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.
Tags: "beginning photography", "Pine Lake", lake, photography, reflections, serenity, summer
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.
Hope to be posting occasionally and catch up with all my favorite blogging buddies!
Tags: "Pine Lake", fall, photography, reflections
In the Psalms of the Old Testament you will find the word Selah within the individual Psalms. I had to do some checking into what that really means. There are different interpretations depending on where you read for a definition.
One definition of Selah that I found was this, “The Selah is there to signal the believer to ‘measure’ carefully the meaning of what has been said. i.e., here is some deeper wisdom, reflect on it and understand its true meaning.”
Another definition of Selah is to pause…consider…take time. This is the one that I think of when I look at this picture of Bond Falls that I took last fall.
Life has been busy this past year. This weekend I’m looking forward to a time to pause. Selah! A change in scenery, location and schedule. Nothing as grand as a vacation but a time to enjoy my surroundings and people in my life outside of work and home. The weather is supposed to be great so I am looking forward to taking some pictures along the way and some time to rest, read and revive to finish the year well.
Tags: "Bond Falls, contemplate, fall, pause, photography, Psalms, rest, revive, Selah, waterfalls
Early this morning my husband and I a trip to the Twin Cities to pick up a car he bought for our car lot. I was playing with my camera while riding in the passenger seat.
It is so easy to just set my camera to the auto mode and let the camera decide what my picture should look like instead of trying to learn the manual mode for my camera.
I love the artsy look to the freeway traffic this morning. It wasn’t my intention to get the traffic in my photo but the right sunrise exposure. I didn’t get the sunrise picture I was looking forward to but I did learn a few things about the manual settings on my camera.
Any day I learn something new is a good day!
Tags: "beginning photography", "early morning", "manual mode", Minnesota, photography, traffic
This afternoon I was picking up by sister at St John’s University when I saw this incredible display called Art on the Prairie. It is called Stickwork and it is the work of artist Patrick Dougherty. For more of his creative work see http://www.stickwork.net
The structures are made entirely of sticks and branches. They are large enough to go inside and look out. It is also possible to walk in between the structures. The structures remind me of artwork from Dr, Seuss’s books, whimsical and a little off-kilter.
I wish that I had one of these structures in my yard. It would be a kid’s play land dream come true. They said that the structure will most likely last two years of being exposed to the elements. It is well worth the brief detour south off I-94 to see Art on the Prairie.
Tags: "Art on the Prairie", "Patrick Dougherty", "St. John's University", "St. Joseph, MN", photography, stickwork
Today during my lunch break my grandson wanted to take a bath. I was in the kitchen fixing lunch and taking care of the day’s mail when I could hear a voice singing from the bathroom. He was singing his own little song, making it up as he went. This is his “Happy Place”
Tags: "bath time", "daily life", "weekly photo challenge", photography, singing
This morning I was standing in Wal-Mart looking at fall decorating ideas. I love to decorate for the seasons but have been desperately trying to downsize in all aspects of my life. I stood with a new table-cloth for fall in one hand and an apple cinnamon scented candle in the other while I looked at a pumpkin table decorations with votive candles on the shelf. I decided to place them back on the shelves and head home with about $35 still in my pocket.
When I got home I had an email in my inbox from a blog that I have followed the past couple of months”The Year of Less” . I clicked on today’s blog http://theyearofless.blogspot.com and it was so appropriate for my dilemma for decorating. She was talking about looking at things in her home in light of whether Ma Ingalls (The Little House on the Prairie) would have the item in her home. I loved her perspective in the blog. Keep it simple!
This is what I came up with for decorating my table for the fall.
They are all items that I already own. I picked the Hydrangea from my bush and placed them in a flowering can that I have had for some time and placed them on top of a doily that a friend gave me for a birthday a few years ago.
I don’t plan on over doing the decorating this year. I plan to keep it simple and natural if possible using things I already own or in a new way to make them seem new to me.
Tags: "fall decorating", "little house on the prairie", "Ma Ingalls", "seasonal decorations", "The Year of Less", "watering can", doily, Hydrangea, photography, simplify
It’s been over two months since I lasted posted on the blog. Life happens, especially in Minnesota in the summer. It seems that everyone tries to cram everything into the twelve weeks of summer. We have been busy with life, work and “The Project” Throw in a few weddings, birthday parties, reunions and we are already back to shortened days and cooler temperatures much sooner than expected. My to do list still has too many items left on it.
Below are some before and after pictures from our project. It has been fun seeing it take shape. There is still much to do both inside and out. There have been a few bumps in the road and distractions along the way so progress on our part as been slow. The carpenters working on the project have been awesome.
I hope to get back to posting more often. I had to put the camera down for a few months after breaking my collar-bone the end of June after tipping my motorcycle. It has slowed me down a bit but I am finally back to having some strength back in my right arm. The good news is my left arm is getting so much stronger since I’ve had to use it instead of the right.
Hope summer is treating all of you well. Jeanne
Tags: "DIY projects", architecture, bungalow, flipping, home improvement, Minnesota, photography, projects, small town living, summer, Unfinished Projects
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.
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.
Tomorrow should be an exciting day as we see the roof lines starting to take shape.
Tags: "DIY projects", "home improvement projects", "Upsala, architecture, bungalow, carpenters, photography, remodeling, Unfinished Projects
It’s been about two months since we finalized the purchase of our project home in Upsala. Since that time my husband and I have done a lot of small and big projects. We have been busy building new stairways, removing old stairways and entirely gutting the upstairs down to the studs in preparation for this day.
This is the old stairway that we removed from the center of the home. It was ladder-like in its steepness. We are leaving the door on this end to make a new closet area. The back half of the old stairwell will have drawers in the bottom half and on the top of the drawers will be a place to leave your keys and other miscellaneous items as you enter the back door.
New stairway located on the North wall of home. The photo below shows our plans for the stairway. The basement stairs are directly below the upper stairs. Both the upstairs and basement can be accessed from the garage. We also opened a wall from the kitchen to this new entry way. Improving the overall flow of the house.
We spent a lot of time measuring and mapping out the new location of the stairs before we cut any openings and started building the stairs. We measured and remeasured to make sure we had enough room. Its hard to picture but this old bedroom has become an entryway with stairs to go up or down and out to the garage and out to the backyard. We added another bedroom upstairs to compensate for the loss of one of the two main floor bedrooms.
We gutted the upstairs to get ready for the carpenters to come and add dormers and windows to the second floor. There was very little usable space upstairs due to the low ceiling height and the stairway cutting the space in half due to its location in the center of the home.
The new upstairs will contain a Master Suite complete with walk-in closet, bathroom and office or sitting area at the top of the stairs.
Today our carpenters arrived to start putting our dreams for the property into reality. Yesterday we finalized the color choices and the floor plans.
I love watching the trucks arrive, unloading the lumber and the smell of freshly cut wood. I had a hard time concentrating at work today know that things were happening just up the hill but not within my sight. At lunchtime we joined the carpenters on the front lawn for lunch. They all sat in their lawn chairs with their coolers sitting in front of them and we with our sandwiches and coffee from the convenience store in town. It was a wonderful place to eat lunch today admiring the work that they had accomplished this morning.
It might not look like much of a change so far but here it is. They changed the roof line on the garage and framed for the new part of the roof with the car port. I’m excited to see the roof on the house opened up next week and see all the new roof lines, windows and shingles upstairs. The new upstairs will have much more room and light than before we started as well as additional bathroom in the home.
The plan with the garage was to change the present lean to style attached garage to a hip roof. The garage door opening in the background will be moved one stud space to the left and the windows to the top panel and grids placed in the glass. We are working on plans to make the garage door look more like a set of carriage doors rather than a conventional door.
Tags: "diy project", "Upsala, architecture, blogging, bungalow, carpenters, hiproof, home improvement, photography, remodeling, stairways, Unfinished Projects