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Category Archives: Life Happens

It’s Only Twelve Weeks Long…

Here in Minnesota we celebrate summer after the long winter.  The problem is how to pack as much as you can into the summer.  It was a few years ago when our kids were graduating from high school that we came to the realization that the summer is only 12 weeks long and everyone tries to pack everything into those 12 weekends.

It starts with Memorial Day weekend with the parades and local remembrance services and directly into the graduation parties for the recent graduates.  Now in a small town of 400 no one wants to miss each others parties so the last of the parties may well be into July.  Spring and summer are traditionally wedding seasons here as the brides hope for the perfect spring or summer day.

July brings the Fourth of July activities with parades and local town celebrations.  We are surrounded by several other small towns each having their own celebration and then our town celebration of Heritage Days is the second weekend of August each summer.  This year is the biggie, 100 years since our town was incorporated.

Summer is the traditional time for vacations and camping when the kids are out of school so those of us who don’t have kids in school or our kids are grown work while others take their vacation with their kids.  Its okay with me because I prefer to duck out of town in the middle of winter for a little warm weather elsewhere.

Before we know it the back to school shopping season is upon us and Labor Day.  The boats are off the lakes and put away and everyone wonders what happened to summer.

My response lately is that summer is only 12 weeks long.

That being said we have already packed so much into the spring/summer season already it feels like it should be done but I am delighted to realize that we are not half way through yet.

We’ve been up north to Two Harbors to work on my brother’s new land he purchased to develop into a rustic retreat.  We’ve been to San Francisco to celebrate our nephew’s wedding.  We’ve attended several graduation parties and helped host a family reunion for my mom’s family from all over the United States.

Our most exciting news is welcoming our first granddaughter to the family.  We’ve welcomed two more grandsons to the mix since I last blogged and will be adding a daughter-in-law to the family in January.  Life is good…but short…celebrate accordingly.

 

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Serenity

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Today was one of those days.  You know the one.  It’s the one that at the end of it every thing just feels right.

It wasn’t a day of vacation.  It was a normal work day for me doing the normal bookkeeping stuff, visiting with customers, answering phone calls and cleaning up cars.  It wasn’t extraordinary in any particular way but it felt right.

After work I took the top off the Corvette and drove a half hour through beautiful countryside to meet friends for dinner.  Wires must have been crossed because when I got there no one was there that I was supposed to meet but it was okay because it was a beautiful evening for a ride.

When I got home I stood outside taking clothes in off the clothesline and just listened.  In the distance I could hear the kids singing from the local bible camp across the road, loons calling in the distance, and an occasional fish jumping in the water.

I watched the changing colors across the lake as the sun was setting and a bat swooping down to the surface collecting bugs for its dinner.

It’s been a while since I’ve taken the time to appreciate all that surrounds me.  It’s beautiful and serene.

 
 

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Time Aware

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It’s soon approaching the two year anniversary of my ruptured brain aneurysm on October 19, 2012. If there is one thing I could say that would describe my life since then is my overwhelming sense of time.

I’ve always heard people older than me often commenting how fast time is moving. Perhaps now I’m just one of those people that are in that category because I am older now. I turned 54 in January.

Since my aneurysm I feel a certain urgency about completing tasks that I’ve started in the past and a reluctance to start anything new for fear that it will be yet another unfinished task in a pile that is too high already.

Last October our oldest daughter got married and they are expecting their first child on Thanksgiving. Our youngest daughter is getting married this October. These are exciting times in our home with the anticipation of these events.

Last month my husband and I went on a short term mission trip to a boys orphanage in Kingston, Jamaica. It is something I have wanted to do for a long time but life was busy with our own family so we could never seem to find the right time to go. I left part of my heart in Kingston. We are planning a return trip for this July.

I am more aware of time these days as I watch both my parents and my husband’s parents approaching 80 years old. We are blessed that they are all in good health and able to live each day independently but I realize at any time that can change and with that change there will be change.

My mind wanders from the present to the future as I ponder what regrets I will feel about my life if there are things I don’t accomplish or pursue and whether they really are important in the scheme of things.

Each day I get up and go to work as I did before the aneurysm, knowing that I need to work or we need to change our lifestyle so we don’t need to work as much. I still wonder what my perfect job or life would be when I grow up.

I told my husband this past week that I finally decided on my new career. I told him that I’ve decided to be a stay at home Mom. He looked at me puzzled. He said “Don’t you have to have kids at home to be a stay at home Mom?” I said ” I don’t think so after all I am a Mom and I am perfectly capable of staying at home. I don’t think they have to happen at the same time to meet the definition. What could be more perfect.”

 
 

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Life goes on and on…..

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted anything here.  Life has been busy since last year when I spent a month in the hospital after a ruptured brain aneurysm.

Life is good.  All the headaches are gone after the surgery to place the two stents and two coils last November.  I recently went back to Milwaukee for my one year checkup and they threw in an angiogram just for fun.  After the angiogram I met with the surgeon and he told me see you in five years.  I was expected it to be an annual event.  God is so good!

I’m back working full-time for the past 9 months.  My oldest daughter got married and bought a home in October.  My youngest daughter will graduate from college on December 21.  We made our final college tuition payment the first week in November.  Twelve years of tuition payments were at times difficult to do but well worth getting all four of our kids through college with minimal debt.

Looking ahead my husband Dean and I will be taking a 8 day mission trip to Jamaica in July.  I can hardly wait for the trip.  It was something we’ve wanted to do for some time but college tuition made it impossible until now.

In Minnesota the weather is changing from cool to downright cold.  The lake was busy making ice last night and this morning.

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Hope to be posting occasionally and catch up with all my favorite blogging buddies!

 

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The Anatomy of an Aneurysm or how life can change in a moment

My surroundings have changed and so has my life since October 19, 2012.  My husband, son Matt and I were looking forward to a road trip to Elkhart, Wisconsin for an endurance car race with another car dealer and his son at Road America.  It was something that we had looked forward to since July.

We left Minnesota around midnight to travel the seven hours from our home to the track on Thursday, October 18, 2012 so we would arrive early in the morning in Elkhart.  We got there a few hours early before could check in at the track.  We gassed up the truck and starting looking forward to finding a nice place for some breakfast.

We hadn’t traveled far when I was struck with the most intense pain in my head I have ever felt.  My husband pulled the car to the curbside as I opened the window and then the door and collapsed onto the grassy curb.  This was the last image I remember of the day.

According to my husband and son they called for 911 and my son began CPR on me.  They loaded me up in an ambulance and took me to the Sheboygan hospital and then planned to airlift me to Milwaukee but couldn’t because of the weather.  They followed to the Sheboygan hospital to be met by the chaplain thinking that I didn’t make it, that I was gone… They then loaded me in another ambulance and transported me to Milwaukee, Wisconsin to the Froedtert Hospital.  I don’t remember any of this other than the grassy curb where I collapsed.

I woke up in Milwaukee to find out that I had a hemorrhagic stroke but they weren’t sure it was an aneurysm yet they would have to let the blood be reabsorbed before they could do an angiogram to try to find the aneurysm.  They did the study last Friday and found two veins that the need to stint and an aneurysm to coil before I can be released.  That is set for this Friday.

It has been a wild ride of pain, pain meds, treatments and not knowing what is next.  It is hard to be seven hours from home but my children and extended family have made the trip to visit.  They say that I am in one of the best hospitals for my condition and for that I am thankful for especially since I had contemplated stay home from the racing weekend which would have left me alone all weekend and likely to have received the quick and great care I received.

Just the week before we left home my husband made the comment that he was ready for one of those vacations where you go somewhere long enough to actually get bored and want to go home.  While this is not a vacation I am definitely bored and ready to be home.

I don’t know that I will look at each new day differently but how else can I in recognizing the gift of life that I have been given.  God is Good.

 
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Posted by on October 30, 2012 in aneurysym, Family, health, Life Happens

 

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Just another brick in the wall…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The year was 1974.  We had lived in our new house in St. Paul for a year and it was finally summer vacation.  The past school year had been difficult.  Starting a new school in the eighth grade was not fun especially when I didn’t want to move.  One good thing from the school year was I finally had a new friend and her family invited me to go with them on a camping trip for a week.  My parents agreed to let me go.

My friend invited me to go and her older brother invited his friend to go.  We slept in one tent and her brother and friend slept another tent and their parents in a small camper.  It was one of the best weeks of my junior high days.  All day long we spent time on the Cannon River either swimming or fishing and just laying in the sun.

My friend’s brother had discovered Pink Floyd as his new latest, greatest band.  He played the cassette tape over and over all week-long.  I’m sure everyone in the campground was tired of it by the time we went home.  The words of Pink Floyd will forever be etched in my brain like Just Another Brick in the Wall and song Money.  I can still hear the sound of the cash register from the beginning of Money.

The brick wall pictured above is downtown Detroit.  It was next to a parking lot for a bar we ate lunch at last fall when we visited Detroit.  It was unlike any other brick wall I had seen because it didn’t look like they took any pride in their work.  It was still unique to look at along with everything else nearby the bar.

 

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2012 in Architecture, Fall, Family, Life Happens, Photography, Vacations

 

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Moonlight Al Fresco

This evening I was a bit disappointed that I got back from town so late.  I wanted to take some pictures of the progress at the house.  It was already past sunset.  I decided to stop anyway and try to take a couple of shots because there was a very bright moon tonight.

I found my way in the dark to the door and walked in the dark up the stairs to take this shot.  The upstairs is basically gone except for a short wall on the east and the west and some larger walls left on the north and the south.

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If the mosquitoes weren’t so bad this evening I might have considered getting a couple of sleeping bags and sleeping out under the stars tonight.

Here are a couple of shots of the guys removing the rafters today.

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Tomorrow should be an exciting day as we see the roof lines starting to take shape.

 

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