you had a great Thanksgiving! Mine was ... meh, kind of like any other day. My husband was up north hunting (which he does every year) so the boys & I went to my mom's. That's it, just the 4 of us. Those of you out there who complain about noisy holidays & too many people, consider yourself lucky! Back in the day we had great holidays with my grandmas, aunts, uncles & cousins. Most of them are gone now, & those who are still with us have their own families so our holiday celebrations have become much smaller. But I am grateful to still have my mom, & to have 2 fantastic boys who actually like spending time with me (I think).

I'm not really big on Christmas. Ever since my dad died I've had a hard time with it. Then my grandma died a couple of years ago & well, if I didn't have kids I wouldn't even acknowledge it. But this year I decided to go all out in decorating our house. My older one in particular really loves Christmas & the decorations so I did this for him. I think the other one couldn't care less, lol. But as long as one of them appreciates it, that's all I need. 

So, if you can't beat em, join em. Here are a few snippets of our house in its current holiday condition:

First, our mantle. Do you see a theme here?? I looooove snowmen. Probably because I loooooove winter. I know, I'm in the minority. I love summer too, but winter is just so ..... pretty & peaceful. Well, after the holidays it's peaceful. lol

Disclaimer: Pretend the wall is painted a pretty olive green. My husband & I have been fighting for years about our walls. He likes white. We've had white for 13 years. I think it's my turn now, & I want color. Care to place bets on who will win this war of wall color?

I have wayyyy more snowmen, but our mantle is only so big haha.

Sometimes we put lights on the mantle. Sometimes we put batting on the mantle. I don't know why it took me so many years to realize it would be pretty with both. 

I love this guy. I don't even remember where I got him, but he's always resided in our front hallway. I had a duh moment yesterday .... broom .... sweep ... fireplace! He is now next to the fireplace. Much better.

Did I mention I love snowmen?? Here's a whole dang cute family of them! 

This is actually a potpourri burner that I bought about 20 years ago. Does anyone use potpourri anymore?? I don't. But I thought it was cute & figured I could easily add it to my "village". "Village" because really, its just a few houses & such.... nothing compared to some I've seen. Maybe that's something to strive for ... a larger village. So it can take even longer for me to decorate for the holidays.

You might also know, I love Disney. I have no idea where this snowglobe came from but it's adorable. I actually hadn't seen it in years. The advantage of full out decorating .... you discover things that were buried wayyyy in the back of the Christmas storage closet. 

And finally, our tree. I did the decorating around the house by myself but my boys did the tree all by themselves. I think they did a beautiful job & each year I'm finding I have to rearrange fewer & fewer ornaments lol. 

If you made it this far, thanks for sticking with me. I don't think I've ever done a post about my Christmas decorations or tree before. I'm really trying to un-Scrooge myself & get into the spirit. It's been a rough couple of months & I really just want to enjoy the holiday. 

Have a super week! 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Thank you & happy Thanksgiving!

I so appreciate all the messages regarding my last post ... I have the best cyber buddies! I am fine .... getting through my tough time with a little help from my friends .... and meds lol. I went to my physician a few weeks ago for blood work & there were some issues, but nothing that can't be fixed. I have another dr appointment next month & hopefully all will be well after that.

I took today & tomorrow off, & with the holiday that equal 6 whole days off of work. Hubby is up north hunting .... kids are doing their thing .... so it's a very relaxing time for me. I baked a little bit today & even found time to finish a card I started a few days months ago.

So ... I just want to say ... thank you so much for caring! Happy & safe Thanksgiving to all of you, my friends! 

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Good bye .... for now

It's a beautiful Saturday today here in the midwest ..... and yet I am sitting in my bedroom, under my covers, with no desire to do anything. I'm a little bit physically sick .... sore throat & headache .... but a lot emotionally sick. It's been a very hard week, as we said good bye to our German exchange student. That kid totally stole my heart & I don't think I've ever had a harder time leaving someone. 

This all triggered a lot of tears .... but I realized that I have been very sad lately & him leaving was just the icing on the cake. I've suffered from anxiety & sleep issues for many years .... but now I feel I'm toppling on the edge of depression. 

I've never understood depression. I'm normally a very happy person. I laugh a lot. I love life. But depression does run in my family, & as I approach the age of menopause & so many changes within, I feel it's coming to take me away.

I just need a break. I wish I could take a break from absolutely everything. My job. My friends. My life. But I can't. I will go forth doing the things that must be done. But I am scaling back. No more blogging for a while .... as little online time as I can manage .... no more killing myself making sure everyone around me is happy .... no more running 23 errands a day to make sure everyone in my family is happy & has what they need .... I need to take some time for myself, to make sure *I* am happy. So, I will rest. I will take a break. Good bye for now, my friends. I'll be back.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Friday five

TGIF peeps! And bonus -- it is now fall!! Here are my 5 randoms for the week: 

1: In case you didn't hear me, it's fall!! My favorite season ... this says it all:

2: It's Homecoming week! The week where I also dress like a dork. The week that I am full of school spirit, even though it's been 30 years since I was in high school. The week I wear all the blue & gold clothing I own. This year will be the one & only year my son will be going to the dance. He's always involved in everything else .... parade, float, pep rally, bonfire .... but dances aren't his thing. Too bad so sad, this year he has been coerced into going & I can't wait to take pictures! 

3: My first year owning this: 

This is a Blueberry Smoothie Althea, & actually I think I planted it late last year. I thought it was a summer flowering plant, but I guess mine is a late bloomer. Ha!! Late bloomer!! See what I did there?? hahaaaa

4: Avengers movies. I love them all.

My boys & I usually see these movies in the theater, together. With the latest movie, Avengers: Age of Ultron, my older The latest movie however, my older son saw with his friends. Yes, I know ... he's a teenager & teenagers normally DO prefer going to movies with friends. Anyway, my husband just bought the dvd so the younger one & I are watching it this weekend. I can't wait! Did I mention I love these movies??? The fact that Robert Downey Jr is Iron Man does NOT hurt :)

5: I'm sorry, I know this is old news but I laughed out loud when I saw this one:

Hope you've all had a great week! We only have a few more days left with our German student & I am going to lose it when he leaves. I was so worried about him coming here, I wasn't sure how it was going to feel having a stranger in our house for two weeks. Now I can't imagine not having him here. Hopefully he had so much fun he'll want to come back for another visit :)

~ Linking up with ~

High Five for Friday

Five on Friday

Friday Blog Booster Party

Midlifeluv Linky Party

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Update ~ halfway through our visit

Well, I had really planned on posting DAILY while our exchange student was here, so I could tell you all about him & what all the kids are doing every day .... but there just hasn't been a single spare minute. We have been busy busy busy ... trying to cram as much activity as we can into these 2 weeks. And this week is Homecoming so the fun will just keep going :)

It has been an absolute blast having him here. I was so nervous about having someone ... a *foreign* someone, to boot .... stay here for 2 weeks, but I absolutely love him & I don't want to give him back. He is just so sweet & he & my son get along great. All the German students & hosts get along & there have been quite a few parties/ bonfires that they've attended. We even had one here on Saturday ... first one in our new fire pit that isn't even finished. I mean, it WORKS ... there was fire ... it just doesn't look very pretty yet. 

I'll just skip over the part where they decided {on their own} to also burn the entire pile to the left of the pit. It was huge. The pile AND the fire. Yeeks. 

Saturday was our Fall Fest here in town & my son played a song on his guitar in front of the music store where he takes lessons. They have a stage set up & live music all day. I tried to videotape it, but Matthew said I cut it off halfway. Which is weird, because I didn't even breathe the whole time he was playing, let along hit the stop button. I told him to record it here at home so I can post it :)

I laughed when I posted this picture on Facebook, I didn't realize the signs on the store window over their heads .... Dominik is "new" & Matthew is "used". 

We couldn't NOT treat our German to a night of Ponza Rottas. What? You've never heard of a Ponza Rotta?? Maybe because our town invented them, & I guess they never spread outside the county hahaa. It's basically a deep fried calzone as big as your head.

Yes, that is a regular size plate! 

So much other fun stuff ... the kids all went to Lazer Tag one night .... downtown to sit by the river & watch the sun set .... tennis games (yes, Dominik got MY ROCKER SON to try tennis. My son thought nothing of wearing his Led Zeppelin t-shirt, ponytail & aviators .... oh how I wish I could have watched. I think Matthew said he got lucky & hit one ball. Out of about 40. hahaa). We also had another German student here one night for dinner because his host had cross country practice & he was just as aweome, & so funny. Seriously, these kids are amazing. They tell great stories .... I don't know how they can be so stinkin FUNNY when English isn't even their first language! They are smart, well traveled ... they've both done many exchanges & speak many languages ... the only downside to all this is I'm going to cry for a looooong time when he leaves. Thank goodness for the internet so at least it will be easy to keep in touch.

And ..... this has nothing to do with the German, as he was already sound asleep when this happened .... but here are a few shots of the lunar eclipse from the other night. They don't compare to some of the photos I've seen online around the world, but I still had fun taking them. 

Enjoy your week!

Monday, September 21, 2015

We have a visitor!

I'm so excited, our German exchange student arrived today! 

I've been really stressing about this. We signed up for the program well over a year ago. We host now, & in 2 years my son will go stay with his family for a few weeks. I wasn't sure how I would feel having a stranger stay in our house. And HOW was I going to converse with him?? Well, I was worried for nothing. He is a super sweet kid who speaks English VERY well. Heck, he speaks English better than some people I know.

The boys are out right now, touring our oh-so-exciting town with some of the other exchange students & hosts. Kidding, I love where we live. It's small, homey, & we do quirky things like the Jack OLantern Jaunt for Hallowen & Midnight Magic for Christmas. These students first visited Chicago, & after 2 weeks here they are off to New York. They get both extremes! 

Here they are, ready to bail. I'm lucky I got a picture on their way to the car lol. And how scary is it that they are the same height, both wear glasses (well, my son just got contacts), same hair {if Matthew would cut his}, they both play guitar, they like the same music.... & they both LOVE to eat! They have so much in common that I think this will be fun for everyone. 

Stay tuned ... I will keep you updated on our daily doings :)

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

Shhhhhhh .... small human, you talk way too much.

Linking up with: 

Wordless Wednesday

Wake Up Wednesday

Wonderful Wednesday

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Are you ready for some FOOTBALL???!?!?

I am!!! If you didn't know, I am a H-U-G-E football fan, & the first regular season game starts in 35 minutes. Guess who my favorite team is ....

And as for today's game ....

Did you know the Bears tried to trade Jay Cutler? That's right .... they tried, but there were no takers.  #sorrynotsorry

I just wanted to check in since it's been at least a week. It was a busy one, at work AND here at home. This coming week we are preparing for our houseguest ..... it's an exciting time .... more to follow! 

Have a super Sunday! 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Wordless Wednesday ~ hello goodbye

 I know it's not officially fall yet, but it seems once the kids go back to school .... well, summer is over. 

I struggled with my flowers this year. Seems we either got too much rain at once .... or we went days & days without ... & we were so busy I just didn't have time to tend to them as I had planned. So, soon I will have to say good bye to these .....

But thankfully, these are waiting in the wings .... 

~ Linking up with ~ 

Almost Wordless Wednesday

Wake Up Wednesday

Outdoor Wednesday 

Wonderful Wednesday

Friday, August 28, 2015

No Friday happiness today

Yes, it's Friday. No, I'm not celebrating with my usual happy Friday randoms.

Have you ever had those times when this happens, then that happens, then more of that happens .... & you could deal with each of these by themselves ... but when they all happen at once you just want to crawl into bed for the next few weeks?? That was my week this week. Don't worry, I won't go into specifics .... & I probably won't post again until things are better .... because this is supposed to be a HAPPY blog .... not a crabby patty blog. Let's just say it was a week of car repairs (x2), a sick kitty & some medical issues. A cruddy work week, too many bills, too much unfun stuff to do. 

So I am simply spending my weekend drinking coffee .... cuddling my very old kitty, who will probably not be around much longer .... finishing up Breaking Bad (does it count as binge watching if it's taken you 9 months to watch all 5 seasons?).... continuing to declutter & organize .... oh, & of course, laundry. Lots & lots of laundry. Always laundry.

I hope you've had a better week than I. Here's to a better one next week!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

I love where I live. This little scene happened right in our back yard a few weeks ago ....

My husband said there was a fawn in our yard having a snack & to grab my camera. When I zoomed in, I saw a few extra legs.

What's better than spying a fawn drinking from its mom?? Spying TWO of them. And then .... how cute are their behinds as they're walking away? 

Linking up with: 

Wake Up Wednesday

Wordless Wednesday

Wonderful Wednesday

Outdoor Wednesday

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