Friday, October 14, 2016


Good Afternoon!
Here I am posting over a week later when I thought I'd be back much sooner--LOL!
Well, this time it was because I was just plain busy.  Isn't that marvelous?!  It's always nice to feel better after you've been without many spoons for a while--LOL!
Let's see...I think I will just go through the pictures as they were taken and here we go.  First of all these are the two pair of Crocs I bought this year.  I so loved the sandals that I thought I'd get a slip on black pair for winter.  
Well, these are the same size--in fact the ones on the left are also wide--but the toes were so scrunched that they hurt my feet.  Luckily Leah could wear them.  :)  I guess I need wide in the toes.  I like very comfortable shoes.  My scrunchy toe days are over--LOL!
Once in a while I get a McFamily video chat on google hangout. 
Ian was showing us how his blue car could fly. 
He seems to like to chat with Gramma.  
She really likes to visit with him, too. 
The grouse come by once in a while, but I don't see them every day... 
... like I do the hungry flock of sparrows.  :)
Ian was also over for a visit... 
...and we all had fried rice. 
Leah was here for crafts Monday night and we did work on cutting, folding, and taping cards together.  We will continue this Monday, too.  :) 
 I bought some printer paper for laser jet printers.  I heard it was supposed to be good for fountain pens.  (Our regular printer paper here in the US is usually terrible.)  Some people said 24# and some said 32# so I bought one ream of each.  Then I did the fountain pen testing.
The 24# on the left will bleed through if you put down enough ink, but the 32# didn't. 
I do normally use fine and extra fine nibs and so I shouldn't have a problem with the 24#.  I will try it out on some letters soon, of course.  ;)
Speaking of paper...
I have wanted to try the Seven Seas Nanami journals made with Tomoe River paper.  The "standard" one comes unlined/blank.  I thought I'd try the very cheap plastic sleeve cover for now.  (Might want the faux-leather cover later if I love these for my daily journaling as much as I expect to.) 
They even come in a box sleeve to protect the fragile paper and with a pink blotter sheet, too. 
Sewn binding--so it lies flat. 
I took some scrapbook paper and cut a couple pieces to slide inside of the clear plastic cover.  There was enough left over to cut some simple bookmarks, too. 
A 12 X 12 inch sheet was not large enough to wrap around the journal but it basically covered the front and back.  If the pieces of card stock flop about too much I can add a strip of something to connect them later on.  I have a ways to go in my present daily journal, but I can hardly wait to start this one! 
Leah had printed me off some writing guide sheets so I trimmed one down to fit the Seven Seas journal. 
It doesn't look like it, but you can see the guide pretty easily. 
I also have been working on a new format in my Bullet Journal with the awesome forms Leah made for me on excel.  :)  This is just the beginning--but I now will have a monthly calendar spread... 
...and a new monthly tracker, too. 
In November I do plan to try out a larger weekly spread that will take up four pages per week--half a page for each day and for the weekly goal list.   
Obviously, I have a ways to go before November is filled in and ready to go--but that is the skeletal work I have finished so far.  I also painted (acrylics) some stickers that I plan to use to label the days of the week.
One of the other forms Leah made for me was a numbered lined small monthly sheet that I can use to write down birthdays and attach to these divider cards. 
I have kept handmade cards for quite a few years in a large, deep ArtBin satchel.  This is where I will keep the birthday cards (separated by the months now), too.
I love it!!  But it is getting so full I need another one--LOL! 
And actually--we decided that this is how we should store all the birthday and Christmas cards we have been making.  So, they had them for cheaper than usual on Amazon and two of them are supposed to arrive today Leah told me.  Whoohoo!  One for Christmas cards and one for birthday and thank you cards.
I think I also just might need another slim satchel for washi tapes... think?  LOL! 
Oh, and here's the paper we ordered from Joann's at the sale price!  The fodder for more Christmas cards and birthday cards--tada!!  
 On Tuesday the library girl, Kirsten, was here.  Both the books I requested were ILLs (inter-library loans) so the only way I can get them is if Dagan and/or Leah picks them up and drops them off for me.  So when Leah dropped off the papers and excel forms on Wednesday we figured out how that will work.  The easiest way will be for Dagan and Leah to just get library cards for the West Fargo library since they live there.  
Oh, and Leah also put me on the Google Project-Fi cell phone new family plan, too.  I'll save another $5.00!  
Let's see--what else?
Oh, I have a link HERE to the magnetic strip McFamily is selling on Amazon.  And no I don't get anything for posting a link--LOL!  But you can see my 6 inch cast iron skillet assisting in its online debut--ROFL!  
I also do have New Life coming for a donation pick-up on Tuesday morning.  Nice!  All that stuff in the garage will be gone, I hope.  (They can reject items.)
I have been having such fun with the bullet and the other new forms Leah made and the paper testing--whoohoo!  The new card satchels should be here this afternoon, too!  An entire day can zip by for me puttering with this kind of thing.  I take a body break and then I am right back at it...over and over.  I tell myself, this is the last session...take an even longer break...but then I find myself puttering just a little bit more--LOL!  Even got the shower curtain hemmed and that has been on my list for about three weeks--hehe!  Yes, all that fun is catching up with me so I know I won't get in as much fun-putter time today...but you know I will get in some, youbetcha!
Have a fun, delightful weekend!!  :) :) 
"Find ecstasy in life; the mere sense of living is joy enough."
Emily Dickinson

Thursday, October 06, 2016


Being away for two weeks...well, this is going to be like one huge long letter...but with pictures--LOL!  Grab a cuppa...maybe a whole meal...and here we go.  :)
Oh!  First of all, why have I been gone so long when I normally don't go longer than about a week inbetween posts?  Well, when I go out and about I am always borrowing spoons against the next day (or 2 or 3 days, depending on what I am doing while I am out).  Even when it is something fun--makes no difference--I am borrowing against the future.  So, I just needed time to recover and build up some spoons after visiting Miss Annie for a week.  For those of you who were concerned and emailed me...that's all it was.  Nothing wrong.  Not sick or anything.  Just normal stuff.  :)
But I do have lots to share from the last couple weeks!
I got roses from McFamily as a thank you for taking care of Annie before they even left for Hilton Head Island in South Carolina!  The box was pretty mangled this time so there were a few stray petals as I was trimming and putting them in, naturally, Miss Karma had to rush over to claim the packaging and petals.
I didn't think Leah was going to send cut flowers anymore... 
...but they prettied up the place for over a week. 
I forgot to put them up one night and woke up to green puke from a certain leaf-stealing cat I know.
Before they left Dagan came and borrowed my 6-inch cast iron skillet so they could use it for professional photos to show how strong their magnetic strip is that McFamily is selling on Amazon.  You know--one of those strips you can hang knives on in the kitchen or spices in metal cans or anything else you can think of to use them for.  Theirs is really strong--goodness! 
Dagan surprised me--showed me a second item they are selling...wooden utensils and a holder.  I forgot to get pictures of it out of the box but got some at their place when I was over with Annie.  This one is silver and black. 
I'll post links when everything is up.  :)
Anyways, McFamily left on Saturday and I went to see Annie Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday...and brought the car back on Sunday so I could see my little buddy, Ian.  I spent extra time with Annie because she was lonesome and missing Sammy, so I was usually there 2-4 hours.
They're working away on that new bigger church in the field behind their house.  
The field of wild grasses is going to seed.  Weather has turned cold.  We might have frost/freezing the next two nights. 
Anyways, here is a white and green version of the utensils and holder.  The handles are built right in so that you can set them on the counter and they are automatically propped up off the countertop. 
They can be hung either direction on the holder.  
I didn't even know Dagan and Leah were doing more kitchen items.  Cool!
Anyways, when I was over there I also saw this card the Vet Clinic sent when Sammy died.  Very nice of them. 
While I was visiting Miss Annie (and no I didn't manage to get a picture of her--not for lack of trying--because she is so skittish)...
 ...McFamily was busy on the beach with their feet in the sand.  :)
Ian looks so small in all that vastness! 
He and Daddy having a great time in the pool. 
Looks like a beautiful island! 
They had a good time... you can see.  :) 
I love these pictures of Ian walking with Mama and Daddy at the ocean's edge... 
...Ian watching the waves come and go... 
...and playing in the sand with Mama. 
What a great trip! 
Meanwhile, back at the ranch...LOL!
The grouse come by now and again.  Sometimes just a couple of them and sometimes this group of six. 
That Tuesday McFamily was gone Kirsten came from the library.  She brought me the next Cat Who book and we had quite a while to chat alone in the community room after everybody left.  Kirsten also has fibro and was forced (by her body) to quit college, too, last spring!  So we had a lot to chat about.  (And I have to finish my book before this coming Tuesday--LOL!)
Navarre wandered in at one point and I remarked that he hadn't been down yet to take pictures of my buckling floor.  He said he asked someone else to come down (maintenance man?), but I told him no one has come down yet.  I told him that if I am not the only one and this is an issue of improper installation that the owners would need to deal with the construction company.  Well, that made Navarre very uncomfortable and he was gone in no time--ROFL!
Oh, and BTW--the trying to cover the buckling area with the piece of plastic didn't work because it just moved around all the time.  :(  Oh well.  I tried.  But I'd need to get a big mat like for a desk chair or something and I am not going to invest money into this.
LOL!  When I was sticking a netflix DVD into the player... 
...Karma scooted in the cabinet and made herself to home. 
She could still watch the birds from there.  :)
These are my new cookbooks from over the last few months--both vegan and wholefood plant based. 
The worst one is Superfood Soups.  I thought--I love could that not be a good cookbook, right?  Well, the ingredients are just crazy!!  I don't know how I'd ever find a lot of these.  Like--(I am randomly flipping through)--maca powder, crodyceps powder, sea buckthorn juice, camu berry powder, dried goldenberries, yacon syrup, dried goji berries, green harissa, chaga powder, reishi powder, ground sumac, edible flowers, hachiya persimmons, dried pasilla, black forbidden rice...endless ingredients I've never heard of!  And there are tons of asian ingredients I do recognize, but don't normally have sitting around in my pantry.  Not practical for me, at all.  I am going to donate that one, but the rest of the cookbooks have promise.
As you know, I had such culinary disasters that I stuck with some tried and true cooking last week.  I made a lentil-veggie soup...well, more like a stew really.  That was vegan...with some almond milk on the side.  
I am almost finished with the big pot I made.  Perfect weather for some hot soup...
...and fresh bread.
Now this was not vegan or WFPB.  Just regular oatmeal bread with butter and dry milk in the bread machine recipe.
That last sagging loaf...well, I thought the birds were eating it.  Turns out the wind had blown the little cubes away because the next time I put some out it wasn't windy and the only thing left the next morning was a patio scattered with bread cubes.  Not even the birds would eat it--ROFL!!
There are not many recipes for bread--even vegan bread.  I am still searching around and will keep trying new recipes.  :)
I have been all psyched up about starting a new bullet journal in 2017.  I've been using the same one for two years I have been feeling more myself and able to get more done.  Time for a change.
I bought a squared or graph Leuchtturm1917 journal to start in January 2017.  They have perforated pages at the back (which do not tear out easily) so I took out a bunch and did a lot of testing on them.
Even used paint pens, markers, leafing pens...
...all my fountain pens, drawing pens, gel pens... I could see what bleeds through and what doesn't.
Copic markers, sharpies, and eraser board pens are terrible.  No surprise there.  But otherwise, the paper did really well.  Ghosting but little bleed-through.
I started experimenting on these last three months of this year as to how to change up the format before I start a new bullet.  One of the annoying things is that instead of plain all the way to the top of the page like they have in their dot-gridded journals:
...the squared version (and the lined version) has these most annoying dates...
...on every corner of both sides of the page!  Why?! 
So that was the other thing I was trying out on the above pages--how to cover up the "Datum/Date" on every page.  I tried sharpie and paint markers...but the easiest solution was using a narrower washi tape across the top to cover them up.  When you bullet you want to be using the top for writing headers and such.  So I will be using a lot more washi tape--LOL!
Okay--I just took the pictures of the journal corners and there was a man waiting for his dog to poop by my patio--ROFL!! 
Anyways, this is taking all day to write--LOL!  It is now 5:15pm.  Leah contacted me via Google Hangouts.  When she was here for crafts Monday night I was showing her all this really exciting (only to me) bullet journal stuff and she said she could make up on Excel some of the graphs and things I was planning to make by hand and copy for my bullet journal.  So I just spent a big chunk of the afternoon with Leah and Ian via Mr. Rusty while Leah asked me lots of questions, we both took lots of measurements, and she made up a monthly calendar spread similar to this one below (now I won't buy them for my Franklin Covey anymore--tada!)...
...a monthly tracker similar to this one on the left side below...
...some writing guide sheets, and a monthly tracker for birthday cards, too!!!  OMG!!!  I'll show them to you after she brings them on Monday night.  I am absolutely thrilled!
I am trying out a weekly page spread for October.  Actually writing down weekly goals, too.  (Grabbed the label stickers Leah and I had played around coloring with watercolors a while back to use for the days of the week stickers, too, and liked that idea.)
I used to do the whole week on one page.  This is was the way I did two weeks.
I'm already finding myself possibly running out of room...and am considering going to a four page spread for a week. 
Using the weekly goal list is new, so it might be fine after I adjust to the new set up...but, if not, I will just give myself more room.  Do you know how wonderful it is to need more room for daily tasks?!  Proof that I am finally feeling better.  Even though my "better" is still pretty pathetic--ROFL!!  Happy me!!
Okay, back to this last week.  Leah came over after their vacation this past Monday night and we worked on cutting and folding card bases (on the left hand side) because we weren't feeling up to much else.

Tuesday Caroline brought groceries.

But I have mostly been watching TV series, to be honest.  Had been pretty much exhausted and I spent three days watching The Walking Dead's new season on netflix streaming...then Orphan Black (3) on Amazon Prime streaming (renting season 4 on netflix now)...and just started season 5 of Longmire on netflix streaming.  Whew!  
Been very chilly, like I said.  But we had one 80 degree day on Monday.  I guess that may have been our Indian Summer--LOL!
Too cold now to have the patio door open, but...
...Miss Karma was in heaven watching the sparrow channel on Cat TV.
There.  You are basically all caught up with life in Fargo.  More bullet journal information than you ever wanted...and some wonderful McFamily vacation photos.  Time for dinner.  Have a superb weekend and I hope to be back a lot quicker next time--LOL!  :) :) 
"Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy."
Thich Nhat Hanh