Friday, May 31, 2013

Red, White & Blue

You’re a grand old flag
You’re a high flying flag...
George M. Cohan

To show our nations strength and unity, flying the American Flag is something proud Americans do.
However, there are certain proper ways to fly the flag that I must admit we don't always abide by.  For a complete list click here. I'm sure any google search for US flag etiquette will list all the different regulations (and laws?)
We fly our flag all the time, rain or shine and sometimes I don't take it down right at dusk, but that doesn't mean I disrespect our American Flag.
One good thing about flying OUR flag every day.... we never have to worry if it's a National Holiday that we should be flying the flag. 
Week #22 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - the American Flag
I love seeing little kids waving flags during a parade.  I love seeing the American Flag pinned to a gentleman's lapel, I love listening to our National Anthem before a sporting event and everyone turning their attention to the American Flag. I love taking pictures of huge flags as they wave in the wind.  I love flag poles lined up in a row. I love flying my flag off the front porch!
.... the home of the free and the brave!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Flag Swag

Today's post is a before and after.... and using the American Flag as part of my front porch decorations,  I think it 'sticks' with the theme of this weeks LIFE'S simple pleasures.
We had a pretty rough winter here in the Midwest. 
And because a late arrival of Spring, some of our bushes and yard really took it hard. 
Not that I've doctored these photos above, but there is a real drab feel and gloominess, it's apparent!
Actually, the grass is tampered with.  We started shaving back some of this planting area and I decided to take a before picture, so we placed the sod back down.  And for another reason as well, it was supposed to rain and we would have left pure dirt for the dogs to walk about... as we weren't getting the mulch for another day or too!
But I think the picture speaks volumes.  A little sad and worn out!
But we had a vision!  And with a little sweat and a lot of SWEET garden talking, me and the hubster together ....we brightened our little corner of the yard!  New bushes, perennials, rocks, stepping stones, mulch and the ever fun BLUE MAN gnome! And of course, our American Flag flying proudly off the front porch!
Of course everything looks better with sunSHINE!!!!
And adding little American flags to my potted plants is something I've done for the past 5 years.  It looks beautiful and I feel patriotic. These are new pots too that I purchased at Sam's club for $16 each.  I love the rich brown color and it makes everything inside 'pop'!!!

"I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all"

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Painted Stars Shine

What so proudly we hailed...
I am in Week #22 of LIFE'S simple pleasures and I can't express with enough words what an exciting journey this has been for me!  I hope that you have enjoyed all the different things I've highlighted and have attempted to enjoy the simple things in our lives.
Way back in January when I started this project, I wasn't sure if I would be able to find ideas for 52 weeks or an entire year, or if I would be able to keep up with my daily writing, and then add to that keeping up with additional creativity of all my other fun projects, insert a few online classes & books that are helping me to achieve my year of...LIFE!
As many of you know, the longest job I've ever held is coming to a close at the end of summer.  My daily interaction of being a mom to my two children will forever change as we send our youngest off to college.  I must admit that it is totally bittersweet, and I have sat here typing my post too many times with tears streaming down my face.  Tears for my fears of the unknown of what I am supposed to do next... I don't have a plan... I don't have another dream...I am seeking God's help in finding HIS next purpose for me!
Tears of joy and sadness, fear, hope, anxiety of what my next step will be!!!
I guarantee I will touch on this subject more, because it's who I am right now... such an emotional being.... but I've also learned on this journey that by being a creative person... it's part of my nature to EXPRESS myself... to show off... to get excited when I've designed something... I never even knew was possible!!!
If you wear your emotions on your sleeve you have to learn to take the good and take the bad from the reactions of those around you... because most people don't care if you are being true to your nature, and you have to find it within yourself to be proud of who you are.
It makes me happy when things come together and they click.  Ideas, greeting cards, a delicious recipe, beautiful blossoms in the garden, a fun & easy doodle, a heartfelt poem, a great blog posting, a good hair day.... :0)
I'm learning to paint.  Maybe it's a metaphor for really seeing LIFE for what it is, accepting people for who they are, and finding the pleasures in even the smallest of things. ALL of these things which are REALLY hard to do when you are not feeling your best self, I must admit!
I'm not being formally taught to paint, but I'm being inspired and I'm practicing....and I'm keeping up with my he♥ART Journal.... and so today, I thought I would show you my painting of the American Flag from the cropped photo that I posted yesterday... I love taking LIFE pictures from the front porch of my house.
I am allowed to nurture my artist.
And I am so proud.
I am proud to be an American!  I am proud of who my children have become. I am proud to be Jeff's wife and my parents' child.  I am proud to be one of God's children. THIS is a good place to be!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Banner of the Free

Sure I wave the American flag. Do you know a better flag to wave? Sure I love my country with all her faults. I'm not ashamed of that, never have been, never will be ~ John Wayne
Downtown Chicago 2012
I've always been interested in photography.  I love to capture the moment.  I enjoy the composition and trying to feel what I see through the lens.  One theme that I enjoy since the 'new age' of digital photography has been our American Flag.

The Stars and Stripes in all their glory... waving in the wind... instill a sense of pride and hope in me!

Off the front porch
Our current flag was designed in 1958 by an 18 year old high school student Robert Heft.  It's noted that he received a B- for his project.  However, I think if the public graded him, it would be definitely an A as the most recognized symbol of the USA.
The colors of the flag are strictly defined: 
  • Dark Red (Pantone 193 c) - for our hardiness and valour
  • White(Pantone Safe) - for our purity & innocence
  • Blue (281 c) - for our vigilance, perseverance & justice
One nation indivisible
Iowa City Hawkeye Football Fall 2012
The national flag of the United States consists of 13 equal horizontal stripes of red, alternating with white, to represent the original 13 colonies that declared independence from Britain. The blue rectangle in the upper left, the canton or union, holds 50 small 5 point stars that represent the 50 states that make up our country.
With digital ease, I can take hundreds of pictures of our beautiful flag.  It is a great subject and never has a bad side.  It always looks distinguished.  I am proud to see it before any event and see people stand before it.
Week #22- LIFE'S simple pleasures - the American Flag

Patriot: the person who can holler the loudest without knowing what he is hollering about.


Monday, May 27, 2013

Old Glory

The American flag, Old Glory, standing tall and flying free over American soil for 228 years is the symbol of our beloved country. It is recognized from near and afar, and many lives have been lost defending it ~ Jeff Miller
Navy Pier - Chicago Illinois
Formally known as Decoration Day, today, and yearly on the final Monday in May, we celebrate Memorial Day and remember all the men and women who died while serving in the armed forces.

Week #22 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - the American Flag

We see the national flag of the United States of America on public buildings and private homes all across our country.  It is a powerful symbol of Americanism.  And is known as Old Glory, Stars & Stripes and the Star Spangled Banner.

Thank you to all the brave men and women who served our country... and an even greater thanks to their family members.

And I’m proud to be an American,
where at least I know I’m free.
And I wont forget the men who died,
who gave that right to me
... Lee Greenwood

It's a Toss Up

She colored her thoughts with only the BRIGHTEST hues....
Finishing off Week #21 LIFE'S simple pleasures - graduation day
The day has finally arrived, come and gone... and my youngest has graduated from high school with honors.  We are so very proud of her!
You're off to great places, today is your day, your mountain is waiting, so get on your way ~ Dr. Suess
There are extremes to every tradition when it comes to such ceremonies. 
I noticed while looking up information on graduations  that there are some schools that will NOT allow students from defacing the top of their mortarboard.  Some schools encourage their students' individuality of expressing yourself on the top of your cap. Another school will withhold a diploma to a student who tosses it up in the air during the ceremonies conclusion.  If there is excessive celebration from family members when the students' name is announced, the graduation certificate can be withheld.  With all it's pomp and circumstance throughout the years.... rules have been broken and new traditions have been started.
The tradition of throwing graduation caps in the air is saying goodbye to a chapter in one's life and essentially saying hello to another chapter in one's life, getting set to begin the quest for the next milestone.
The process of finishing 4 years of school while turning into a young adult makes high school graduation an important rite of passage.
Week #21 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - graduation

Friday, May 24, 2013

Class of 2013

Week #21 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - graduation day!
Stay tuned..... more to come!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Pick Yourself Up and Dust Yourself Off

Promise me you'll always remember... you're BRAVER than you believe, STRONGER than you seem, and SMARTER than you think ~ 
Christopher Robins to Pooh
Kyle's official graduation picture in 2011.

There are so many things to hear during a commencement address.  A commencement speech is typically given by a notable figure in the community, during the commencement exercise.

What an honor to be asked to give a speech at a graduation, but also a great task to find words that resonate to each student.  Will the graduate be able to soak it all in and take what they learned and apply it to the next stage in their life? 

I did a google search speeches and here are just some of the titles I found: We all Breathe the Same Air, What We Wish to Become, Be in the Moment, Find What you Love, Attitude.

One thing I seemed to read over and over in the again in the speeches was something like, go ahead and break the rules.  Although I'm not surprised, it's seems to go against the training we received for 13-17 years.... follow all the rules. Now you are supposed to break free and you should question all things before you.  You have earned that right! is part of what Conan O'Brien said to a graduating class at Harvard...."So, that's what I wish for all of you: the bad as well as the good. Fall down, make a mess, break something occasionally. And remember that the story is never over."

Nora Ephron a well known writer spoke at Wellsley College in 1996 and in her speech she told the graduates, "I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there."

Do Not
there is no
~ Yoda

Follow your dreams, it takes courage, learn from yesterday, don't look back, reach for the stars, make mistakes, be the change, breathe,  today is your day, put one foot in front of the other, it is possible.... so much to take in!!!

And if you stumble... make it a part of the dance!

Week #21 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - graduating

Congratulations class of 2013

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Hats Off to Grads

There is a good reason they call these ceremonies 'commencement exercises'. Graduation is not the end, it's the beginning. ~ Orin Hatch
Jeff - graduation day Indiana State University
The mortarboard is the square academic cap that graduates wear on their head.  It is similar in appearance to the hawk used by brick layers to hold mortar. The tassel is a bunch of loose threads or cords bound at one end and hanging free at the other. Accademic dress is the proper way to describe the gown or robe worn by the graduating student.

Why do graduating students wear academic dress for the ceremony?  It all started in the often unheated buildings of the middle ages, long gowns were necessary for scholars to ward off the cold.
Tassels are usually worn on the right side and shifted to the left when graduates receive their diplomas. Men should remove their caps during the school song and the National Anthem.
The colors of this special garb used to signify the areas of study, but now reflect more of the schools colors.

Here are my husband and I.  It's kismet that although we were born and raised in separate towns and states, both of us went to schools where our 'colors' were green and gold... and we wore green gowns with gold tassels.  Jeff went to Benton Central High School, home of the Bisons and I went to J.I. Case High School, home of the Eagles.

Week #21 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - graduating

You're off to great places
today is your day
Your mountain is waiting
so get on your way
~ Dr. Suess

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Worth the Hassle

A graduation ceremony is an event where the commencement speaker tells thousands of students dressed in identical caps and gowns that 'individuality' is the key to success.

I am just fascinated at this time of year saluting the graduate. There are so many talented, smart and well rounded young people spotlighted.  It's well deserved!
It's a major LIFE milestone.
It is such an accomplishment!
The thing that makes me smile most, is seeing a new to me trend... I think it occurred a bit after my kids hit grade school... but the kindergarten graduation pictures.  Yes, they are adorable.... but 'say what???' Little 5 year olds in cap and gown with a diploma!!!
In my day.... we rented everything for a small fee... the cap, the gown... in my case it looked like I had a special collar in school colors (green/gold) and then we purchased the tassel for a keepsake from Jostens.
The tassel is worth the hassle.
Can you imagine getting your kindergartner all set up in a cap and gown and then paying for special pictures?? What will graduation day be like for them in 13 years when they graduate from highschool!  I can't even imagine!
Yes I know I'm cheap... more like frugal.... but the amount of money you have to pay for those special duds and now you get to keep it!  Rent them or pay a bit more if you want them. Why keep the gown.... after Saturday I will have 3 graduation gowns, two in maroon and one in black! Guys don't care about keeping that stuff...hmmm, I guess we could make an interesting costume out of it?? How many years do I store them until it's okay to donate?
Graduation day is tough for adults. They go to the ceremony as parents. They come home as contemporaries. After twenty-two years of child-raising, they are unemployed.   Erma Bombeck

Monday, May 20, 2013

Shoot for the Moon

It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are  ~  E.E. Cummings
Week #21 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - graduating
It's that time of the year.... graduation, the end of May and beginning of June.  I am seeing all kinds of advertisements and decorations and gifts, sales and celebrations for grads and Dads. 
Caps and gowns and pictures from high school graduation ceremonies don the front pages of the local newspaper. It really is a major accomplishment to graduate..... from kindergarten to first grade... 8th grade to high school.... high school and then.... college!!!!
Graduating is the action of receiving or conferring an academic degree or the ceremony where students become graduates. Above is one of the few graduation pictures I have of myself in my cap and gown.  I'll have to search for the date, but we graduated in June of 1982. (Just because it will bug me until I find out.... I'll guess June 11... but I'll go find it some where)
Graduation cards are always something fun to make.  I often base the card off the school colors and the school mascot.  And I love searching for inspiring quotes.... but it's all about the cash inside isn't it???

Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss it you will land among the stars  - Les Brown
When I was a teachers' aide, the quote above is what I would sign in the kids' yearbooks.  I was fortunate enough to have a few kids ask me to sign.  They probably didn't get it with their 7th grade mind... but maybe they'll look back through their yearbook one day and think of me... for that brief moment I was a part of their life!
Graduating may not be that simple.... but it sure is a big pleasure in LIFE.
LEARN from yesterday
LIVE for today
HOPE for tomorrow.

Friday, May 17, 2013

176 Cloudy Days

A cloudy day is no match for a sunny disposition ~ William Arthur Ward
I guess no matter what the weather brings, if you have an upbeat appreciation and attitude toward things.... nothing will bring you down.  That's a great way to look at things, but I think it is also at times hard to live by that quote.
Does the weather affect our mood? Some may wake up to a cloudy, rainy sky and feel it's no reason to get up and out of bed.  But if the sun is shining and the birds are chirping, it sure helps getting up and out of bed a bit easier.
Chicago has it's fair share of cloudy days.  One page of statistics that I checked out broke down an average year here in the mid west: 84 clear days, 105 partially cloudy days, 176 cloudy days. We may have more reasons to snuggle up under the covers than the average person in the Sunshine State.
Remember, if it weren't for the clouds, you wouldn't appreciate the sun.
I think I could handle the partial cloudiness here in Punta Cana, any day.  Sunny days you think of happy people, you can easily visualize fun music and good times!
Week #20 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - Clouds

What's the sky look like in your neck of the woods? 
Sometimes we have to bring our own sunshine! 
Take some time real soon and if you have clouds up in the sky, have fun and see what shapes they form.

I like one of the manifestos of the Cloud Appreciation Society :

We pledge to fight ‘blue-sky thinking’ wherever we find it.
Life would be dull if we had to look up at
cloudless monotony day after day

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Things are Looking Up!

Red Sky at night,
sailor's delight
Red sky at morning,
sailors warning
How different my picture would be if this sky would be in the middle of winter.

I am so happy to have sunSHINE! Four days in a row when I am highlighting clouds (sky) in this weeks' simple pleasures.

Have you taken a moment... and just looked up... take it all in? Do you see endtrails from a plane so far up?

You can even see clouds at night... think of those eery Halloween scenes. Bats flying up to the moon as a few clouds pass by.

There is so much to see!

No sight is more provocative of awe than is the night sky. ~Llewelyn Powys

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Get Your Head IN the CLOUDS

The clouds drift across the bright blue sky--all except one. Little Cloud trails behind. He is busy changing shapes to become a fluffy sheep, a zooming airplane, and even a clown with a funny hat. Eric Carle
Clouds are so commonplace that their
beauty is often overlooked.
They are for dreamers and their contemplation
 benefits the soul.
Indeed, all who consider the shapes they see
in them will save
on psychoanalysis bills.
This is one of the manifestos for The Cloud Appreciation Society. Yes!  There is a society to join in appreciation of clouds. They have 6 guidelines on their website.
If you are a Nephelococcygia, you are a cloud watcher.  Have you ever layed in the grass and just gazed up to the sky and tried to identify shapes floating by?  Maybe you did it, or you've done it with your kids or grand kids. It is a wonderful simple pleasure.  Easy and free.  Easier to do in the park on a blanket or the beach on a towel.  It might look kind of funny in the middle of  busy street...but you might start a trend.... stop, drop and watch!
We pledge to fight ‘blue-sky thinking’ wherever we find it.
Life would be dull if we had to look up at
cloudless monotony day after day.
Week #20 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - Clouds
Take a moment real soon and ....
Look up, marvel at the ephemeral beauty, and live life with your head in the clouds!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Sky's the Limit

Blue Skies
Smiling at me
Nothing but blue skies
Do I see ~ Irving Berlin
Oh no, did I make a mistake in stating that Week #20 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - Clouds?   Maybe on some things I have to broadening my topic.... the sky's the limit!  Instead of....
Bows and flows of angel hair
and ice cream castles in the air
and feather canyons everywhere
I've looked at clouds that way ~ Joni Mitchell
The sky is the daily bread of the eyes.
Maybe this weeks' simple pleasure..... again, is to just take a moment....and breathe... and look up into that sky above and take it all in. 
My sky today is different than your sky above.... even though we are looking up at the same place. It could be a deep blue cloudless sky.... one filled with cotton candy wisps of fast moving mass... you may want to lay in the grass with a favorite someone and see what kind of shapes form right before your eyes..... quick, there is some cloud cover, we can get something might see all the clouds but remind yourself that the sun is still SHINING!  As my husband has often said to me.... on a cloudy day.... "Where's the sun?" it's still there, just covered by a few clouds....wherever you go, no matter the weather, bring your own sunshine .... I've got sunshine....on a cloudy day!  Rain clouds, stormy clouds... cumulus, stratus, cirrus.... liquid droplets suspended in the atmosphere above the surface of our planet.
I believe I can fly
I believe I can touch the sky ~ R.Kelly

Monday, May 13, 2013

It's UP in the SKY

Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher a storm, but to add COLOR to my sunset sky ~ R. Tugore
Week #20 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - CLOUDS
I can't believe how many different kinds of comments and postings I saw about Mother's Day.  I guess we've all come to a great understanding and need to appreciate our Moms!
This week I thought I would take on what I'm thinking is a simple and free LIFE'S pleasure, clouds... all you have to do is look up and see them.... maybe.
If you are fortunate to be having a glorious sun shined filled day... relish the blue skies, soak it in and wonder how far your eye is taking you!  If you are having a rainy day... raise your face up and feel the drops on your face and know that the earth is being nourished.
Whatever your sky looks like today... look up. Breathe in and out.  If you are having a tough day... Every cloud has its sliver lining... a hopeful or comforting prospect in the midst of difficulty.
A cloud appears white because it reflects the light of the sun and all the colors of the rainbow added up... become white!
The sky, a perfect empty canvas, offers clouds nonetheless. They shift and drift and beg interpretation... such is the nature of art. ~Jeb Dickerson

Friday, May 10, 2013

Brighten Your Mothers' Day!

Motherhood is a choice you make every day to put someone else's happiness and well being ahead of your own, to teach the hard lessons, to do the right thing even when you're not sure what the right thing is... and to forgive yourself over and over again for doing everything wrong ~ Donna Bell
My husband is in the red in the front and his mom is standing behind him at the back end of the table, the rest of the family ... his sister, grandmother and brother, Dad must be taking the picture!
Motherhood is a very special job.  Just because you can biologically have children doesn't make you a mother... according to a quote by Oprah Winfrey.  It's also a very tough job, creating something out of these little humans.
I don't understand why women say
"I'm JUST a mom"
remind me again which job on the planet is more important...
~ Susan Hallum
Me and my mom

... when in doubt, choose the kids.  There will be plenty of time later to choose work ~ Anna Bundlien

Week # 19 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - honoring Motherhood

Although I think I need to thank my mom and my mother-in-law so much more for how they raised my husband and I... I look at my own children and don't need that much thanks, because I was doing the best job I could... the best job ever... the job I'm most proud to admit... I'm their mother!!

Being called MOM is the greatest blessing!!!

Happy Mother's Day.... if you happen to be a mother!!!! or go BRIGHTEN your MOTHER'S Day!!!!!


Thursday, May 09, 2013

Send Mom the Very Best

The mother-child relationship is paradoxical and, in a sense, tragic. It requires the most intense love on the mother's side, yet this very love must help the child grow away from the mother, and to become fully independent.  ~Erich Fromm

I love flowers!
Do you? 
All kinds of flowers!  Paper flowers, single stemmed flowers, seeds of flowers, potted plants, flowers in the garden, silk flowers, blossoming flowers on the lilac bushes outside my window as I type this!!!!  I am so blessed!!!! Blooms, buds, petals.... love it all....always working on my 'green' thumb!
It has been said that the best way to show your mom you love her is by sending her flowers. Mother's Day is the 2nd busiest holiday for florists behind Valentine's Day.
Years ago, giving your mother a corsage to wear to church was a simple yet elegant way to show your mom how much you loved her!  But that has become passe`.  Since mother's day occurs in the spring, there are so many different choices of great blooms to get her.
A mother laughs our laughs, sheds our tears, returns our love, fears our fears. She lives our joys, cares our cares and all our hopes and dreams she shares.
Week # 19 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - honoring Motherhood
How wonderful life is, when you stop and smell the roses!
Brighten Someone's Day.... send them a bouquet!!
(and a creative greeting!!!!)

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

A Million Ways

The JOY in motherhood comes in moments.  There will be hard times and frustrating times, but amid the challenges there are shining moments of joy & satisfaction.
I have had this plant sitting on my dresser for almost 9 years.  I still love this little potted plant of pen flowers I got from my daughter who made it in 3rd grade class.  It's those things in motherhood that are so special.  Teachers who help our little ones create something that will sit in our hearts ♥ forever!!

All woman become like their mothers.  That is their tragedy.  No man does.  That's his.
I'm sentimental right now.  I guess I always am.  I have a drawer stuffed with projects and gifts each of the kids made for mothers' day.  How classic is it to have the gold painted macaroni picture;  or a handmade note holder: and the ever sentimenal Popsicle picture frame!!!  I still love them all!
My Mom
My mom is the best
from east to west
My mom cooks
without any books
She cleans my room
and she sings a tune
My mom love art
and is also smart
She always works at school
that's why my mom is cool
Love, Kyle

Poems and stories from the kids in elementary school are so pure.  Sometimes it's sad to think that the memories of those times are so long forgotten... and all they remember as young adults is how you nagged on them to clean their room and write a thank you note to the grandparents!

Week # 19 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - honoring Motherhood

There is no way to be a perfect mother... but a million ways to be a good one.

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

My BEST Job Ever

There are a lot of things to be said of motherhood.  Just make sure the kids are out of earshot first!
As Mother's Day approaches this week, I can't help but reflect on being a mother myself. 

Through my tears and laughter at the same time... my job, the longest one I've held will be coming to an end in a few short months.  I have a great sense of loss.  Oh yes, friends and family have continually told me that my job being a mother will not end... but the  active daily interaction of raising my two children will become history, as the youngest gets ready to go off to college in August. Beware, they do fly back home, the nest doesn't always stay empty. (Someone said to me)

This business of training little humans for life is a mind boggling process.

Be happy!  Know that you raised two wonderful kids who will be an asset to society, productive, smart and kind!

Don't Cry because it's over, smile because it happened. ~ Dr. Seuss

You know, I've realized I've done a lot of good things making the choice to be a full-time stay at home mom for all of these years, but a part of me wonders, what's next? what can I do? who will hire me?
I've been a party planner, a PTA president, a soccer mom, a dance mom, a chauffeur, a boo boo healer, a Halloween costume designer, a chef, a secret shopper, a room parent etc.... In this day and age, I yet to meet many, if any... who then just became 'housewives' after their children flew the coop.  I mean, that's the next step right?? ... you can't just sit at home and be... you need to go out and work!  I truly think that's the big part that I'm struggling with. Foremost, I am so very grateful for the opportunities and choices my husband and I made for me to be a stay-at-home mom, it was the best for our family... but it's ME that is having the hardest transition to the next phase in our lives!
Week # 19 - LIFE'S simple pleasures- honoring Motherhood
Motherhood is not something to do if you can squeeze the time in, it is what God gave you time for.
God does have a purpose for me, that I know!  Now, if you have any advice on what to do for the next chapter, I'm seeking positive solutions.  I'm looking for websites with inspirational words or books of women who've shared their stories after their children fly the coop!  If no one leaves me a comment, just be assured that I'm truly OK with my tears dripping down my face....(It's been a daily occurrence) I do know that I am one proud mother of two and I'm honored to be their mother!!!

Monday, May 06, 2013

Annual Nudge

My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute all my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.

Week #19 - LIFE'S simple pleasures- Honoring Motherhood

Although, just like many other holidays, some people consider Mother's Day a Hallmark Holiday.... created for the commercial-ism.  Anna Jarvis is noted for founding the FIRST mother's day back in 1908, a way to honor all mothers.  It is marked on the calendar as the 2nd Sunday in May. Do you need an annual nudge to remind you how special your mother is or the great memories of her love that you remember?

However, Miss Jarvis was not too happy how celebrations and honoring our Moms changed in the early 1920's.  Here's a quote:  A printed card means nothing except that you are too lazy to write to the woman who has done more for you than anyone in the world. And candy! You take a box to Mother—and then eat most of it yourself. A pretty sentiment.
—Anna Jarvis
Free enterprise is always thriving around this time of year.... getting in on the bandwagon besides Hallmark is AT&T (years ago it was the most popular day for long distance calling) and FTD, flowers are the most popular gift to give mom!
So, should we honor motherhood only one day of the year?  Or do you honor her in no particular way, or on any one particular day, she is always in your heart, wherever you go?
The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new. ~Rajneesh

Friday, May 03, 2013

I Know Where you HIDE your Cache

It's easy once you know where to look!
That tiny phrase is one of sweetness to a geocacher's ears. 
I hope this week I intrigued you a bit about our newest hobby, Geocaching!
If you haven't been following along every day this week, just scroll down and see what
Week #18 - LIFE'S simple pleasures - Geocaching is all about.
Although we've done it for only a short time, I stumbled upon a forum of Geocaching quotes that all made sense to me. You will find them scattered through this post and italicized.
I took the hard way in and the easy way out!
This one pictured above with the hubster is a DNF... did not find.  We'll have to go back there and maybe with more knowledge we will find the hidden cache!  Could it be in the drainage culvert, or in a fake rock????
If it weren't for Geocaching we would never have found this wonderful place.

Squish, Squish, Squish.... lots of rain days before, made this field on the way to the cache (cash) very messy.  But look at all of the beautiful sunshine!!
To hide is the beginning
To find is the result
To seek is the adventure
We plan on doing more Geocaching this year.  And I will certainly take more pictures!!! And log my adventures!   Maybe we will hide our own first cache.  And we will probably continue saying to each other as we walk past the same tree stump for the umpteenth time...
Is it gone or am I terrible at this??
It will make our Sunday drives a little better when we can say... We're lost, but we're making good time!

That can't be it! 
And I say, yes it can, (some are) hidden in plain sight. That bolt on the metal fence post(in the above picture) is the actual micro cache. Someone manufactures things like that with screw in capsules and heavy magnets so they can be used specifically for Geocache hides.  Is that crazy or what?  Crazy fun, for sure!!!
It surely has made us look at our surroundings a bit differently.  We almost can't drive by a cemetery and say 'Hey, wouldn't that be a perfect spot to hide a cache?'
I use multi-million dollar satellites to find Tupperware in the woods.  What's your hobby?


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