Monday, July 29, 2013

Monday-10:15am: Family Visit

I remembered to take pictures--so you are forewarned--LOL!  My mom and dad (Jane and Kelly)...
 ...and my brother and his wife (Blaine and Kathy) arrived at my place.  We gabbed for a couple of hours here and then headed over to Dagan and Leah's.
I haven't been there since spring, myself, so I am amazed at how many more houses there are now!  I stood toward the end of their driveway and took pictures.  I started facing to the left... 
...and slowly turned in a circle. 
They're building right across the street now. 
Houses everywhere! 
My dad was taking pictures, too, but when he got in the house he realized his batteries had died!  Dagan and Leah had to cut the weeds in their yard with a scythe!  Been too hot to sod yet.  They'll probably have their cement patio poured and grass by September.  The yard has to be leveled first.  Lot of work to a brand new house.
Those of you who were around a year ago may remember when Dagan and Leah's house was being built and there was nothing else around but one house and one in progress on this other street. 
Talk about a huge neighborhood popping up in no time! 
I was anxious to see the shelf unit they picked up in the Twin Cities at IKEA.  It is so cool!  Fits exactly into that spot. 
They're using Ariel's table and chairs as long as she moved in.  Might as well wait to buy a dining room table and not have even more to store. 
Dagan and Leah chatting with Kathy.  Blaine is petting Sammy. (Never saw Annie all day, their black cat who's shy.)  
This is the main room of the house..., dining room, and... room.  (You may notice a plate mounded high on the end of the counter--Leah made some chocolate chip cookies that morning and I even got a few sent home with me, too.)
Off behind the kitchen through the archway is a small hallway with a bathroom...
...and the pantry!! 
This pantry is a dream for anyone who cooks and bakes! 
And very organized, of course. 
Then we made our way upstairs on the tour.  Ariel was sleeping (works nights).  We tried to be quiet, but I am shocked we didn't wake her up.  We tend to be loud and all talk over each other (but we can follow more than one conversation at a time--no lie!).  Quite disconcerting to people who aren't used to quite that volume of gregariousness!  ;)  
At the top of the stairs they have bookcases now... 
...and a plant and Ariel's desk.  There's a smaller bedroom and then...
...Dagan and Leah's bedroom on the back end of the house. 

You go through the walk-in closet to get to the bathroom.  This is the short wall of the closet... 
...and this is the other deeper side. 
I love those red sinks! 
I was taking pictures of all of us in the bathroom and it suddenly cracked me up...
....picturing the seven of us trying to stand and talk in my bathroom--ROFL! 
My dad was standing by the door to the "water closet".  ;) 
I took a couple pictures out a second story window.  That's a newer church across the field--and just to the right... 
...are all the houses crammed around the soy bean field. 
On the other side of the upstairs is Ariel's bedroom (right where I am standing, actually) and on the right hand side of the hallway are... 
...a bathroom... 
...and the laundry room.  (Love the terra cotta walls!) 
At the end of the hall is the tall room with the three little windows you see outside from the front of the house. 
This is their gaming room. 
Very bright in there. 
They have a group of friends they've been gaming with weekly for many years. 
Their group runs a suite at ValleyCon every October at the gaming convention that's held in Fargo.  (And Dagan and Leah also store stuff for their Valley Con suite out in the garage.) 
Then we made our way down to the unfinished basement.  Some long storage under the entryway hallway. 
 The cat boxes under the stairs.
The main room... 
...all Leah's brother Aaron's things (he just went into the service in December) and more of Ariel's things and some of theirs.
Aaron's furniture makes a spot to sit with a laptop. 
Hard to see--but in the back there where the light is--that's the furnace room. 
I didn't get pictures of their garage, but it is pretty much like this, too.  And why they can't fit any cars in there until they get some of those hanging ceilings for creating "attic" storage in the garage. 
This is the view from the dining room table... 
...where we gabbed and gabbed and ordered in from Granite City (delicious!)...and I totally forgot about the camera after our tour.  :):)  Was a wonderful visit!  I haven't seen Kathy for soooo long!  Now I've seen all my immediate family again.  :)
My sister was busy.  Her son, Joel, who was up last summer with Jozette--well, they're getting married in two weeks!  Dagan and Leah will drive down for the wedding (and take lots of pictures, I hope).  I'm glad I got to meet Jozette, too, last year.  Sweet girl.  :)
So that was the family visit for 2013.  
Have a wonderful week!  :):)
"I find family the most mysterious and fascinating institution in the world."
Amos Oz

Friday, July 26, 2013


I heard that today Mick Jagger is 70 years old.

That got me to googling.

Paul McCartney is 71.
Ringo Starr is 73.
Simon and Garfinkel are both 71.
Bob Dylan is 72.
Joan Baez is 72.
Pete Seeger is 94.
Joni Mitchell is 69.
Cher and Donovan are 67.
David Bowie, Justin Hayward (Moody Blues) and Barry Gibb (BeeGees) are 66.

The years are creeping up on me--LOL!
I don't know how many of you follow the TED talks, but the one that came yesterday really touched me.  I have experienced quite a bit of what she was talking about due to the drastic changes and limitations of my body.  It's difficult sometimes to express what a blessing that has actually been.  I am a different and better person than I would have been without all this pain and being housebound (which I vastly prefer to the term shut-in).  I am lucky.  I am not at the end of life.  (I hope.)  But listening to this young woman speak made my heart leak from my eyes and filled me with hope for us as human beings.

Video from KarmaTube
The hot weather appears to have broken this last week.  Monday it was suddenly 72 degrees!  The nights have been in the 40s to low 60s!  It gets warm by late afternoon-early evening (70s to mid 80s), but then cools off again so that I can have the place open all night and at least half the day.  Been wonderful weather.  Yes, we've had occasional rainstorms, but mostly fat clouds and blue skies.
My folks and my brother and his wife will be driving up tomorrow for a visit and we'll all make a trip over to Dagan and Leah's new house, of course.  I should put my camera in my bag today so I don't forget.  Of course, that's no guarantee that I'll remember to take it out and use it while I'm there--LOL!  ;)
Miss Karma wasn't feeling well yesterday.  Threw up her morning canned three sessions...but she's been doing okay since then.  She seems to have had a touchy stomach lately...just smaller amounts of her dry food before yesterday.  But right now she's on the recliner with me...under the laptop table...pawing at me for a neck scratch...and purring.  I decided, after all that carpet scrubbing, to limit the variety in her dry foods. 
Been a quiet week.  Lots of reading.  Dagan and Leah were over Tuesday night for a while.  :)  Baked another loaf of bread in the machine yesterday--light crust setting.  This time it was a "country" bread recipe with milk and an egg from the Oster pamphlet.  Pretty funny looking loaf--LOL!  
Still has a hefty crust but it tastes good.  I am thrilled to have this bread machine!  Thanks Dagan and Leah!!  
(Not that they read my blog.)
Been doing a lot of cloud watching.  I especially love the big fluffy amazing clouds!  I remember lying on my back in the dry long prairie grass and watching them laze or race across the sky.  I have been gazing out my window every day...and smiling.  I'll leave you with clouds.  Some of these were just minutes apart.  The sky is always changing when it holds the gift of clouds.

"In the midst of gathering darkness, light becomes more evident."
Bonnie Bostrom