Wednesday, October 25, 2017


I never noticed this before!
Across the way at the other apartment building there were briefly three different colored trees--green, yellow, and red.  Pretty cool! 
Today is definitely picture day!!  Busy Mama sent Gramma a whole bunch of pictures so I picked out a few to share.  ;)  
Looks like Ian thought Liam's hands were in the way of his face for the picture--LOL!
 I love this--Mama, Ian, and Liam on Ian's lap.
Liam spends a lot of time sleeping, of course. 
Look at all that dark hair! 
I wonder if he will keep it. 
Sleeping in Mama's arms. 
Now this little guy surprised me the very first time I visited him after he came home from the hospital with how he could lift his head up off your chest and even push up his chest a little, too.  And he was like a week old!  Strong little guy! 
We all know how hard it is... get a picture of... 
...a wiggly baby--LOL! 
Mr. Ian does absolutely love to eat with his hands. 
I don't know what this is covering his hands and face, but he LOVES any kind of sauces or gravies and will scoop them right up with his fingers. 
He knows to be careful not to touch the table or the chair while he is eating--LOL!
Looks like Ian made a scarf from a long shopping receipt. 
I love this one!  Daddy sleeping on the couch with Liam sleeping on his chest! 
Oh--Gramma forgot what this funny chair is called. 
Liam is only 6 weeks old right now... I'd say he is doing really well.. 
...with the funny chair---LOL!
Sitting up quite nicely!
Lots of family pictures today!!  :)
Sunday Leah stopped for a little bit by after they got all the ValleyCon stuff back in my garage.  Leah and Dagan didn't work the suite this year.  Leah, being the one who knows how it is all set up and put together, just helped with the setting up on Friday and tearing down on Sunday.  But the guest this year was Christopher Judge who played Teal'c on Stargate SG-1 (my favorite character), so McFamily made a trip over on Saturday.  If I can get a copy of the picture of them I will post it.
Monday Leah and Ian popped in with a bag of cat food.  Annie's is from the natural pet store and it is what she's been used to eating for years so they picked up a big bag for me.
And Ian had a toy for Annie--who loves anything with feathers!! 
Its eyes light up blue and flash!  I couldn't catch that in the picture.
Annie wondered what I was doing with her toy and I snuck a picture of her when she didn't think I was paying attention to her--LOL! 
She has been letting me get closer to her before she runs away, though.  ;)  
Okay--what else?  
Supplements.  Well, the turmeric is doing a little something--running to the bathroom more often and my knees are a bit less swollen--LOL!  I will continue to take the turmeric and probably add some Cayenne for inflammation, too, in November to see if that is any additional help or does nothing.  The White Willow Bark doesn't seem to be doing anything for pain that I can tell so next month I am going to try Meadowsweet and see if that does anything.  I'll let you know.  :)
That's about it from here for now.  
I know--for me this is a quick post--mostly pictures--ROFL!
Have a wonderful rest of the week!!  :) :)
"Laughter is carbonated holiness."
Anne Lamott

Monday, October 16, 2017


Good afternoon!  
Big old tumbleweed was sitting across in the parking lot this morning.  I've seen a few of these wandering about since I moved here.  It's gone now.  Wonder where the tumbleweeds go?  
I hadn't seen any since I was a kid until I moved here.  Well, thirteen striped ground squirrels, either.  Bit of the prairie.  :)
There's been a wild bird party going on here ever since I put out the feeder.
They went through one and a half fillings in a week!  Nothing like last year.   
Makes me wonder if they know something we don't.  The ground squirrels have taken to burrows--have been rarely seen for weeks.  The birds are frantically fattening up--and bathing like crazy?  We've already had temps below freezing at night.  Hope that doesn't mean we are in for a long cold winter.  ??
I tried to catch snoozing Annie on the footrest.  Hard to get good pics of black cats, I guess, but doesn't she look relaxed?  She snores as well as farts--LOL!
Today I swept off all the shell remnants but didn't refill the feeder...yet.  Just put out the usual cup of seed on the cement and gave them fresh water.  It looks much quieter and cleaner than this today--hehe!
They still come flying in, of course.  Supposed to be in the 60s this week so the patio door will be open and Annie will be glued to the screen.
I finally worked on the headers in my bullet for November...


...and January. 

My hands and my eyes don't always work like they used to, but it doesn't look bad from farther away--LOL!
I printed off the back worksheet pages in the new Brush Lettering book (108-222).  Too bad her book is not the size of a sheet of paper. 
So, I decided to trim down all the sheets. 
They ended up an odd size--about 7 by 9 1/4 inches.
I had printed them on regular computer paper (which isn't very good for calligraphy--feathers and bleeds)... I printed another set onto laser paper. 
It's sturdier (32 lb.) and a little plastic-y. 
Anyways, then I wanted to try the tracing paper method I had seen online.  With some digging I unearthed some old vellum tracing paper ... 
...and Parchment tracing paper (we're talking decades here, folks).
With some washi tape, you tape down the tracing paper or parchment paper over the drill page so it doesn't move around and then you can supposedly use the drill sheets endlessly. 
So, I tried the vellum tracing paper.
(I have improved with practice, BTW--whoohoo!) 
Perfect!  Didn't bleed through at all! 
Then I tried the thinner parchment paper. 
Also a win! 
On the right here you can see how much thinner that parchment paper is there on the bottom. 
I've seen people use marker paper, too.  I guess anything that is that plastic-y type paper that you can still see through would work.  So now I can use the same drill sheets over and over again!  Just will eventually need some more tracing paper of some kind.  Nice!
BUT--I haven't tried it on the large brush pen or the dip pen yet.  That will be next, of course.  I kind of ran out of steam--LOL!
McFamily came for a visit on Saturday.  Leah was working on a project in the garage (cutting holes in something) for ValleyCon this coming weekend.  (You may recall I have their Stargate suite furniture and decorations stored in my garage.)  
Dagan and I had Ian and Liam inside.  Liam slept the entire time in the car seat--LOL!  (He makes a lot of sounds while he sleeps like Ian did.)  I had been checking out my latest enrollment--Curiosity Stream for $2.99 a month--before they arrived.  So we watched a nature program with David Attenborough called Light On Earth about all the various plants, insects, fish, and other critters that can glow in the dark.  Just love these kind of programs!!  Been quite a while since I had Ian in my lap watching a nature show.  :)
They had brought with frozen vegetarian pizzas for lunch--whoohoo!  Leah didn't finish her hole cutting project so she will be back some time this week.  Supposed to be perfect weather, too--60s in the daytime and chilly at night--ahhh!!
Well, that's what's been happening in my corner of the world.  Been grateful for my pleasant, peaceful days with Annie.  Oh, and Dagan picked me up three 40# bags of wild bird seed on sale at Fleet Farm that are tucked out in the garage.  Am hoping that might last me all or at least most of the winter.  The way the birds act like they are starving, though, who knows?  Even the girls are here sometimes 3-4 times a day.  Maybe with the warmer weather this week they will slow down a bit--LOL!  I am glad to help them out.  :)
 Please, everyone have a safe week.  
Hugs!!  :) :)   
"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle."
Ian MacLaren

Tuesday, October 10, 2017


The Girls showed up in the afternoon before I had replenished the seed supply.  We've had freeze warnings the past two nights and the cold weather seems to have them wound up.  
I put out some food and they did return so I could finally show you how they rapid fire peck that seed--LOL!  I don't think you can hear the clucking very well, but here's the sweet girls.
The grouse and the injured geese are the only birds that Annie hasn't lunged at to scare for fun.
I think the grouse are just a bit too large for Annie to want to mess with.
She is fascinated but she sits quietly.
As you can see, the bird feeder is now out on a table again for the winter.
Dagan came over last Friday evening.  He moved the brown patio chairs and a couple of fans to the garage for me; brought in a humidifier & small table I use to park it on for the winter; and filled the bird feeder and brought that in from the garage, too.  Even went on a cat toy hunt--LOL!  
Leah got ahold of me yesterday while she was at Costco because she noticed that my favorite shampoo and conditioner were on sale (Pantene) in Costco's gigantic bottles--LOL!  I am so spoiled!
I have been thinking a lot about how blessed I am.  My life had been an endless roller coaster ride of traumas, hurdles, crises, life altering events, continual change (moved over 30 times in 31 years until I moved up here), near death experiences, had a baby girl I gave up for adoption, homeless for a summer, trials & tribulations, rapes, raising a boy alone who wasn't supposed to live (12 years of constant sickness and stethoscopes till he had the fontan procedure and a pacemaker), bad to scary relationships, two failed marriages (one involved him threatening me with a gun), injuries, illnesses...but I always had faith that things would get better.  I always knew I could survive, learn a new job, do anything I had to do......until I couldn't.
When my health went down the tubes, couldn't support myself anymore, could barely function from day to day, living in constant pain, was physically forced to quit college (2004), was going to lose my apartment, and had no money TO move...well, I thought my life was basically over.  I didn't have the strength to just keep pushing through like I always had and physically absolutely could not do that anymore.  My body had become the boss of me.  How could anybody hurt this much and not be dying.  I'd wake to wet cheeks because I had been crying in my sleep.
In the eleventh hour I finally got approved for disability (3rd time), got enough back pay to afford to move, and found a low-income apartment in Fargo.  (West Winds where Karma and I lived for close to 11 years up on third floor.)  And who would have thought that these would end up being the very best years of my life?!  (Ignoring physically, of course.) 
Life did get better.  
This feels like my reward for surviving all the rest.  :)  
I relish my quiet, peaceful, boring days.  Dagan has done so amazingly well--has a good job--fell in love with a wonderful woman I adore.  Leah is a gift on so many levels...and they have two little boys in their family now!  They even helped me to move here where I can watch the girls and the ground squirrels.
Happy tears.  
Overwhelmed with gratitude.  
I don't feel alone anymore.
There's nothing more precious in this life than that.
I love my life!!
Wouldn't have changed a thing.  :)
Oh, goodness!  
I need to take a break...
Okay--glad no one can see my blubbering and blowing my nose--LOL! 
Anyways, I need to do more work on headers in my bullet journal.  When I set it up I did a little experimenting with a new font...
..but then got lazy and just stuck to faux-calligraphy.
Until this month.  :)

I found this font online.
I plan to use the two font instructions I got from Lindsey's TPK (The Postman's Knock) for November and December.  I have been in low gear and more pain than usual for a couple of months...but when I do feel up to doing anything extra I have so many things lined up.  :)  And when I am having noodle days with few spoons...I have endless things to watch!  Good thing I was a TV Baby from the 50s and have always been a movie lover, too.  I can escape into Netflix, Amazon Prime, Acorn TV...endless programs to pick from that can make me forget about my body for a while.  And I can chat with you because of the internet!  What a world.  Couldn't have picked a better time to be housebound, eh?  :)
 And Annie McGregor is becoming a true feline companion...little by little.
When she thinks I am too busy typing at the table to notice her she sneaks up on the end table by the patio window.
I still miss Karma.  But I am falling in love with Miss Annie.  OMG!!  Despite her having the smelliest cat poop of any cat I've ever lived with!  No wonder she wanted to go sit by the open patio door--LOL!
Life is a treasure.  :) :)
"One way to open your eyes is to ask yourself, 'What if I had never seen this before?  What if I would never see it again?'"
Rachel Carson