Saturday, December 23, 2017

December 23rd!

I hope everyone is ready for Christmas! Any last minute shoppers out there!
I think I'm done shopping but haven't even started wrapping yet. But first I thought I would share a little more of my Christmas decorations this year.
I don't have a lot of Santa's but my good friend Patsy was selling these at our church rummage sale and this one just had to come home with me!
He is watching over my 'Night Before Christmas in Paris' book!
We don't do Elf on a Shelf but I found this one at a thrift shop and he is happy to live with me and watch over the bills instead of naughty or nice children!
Here is the kitchen tree hung with all sorts of cookies and baking goodies!
Do you see the fortune cookie?
I do love my Maileg pixies!
This year my Mom and I are giving each other Ancestry DNA kits.  It will be fun to see what they show.  I've been feeling my roots lately.
So Norwegian Helga has been reading to the brother & sister mice a nice French Christmas book!(it will be fun to see how much Norwegian and French blood I do have) 
Christmas pillows on the couch!
The Christmas tree is hard to photograph but it's been so much fun this year.  Vintage, new, handmade, bought, memory and souvenir ornaments adorn it!
I'm so blessed that my wonderful friend Donna@ Distressed Donna Down Home dyes the most amazing little trees each year.  This year some of them came out Flamingo Pink and she gifted me some in various sizes!  I just love them!!
Annie is enjoying all the ornaments but is careful with them.

But one of my favorite decorations is
Scout in her pink Santa hat with a big bow!!  She is so excited this year about Christmas! 

December 23rd is a special day.
11 years ago my daughter married the love of her life Blake!
I love them both so much!

Two years ago on Dec 23rd my brother reached the end of his life.  
I miss him and my Dad so much!
I'll be spending Christmas morning with Sara, Blake, Tiger and Scout!  Mom will join us for dinner along with Ashleigh!  She is flying in very late Christmas Eve and I can't wait to hug my girl.  Sara and Ashleigh's Dad will also be joining us Christmas night as he travels from Minn. with stories of snow for the Grands!  It promises to be a loud love filled day! 

Merry Christmas and as always...
I wish you JOY!


Wednesday, December 6, 2017

When Things Run Their Course

run its course means "to continue (naturally) until finished".

To progress along something's 
natural course and conclude at its 
normal pace.

Don't panic...I'm not talking about my blog!

Let's back up a bit!
Texas trip was a success but not without it's problems.  Mostly that Mom got sick on Thanksgiving with a nasty cold and is still not feeling well. Still we got to visit family and enjoyed lots of talk, laughter, jokes, memories and sweet hugs and kisses! 
The view from our beach front condo on Padre Island.  
The view of the condo from the beach.
Not bad at all!

It was pretty warm but lots of wind.
Cloudy mornings with mostly afternoon sunshine.  I took a couple of walks on the beach, collected seashells for me and the Grands and relaxed!
Next to us was a public beach.  You can drive your car onto the beach and set up camp.  Fishing, grilling and fun!
They had the Berkeland spelled wrong but the thought was nice.  
We had 62 for Thanksgiving Dinner! 
There was a group photo taken on the beach but I don't have a copy of it yet.  I'm looking forward to getting that memory.  
Before leaving Houston we were able to visit with my niece Amanda and her son Ethan.  Mom enjoyed seeing her Granddaughter and Great Grandson!
I miss them so much!
Beach feet!  I've been taking a photo like this for years! 

The travel home was hard since Mom didn't feel well.  Thank goodness for wheelchair assistance, portable oxygen and helpful flight attendants! 
Picking up the kitties and getting home felt so good! 
I missed Annie so much.  She forgave me rather quickly although she is not sure about this 'tree' in front of her window.  I love this photo of her.  Napping under the Christmas tree was always a favorite place of Charlie's and it warms my heart to see Annie there! 
Getting home on Nov 28th put me behind in my Christmas decorating!
So I hauled out the tree and got it up right away.  It took a few days to get out the ornaments but they are mostly on the tree now. 
I started working on the cubbies filling them with vintage Christmas.  Then I sat down and realized it looked cluttered to me.  So I decided to edit my vintage to the items I really love. 
The top cubbies are good! 
My collection of nativities is too crowded so I'll rearrange that soon.
I love everything in this cubbie!
It feels good to let go.  Some things I'm sending to my friend Donna and others I'm donating back into the wild. 
So here is where the phrase 'when things run their course' comes in...
I realized it was truly time to downsize my Christmas.  This isn't the first time I've done this, but this time it was 'use it or lose it' time. 
This tote of ornaments and decorations most of which hasn't been used in years is going to my church.
This box of ornaments and various decorations is going to the thrift shop
This box of ornaments is going to my daughter's house.  Some for her if she wants them, some for the Grands (they each have their own tiny tree they decorate) and what they don't want...donated!

I am looking at two empty totes and more space in my ornament boxes! 

As I've gotten older it has been harder and harder to haul out those totes, decorate, put the totes away and then clean up after Christmas.  I still love to decorate but I decided I can't keep things I no longer use.
**The ONLY exception is shiny brites some from my childhood that I don't display around the Grands or the Cat**
I will still hunt for vintage Christmas. This sleigh and Santa are both 2017 thrift store finds and keepers!
But I no longer will buy everything I think is 'cute' or 'old' or 'tiny' or ...
I just can't!
I thrifted all of these items this year and some are staying, some are gifts and some I'm returning to the thrift shop...sigh!  
I'm not done going through all the Christmas yet, but I've made a great start.  Sometimes things just run their course!

Wishing you JOY,


Thursday, November 16, 2017

Give Thanks & Health Update

Another busy month! 
November is always a month that reminds me to count my blessings!
I tweaked my cubbies to reflect Thanksgiving.  Soon it will be all red and green and Christmas!
Replaced the ghosts with fall flowers!
I found this sweet bowl for Annie at the thrift shop.  She likes pretty things!
Scored this sweet pink planter half price at an Antique Mall
I could not pass on this adorable Paris souvenir salt & pepper set
I finally took this photo of the wonderful fun gifts my friend Donna @ Distressed Donna Down Home gave me.  We met in Madison, Ga for some fun shopping, great lunch and lots of laughs!  Donna finds the best things and she shares! 
Mom and I are about to head to Texas for a family reunion on my Mom's side. Her brother, sisters, cousins and more cousins.  It will be a great trip.  We will stay at a condo on Padre Island so I will have the beach to walk and shells to find.  I'm really looking forward to some downtime, family time and lots of great food at Thanksgiving!  We will also visit some family members in Houston who won't make the reunion.

My latest tests had good results.  No masses found.  Everything looked good but the paraesophageal hernia will still need to be reviewed by a surgeon.  I saw a new Dr (Gastroenterology) and he was great!  He had reviewed all my tests and history and said that I might have spasms of the stomach and/or intestines.  I have a prescription for an antispasmodic that I will take with me to Texas.  I am also scheduled for a Endoscopy to check my stomach for an ulcer.  So the tests continue, but all the really BAD things have been ruled out.  Whew!
I am feeling better and will continue to watch what I eat and how much.  I am feeling more positive about everything.

And finally
I am so thankful for all of you!
Wishing you all the most wonderful Thanksgiving


Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Happy Halloween & MRI Results

Happy Halloween!
I don't decorate like I use too, but as I showed you the other day I still have some witches and brooms around!
I found this McCoy planter at a thrift shop for a couple of dollars and love it with my Pumpkins and Ghosts!
I have been looking for a bread bowl for a long time and found this one on Ebay when I had a free $10 towards the price.  It's a bit smaller then I thought but it's still pretty!
My Doctor called with my MRI results

No stones in the biliary tract (yea)

I do have a Paraesophageal Hernia which I will have evaluated by a surgeon in January.  I knew I had a hiatial hernia and take reflux meds for it but this condition is worse and can cause more problems.  

I will have to have a CT Scan with Contrast to evaluate a few things further.

I have a Cyst on my Kidney - which is not uncommon  and most are just fluid filled, but the contrast/non-contrast scan will show more detail.  It was called 'medium' in size so my Dr wants it looked at.  

She has also referred me to a Gastroenterology Dr because the opening of my pancreas could be too small. I will see him on Nov 15th right before my trip.
The good news is my Doctor cleared me for my trip to Texas!  I'm so happy that Mom and I will be able to go to this family reunion.

I am to continue to eat low fat and smaller more frequent meals.  I've been trying this since my attack and I can tell it has helped.  So good news, no news and more tests!  Sounds about right.

Your prayers and good wishes have meant so much to me! Thank you!

Wishing you JOY,


Thursday, October 26, 2017


I can't believe how October has flown by!  Life is busy busy and yet there has been some time for reflection.
I did dig out my one bin of Fall/Halloween decor and put up a few things in the cubbies.
I love the colored glass and this will stay until Christmas but the Halloween bears and owl will go back in the bin soon!  Maybe a few Thanksgiving items will take their place. 
My favorite witch is out with some lovely handmade pumpkins 
I can't seem to take a decent photo lately.  I guess I need to get out my 'better' camera.
These two continue to bring me such JOY!
Tiger is 6 going on 16 his Mother says! He is doing well in school and just getting to be such a big boy.  He has started calling me Grammie which I love!  
Scout at 2 and half is a tall girl and so smart! She is a mixture of rough and tumble and girly girl!  Her favorite color is pink!  I have such a good time buying her clothes and indulging her princess personality!
This little girl just celebrated her one year Gotcha Day!  She has brought much love into my life.  She has turned into a complete snuggle kitty.
I love this little face and those eyes!
Annie Belle I'm glad we found each other!

I haven't done much watercolor painting
I am happy with how this tree turned out!
I was happy with this wreath until I tried to add 'give thanks' to the middle and then I ruined it.  I need to practice before I try this again.  I'm hoping to make some Christmas gifts this year.
I have been having some health issues and would ask for your prayers
After my gallbladder surgery over a year ago I was feeling really good.  Then this past July I had an episode of pain that sent me to the ER.  They said it wasn't pancreatitis which was my fear but didn't give me any diagnosis.  The pain went away and I was just trying to be careful of fats in my diet.  Then about 3 weeks ago I had another 'attack'.  Almost as painful but this time it has been up and down in intensity.  I had blood work done which showed that my pancreas and liver functions are fine.  Monday I had an MRI to check to see if I have stones or some other blockage in my bile duct or whatever else is in there!  I'm waiting on the results.  As of now my pain comes and goes but the discomfort seems to be constant.  I've been eating but very small meals and very low fat hoping that will help.  All this has taken a toll on me.  No energy and doing much of anything has been hard.  We really need an answer to this.  Mom and I have a big trip planned for Thanksgiving for a family reunion in Texas.  She will see her brother and sisters and visit other family also.  We are praying that whatever is going on with me doesn't cancel this trip.  So prayers and good thoughts appreciated! 

Wishing you JOY,