Thursday, April 28, 2011

Play - P52 Prompt

This pic is a few weeks old, but it fit right into the prompt for my Project 52......PLAY.
My nieces spent 3 days with me and we had lots of fun as you can see.
Now, if this prompt were for this next week I would have a whole different picture of PLAY as I leave tomorrow on the 9th Senior Trip to Orlando, Florida!
So now I'm off to pack and get a good night's sleep before I go through a weekend with 44 high school seniors that is sure to wipe us all out!
I'll be back soon, might even be able to post some of our events throughout this weekend if I get a few minutes.
Ta!

Monday, April 25, 2011

This & That.........

 This is Mr. Reynolds.
 He's our high school principal.  He is a graduate of CMU (Central Michigan University).  He is NOT a fan of WMU (Western Michigan University).  He's a great sport and is always ready to step up to the plate when our student body challenges him.  About 4 or so years ago we had a student with cystic fibrosis.  He was in need of a lung transplant and our student body stepped up to raise money to help with his medical expenses.  The student council went to him and he told them if they raised $1,000 by a certain date, he would shave his head completely bald & shave off his beard.  They did and then so did he!
So this latest challenge was to raise $150 in one class period and he would not only wear WMU attire, but he would also let one lucky student throw a pie in his face.  
Well, they did ...... and then he did....
Also, in case you were wondering, I am leaving this Friday with my 9th Senior Class for Florida.  It's our annual Senior Trip to Orlando for Grad Nite at Walt Disney World.
I don't know who's more excited.....me or the kids!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Open

 Open - the prompt for this week's 52 Photos.  I thought about it some last week when I first saw it, but then things went a little haywire once the weekend came.  I honestly didn't think too much more about it until last night.  Again, nothing came to mind.....until this morning in the shower.  I think some of my best thoughts & ideas come in my early morning shower.  It's my prayer closet, my sing at the top of my lungs when I know no one is home stage, my relaxation station......
Let me share a little with you about my week.  On Saturday Dream Boy & I went into town, we had to drop off some tax papers to my uncle who does our taxes.  Since we were on that side of town, I suggested that Dream Boy drop me off at Hospice to visit a long time family friend who was recently admitted.  I spent about 1/2 hour - 45 minutes with him and his daughter.  We talked about this & that, politics mostly as that is Roger's favorite subject.  But we also touched on the "elephant in the room."  When I got ready to leave Roger said, "I love you."  I told him I know that and then I told him I would be praying for him.  The door was opened for me to say that.  Roger believes totally in God, but not sure of his salvation.  We've had many talks on this subject and as long as Roger has left on this earth, I will continue to witness to him.
When Dream Boy & I left we headed over to his mom's as she had just called and dad had been put in the hospital for pneumonia.  Dad suffers from COPD and emphysema.  We checked up on mom & then left for the hospital to visit dad.  He was doing great, it was just more for observation that they were keeping him overnite due to his breathing issues that initially brought him in.  As the weekend progressed and we entered into Monday night dad seemed to be losing ground.  His breathing became extremely labored by early Monday evening and blood gases revealed some not so good things.  Within a short manner of time, he was moved into ICU and was being treated for his COPD and for Congestive Heart Failure.  At one point when Dream Boy, mom & I were out in the waiting area, mom came to us, got down on her knees and the 3 of us prayed together.  The door, again, was opened for us to praise God and come to Him in our time of need.
Then came Tuesday.  I received an email from a young woman whom I greatly admire.  She is a year older than my youngest son and grew up in the church we raised our boys' in.  Sophie at one time went to Zambia on a summer mission trip after her 1st year in college.  She soon grew to love the place & the work she was doing and God opened many doors for her to become a pretty much full time missionary over there.  Sophie has always amazed me with her faith and love of God.  Even though I didn't know her well growing up, I was drawn to her.  When she went back to Zambia the 2nd time, she began a blog that I followed, and still do.  Sophie contacted me personally on Tuesday to ask if I would prayerfully consider financial support for her & her works.  She explained that she would be coming home this summer for a few months, but then be returning in August to continue her work with GEMS - through the Christian Reformed Church and also to adopt a 1 1/2 year old daughter.  I felt such a strong pull at that moment from God that I immediately emailed her back.  The door was again opened.  I told Sophie that I would pray through support for her, but that I would also love to mentor her through this adoption process being an adoptive mom myself.  WOW!  Through the past 3 days I have been even more greatly blessed and touched by this young woman.  She in turn, has said that she never expected this door to be opened to her, the support I would be able to give through her adoption process.  She just knew that God had laid my name on her heart and she followed him.  
So this morning while in my shower I was pondering the word, "open".  It came to me just then......this is my picture this week.
 
It's so simple really - just ask, just know and He will open the door to anyone who receives Him, excepts Him as their Lord.
He opened the door for healing on my father-in-law who is doing much better today.  He opened the door for me to witness and love my family friend and He opened the door for the blessing and opportunity to mentor a wonderful young woman at a very important time in her life.
He has opened the door for any of you who just know and then receive His invitation to enter. 

Monday, April 18, 2011

Seriously NOT Funny!

It's April 18.....NOT April 1st.  Therefore, it's not April Fool's, but the weather decided it was.  This is what I woke up to this morning....
Seriously?  I mean it's APRIL 18th!!!!  I see absolutely no humor is this little joke and as I look out the window it is still snowing..............
Come on - it was 85 degrees a week ago and now???  Ugh.....
Now I love the season's in Michigan, but winter in the middle of April is pushing the limits.  I get upset too when it's 60 in December & there's no chance of a white Christmas.
I am, along with everyone else in Michigan, is SO over winter......please let this be the last snow fall until well into next November/December.
Please?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Me

This week's photo prompt - "me".
Tough subject - do I do a self portrait, do I take a shot of something that I enjoy?  What do I do?
Dream Boy got home from work today a little early.  It was 61 degrees out and we decided to go for a bike ride together.  Dream Boy remembered last year on one of his treks going through the local State Park about this same time and seeing this patch of beautiful spring flowers popping up.  It looked like a blue carpet.  So we headed off in that direction as we had seen them sprouting up on the hillside across the street.  Sure enough, when we got out there they had started to bloom.  I think they're still in the early stage, as Dream Boy thought it was a lot fuller last year.
We had taken my camera and when I made mention of this week's prompt, he offered to take my picture in the field of blue.  So technically, Dream Boy took the shot this week, not me.  But it still counts.
I count him as a big part of me - of who I am today.  He makes me happy, he loves me unconditionally, he cares for me to no end and he's always there for me.  We've been married for 30 1/2 years and I love this man of mine more than ever.
God has blessed ME so richly with this life I live.  I have a family that embraces who I am and loves me anyways.  :)
I don't think I tell all of them how much I love each of them enough.  But please, know that I do.  My life wouldn't be the same without each of you helping me walk this crazy path and loving me no matter what.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Postcard #2


Today is Monday.  Today was cold compared to yesterday.  We hit 85 degrees here yesterday - a record breaker.  I didn't complain though, as i knew the temps would return today to the "normal" range of mid 50s.
Today was also back to school after a week off for spring break.  The kids' are counting the days down now until the end of school.  I'm counting the days until I leave on the next senior trip - two weeks from this Friday if you really want to know!
I got home from school today and literally skipped out to the mailbox hoping to receive another mystery postcard......and I did!!!
It's so pretty and sparkly - and it's from Janice A. in Bloomington, Minnesota.  She said she had fun making it and Janice - I SO enjoyed receiving it.
I'm a goof in that I still love to get snail mail and this made me very happy today!
Thanks Janice - thank you for a bright spot in my day!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Sunday

 This past Friday marked 3 years since my dad died.  I still miss him so, along with my mom.
But I am so thankful to have been their daughter.  They taught me so much in life and their spirits continue to live on through me and my sisters each and every day.
Loving you, remembering you and always thinking of you dad.




Yesterday started out kind of cool and cloudy.  Dream Boy and I went together to Lowe's to pick up some new vents for our "family room".  It's actually our oldest son's bedroom that we've converted to a guest room.  I prefer the term "family" room, because anyone who stays with us is considered family.
The room was already painted, except the trim was a darker shade of the walls.  So the past week Dream Boy & I finished up painting the trim white and I spent Friday painting the beds.  The bedding isn't exactly the color I'm looking for, but when they are given to you, you learn to not look a gift horse in the mouth.  I'll be looking for some duvet covers soon.  I also need to find fabric to make curtains - I want something white with just a hint of gray.  I have an idea in my head, but it's so hard to find fabric then.  Hate when I do that to myself!  But for now - it's a family room just waiting the arrival of family in June.
A little over a week ago, I was reading my blogs one morning as I do every morning I don't have to get up & rush off to school.  One of my favorites to follow is Smash Stories.  It's a blog that is full of ideas about how to use the soon to be released Smash Books.  These were featured at the recent CHA show in California this past January.  If you love to journal - you will LOVE Smash Books.  They were scheduled to be released by April, but due to circumstances beyond their control - they are being delayed a bit.  So they were offering to the 1st 400 emailers this little sampler smash book.  So I immediately emailed my info, but wasn't too sure if I had entered in time.....until yesterday when my little package arrived in the mail.  The packaging alone was so cute!  But this little treasure is small enough to keep in my purse, glove box, camera bag - whatever - to post my little treasures in.  I did a little happy dance while crossing the street from the mailbox and literally had the package open before getting to my door.  I know, silly, but it's the little things, eh?
After touching and opening and reading and touching and browsing through my Smash Book, I headed down to my creative corner to make a bracelet that I saw a tutorial on.....Make A Bracelet.  She has all sorts of tutorials on her blog.  This is one long bracelet that closes with a button - you wrap it around your wrist twice before securing it on!
Yesterday was a good day - hopefully today will be even better.  I have a bit of a tummy bug that I'm hoping will go away as it is supposed to reach 80+ degrees here today.  It's going to be a bit windy, and yes, that's VERY warm for Michigan this time of year, but it's been a long, cold winter and a very wet spring break week.  I'm not going to complain, I'm just going to enjoy it!
Happy Sunday everyone.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Postcard Swap

Last month I joined a "postcard swap" last month on i hanna's blog.  The challenge was to create 10 postcards....yes - make your OWN cards and then mail them out to the recipients according to the list sent to you by i hanna.
Last week I posted the 1st & only card I've received, to date.  We all have until tomorrow to mail them out.  I, for one, am mailing mine all out in the morning.  I finished mine up yesterday and photographed them today, then filled them all out with short little greetings.
Here are my 10 cards and where they are going:
 De Kalb, Illinois
 Toronto, Ontario, Canada
 Serbia
 Oklahoma City, OK
 The Netherlands
 Israel
 Granite Springs, NY
 Jacksonville, Florida
 Newark, Ohio
Tucson, Arizona
When I started making these, Dream Boy asked what I was doing.  I told him.  He asked me where this is going to take me?  Funny guy - you see about 5ish years ago I joined up with a group of women through Two Peas In A Bucket on a Circle Journal.  We became good friends - from all over the United States.  In 2008 we all met in California for a long weekend of creativity.  Most of us had never met, some lived only miles apart and still had never met, but we all came together for a wonderful weekend in Monterey to create, laugh, cry and share.
So.....where will this postcard swap take me?  Maybe no further than the stamp on the postcard......but it's an adventure nonetheless.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Stripes - Week 14

We are completing week 14 of our Project 52 photos with the prompt:
"Stripes"
Fourteen weeks - WOW!  I can't believe I've stuck with it, but I have.  Several times I've started the 365 Project, where you take one photo each day of the year.  I've failed - miserably.  I don't think I've made it past the 1st 3 weeks ..... EVER!
But this I've stayed on task.  I like having a week to work on the shot, to come up with ideas.  I like having a weekly prompt, rather than just taking a picture to take a picture.  It helps tremendously to have that prompt! 
I also invested, if you can call $5.99 an investment, in a little album this past week to put each week's shot in and record the prompt next to it.
 This is a terrible shot of my book, but the day here has been cold, rainy, dark and dreary - so I didn't have any "real" natural light around here.  Heaven forbid I use my flash!  
So I spent the past week thinking of stripes - I was amazed the places I found them, other than the obvious.  When the prompt was given to us last week Lisa gave an example in a mosaic form, so I've "lifted" her idea and did the same to express all the forms of stripes I've seen in the past week.
Many of these stripes made me very happy this last week.  Can you guess which one's?

Camp Aunt Patti


We've been thoroughly enjoying our week together.  The weather is typical Michigan - cold, rainy, dreary.  Yesterday was sunny all day, but very cold & windy.  Today we are still sitting here in our jammies, watching movies at 10:30 in the morning.  Nothing wrong with that!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Happy 21st Birthday

Our youngest turned 21 this past Saturday.  He went out at midnight on April 2 with his college buddies - up at school.  Then the plan was for them to come here on Saturday night for pizza & cake.  
I spent most of Saturday grocery shopping, baking a birthday cake and chopping veggie's for pizza's.  
Dream Boy helped grill the crusts for the pizza's before everyone got here.  Big brother & his girlfriend arrived, along with grandma & grandpa.  Then the birthday boy showed up with his buddies.........they went straight to the back yard where Dream Boy was grilling.
When he came into the house, this is what I saw...
Ummm....what is THAT?  Someone was apparently dancing the night before and  a table jumped out in front of him, slicing his cheek open.  Ouch!  Now that's gonna leave a mark.
We ate lots of pizza and then we had this....
A triple decker Boston Cream Pie.  This cake is a lot of work, but oh so worth it!
Then there was some of this....
 Birthday boy is moving into a house on campus in May.  He wanted a small grill - charcoal - so his wish was granted.  His buddies are happy too.  The 2 on the couch closest to him are going to be 2 of his room mates.
We are on spring break this week for school and my nieces have once again joined me for a few days of fun at "Camp Aunt Patti".
Yesterday we spent the day doing some of this....
(C)amp (A)unt (P)atti
2011
We went and bought t-shirts and worked on them all day so that we could wear them today.
Today we are playing with nail polish and moustache's.......more tomorrow.