For the New Year 2024

Here it is the fifth day of January and the New Year has really started out pretty well. We spent New Years Eve in Detroit and attended a Red Wings game. They played the Bruins and unfortunately lost but it was still fun with a packed house. I am showing my favorite player, Mo Seider # 53. He is a young defenseman (age 22) and is just a steady guy doing his job. He is a favorite, there are many of his jerseys being worn at every game we go to. The weather cooperated, not too cold, we stayed the night and got back on New Years Day around one to just take it easy.

One of new calendars, my husband, Tom knows I love lighthouses and picked it up. I was thrilled to see the Manistee light because two years ago we took a sunset cruise that took off from Manistee.

Here is my picture of the Manistee light as we were getting ready to go out on Lake Michigan. I laugh every time I think of when I made a post on Facebook about this picture. I made reference to the cat walk and was put into Facebook jail because I was writing about something inappropriate.

Another calendar, a mini Susan Branch that I keep right in site of my computer. I do love her watercolor painting and notes and quotes. Out today is a new blog post on her site, it’s always interesting.
I always use her two year pocket calendar that is just as cute as her larger calendars. The cover papers are very sturdy and that is handy because I take it in and out of my purse a lot. I love the primroses on the front.
A friend and I exchange calendars each year and usually it is a Charley Harper Calendar. This year I asked for this Terrry Runyan calendar. I just love her cats, this one will be going down into a room that I am turning into guest room and extension of my studio.
Most of the pictures here today are taken on my new little digital camera. In the near future we are flying to Arizona and I wanted a small camera that is not my phone. Or a small one to take to the beach that is easier to handle than my Nikon while sitting in a beach chair.
I am still learning where everything is and these Starbucks cups could have used a flash. I don’t know what I am going to do with them but maybe some of the designs may be some inspiration.
We have been looking for travel items and have found a few at Meijer. We are not checking a bag but doing a carry on and another bag to put under the seat. I had been looking all over for some root pump and found some made by Big Sexy Hair. It’s pretty cute if I do say so. I have found little Secret deodorant and the little bottle for my shampoo and a travel blow dryer at half price with some extra CVS points. They almost gave it to me!

This weekend we will be seeing a Lions game. They have been very exciting and we started going to the games when they were 0 AND 16. We have gone through 4 coaches, the owner William Clay Ford passed away, then Martha Ford, his wife took the helm and now Sheila Ford, the daughter is the chairwoman. Dan Campbell, the coach has been there for three years but played for the Lions in 2006. He is from Texas.

There are many exciting things coming up in the next months. This is my first painting for the year. I am just sketching in with watercolor crayons and pencils. This is so the mark dissolves when I use the paint. This is a special piece which I will talk about when it is completed.

These are the books I am reading right now on my kindle app. I saw them on facebook and bought them. The first five or 6 were a total of $6.99 and I couldn’t find them in the library, so I went for it. These books are entertaining with a retired policeman who lost his wife a year before. He didn’t know how to cook and decided to take a trip to different small cities and learn how to make different dishes. He is accompanied by a dog who was kicked out of the police academy for disobedience. It is fun to read what the dog is thinking and of course the retired policeman falls into cases. It is Albert Smiths Culinary Capers and I purchased on, of course, Amazon.
Our tree and lights are still up. I love to look in there and see them. I am really enjoying them now since I don’t have to do anything, just enjoy. We probably will take them down next week. There is a little snow coming so I will take down the outdoor lights but we don’t turn them on anymore. I have been getting the applications in for upcoming art shows. There are many new painting ideas swirling in my mind. I would like to paint a couple of pieces of furniture and get pictures hung. I am planning on working on needlework and hopefully a little quilting. Plans for the redo of the guest area, and short term would like to clean out my bird feeders and put new food in and plant some succulents to replace others that didn’t make it.

This little guy comes onto our porch to eat the cat food. I believe he may make it into a painting.

I hope your New Year is going fine and until next time.

2023 Here We Come

So I am going to start my post out with our Christmas Tree. I took this picture this morning when it was dark. I know I have shown it before but since I am going to talk about Christmas first I thought it was perfect to start with the tree. We couldn’t take the pictures on Christmas Day by the tree because amazingly we had sun and it was too bright. We have very few sunny days in December in Indiana. My goodness, it was so cold and icy and the wind was horrendous for three days! It will be memorable but we only had an inch of snow, unlike other places…like Buffalo, New York that ended up with almost four feet of snow. They have that lake effect that pounds them, earlier they had some pretty good snow too, maybe around Thanksgiving? We saw the mayor say “We are a pretty hardy bunch in Buffalo, but this one was bad”. To have it declared a blizzard the wind had so sustain 35 mph or more for at least three hours. We were told that Fort Wayne hit that mark at 3:30 pm on Saturday the 24th. Our son had to work that evening and he was staying at our house because it isn’t as far to drive. It usually takes him 30 minutes to get there. He decided to leave around 3:15 pm and he had waited to see if they would call off work, and he had called them to tell about white out conditions but the travel conditions for the county were not the worst they could be so he was told he had to come in. We downloaded an app to watch him get to work, he got there a little after 4 pm, then he called us and they called off work as he was pulling into the drive. So he drove back to our house in what we now know were the blizzard condition winds. He made it and was a hardy one too. The weather service originally forecasted 3 to 6 inches of snow for us, so thankful we didn’t get that.

Here is the four of us on Christmas Day. I was setting the timer and getting in the picture. I wasn’t sure if I needed to lean in to make it into the picture. I don’t walk fast and I had Kevin saying “don’t trip and fall” be careful. But I like the picture, we haven’t gotten one of the four of us this year.
Since the weather was so bad my niece and her family didn’t want to chance it so this Sunday on New Years Day we will celebrate with them. The weather is supposed to be in the 40’s with some rain, much better conditions.
Something I discovered this year that I am sure you will want to try. They were passing these out at Costco. I thought they would probably be drab and dry but no way! The seasoning is fabulous, and I cannot get enough of them! I eat them for a morning snack, they are perfectly crunchy and tasty! Don’t be skeptical you will not be disappointed.

More than likely, you have seen me talk about my surgeries this year and a half. My last one was August 24th and it was a back fusion. I did physical therapy for nine weeks and in that time I had a check up with our family doctor. He did not like the way my walk was progressing. He thought that going to a therapist that had a pool would be beneficial. They were thinking of people with spinal surgeries when this pool was put in. There is no pain when exercising but you know if you worked hard because there is soreness your next day which is to be expected. I haven’t used it yet but there is even a treadmill in it. The depth goes to 4.5 feet and is 90 degrees.

Halloween had decent weather this year and I sat outside and took pictures. This little guy was Hulk Hogan. How cute he is and love the mustache.
I loved the Lego guy and how about the adult bringing up the rear who was a domino, too funny. I enjoy seeing what people come up with.
How about the Ghostbuster guy and the Stay Puff the marshmallow man. I did take more but those were highlights. The kids love to have their pictures taken.
I have been printing each day, the 4 X 6 images of my paintings to turn into cards. That pile is two inches high so far and if I don’t print each day the printer needs to have the print heads cleaned. That makes my black ink go down so fast. I am trying to keep my printer going for the year because I think a new one may be in the works. I am preparing for the art season this year, I should be good enough to do shows with help from my husband. It takes a while to put cards together and I am planning on carving new stamps too.
These next pictures are some that I did this year. These were commissioned by a woman that she loved her little dog who passed on. Chelsie was 17 and had been her brother’s dog and she took her when he passed away. I did two 6 x6 canvases, the top one is titled “Among the Flowers” and the bottom is “Chelsie in the Kitchen”.
The top heart pictures were commissioned by a special customer. She was giving these to friends whom she gets together with and plays a game. Two of the friends were gardeners, one lives on Moose Lake and one enjoys the wide open spaces of the midwest.
The top painting is one I did for a friend who lives in Florida. His name is Rocky and is their special dog who went to visit elderly people and did such a wonderful job, they looked so forward to seeing him.

The bottom one was our neighbor who was a boxer named Maggy. She got cancer this year and is sorely missed. The kids came over to have me create a mixed media painting to give to their Mom for Christmas.

This is my most recent painting titled “Surround Yourself with Friends”. It was our 2022 Christmas card and many of you received it.
This is the last I will share for this post, it is titled “Here’s my Happy” I love all the different flowers and it truly makes me happy. I have been applying to art fairs and am looking forward to 2023. I will be updating my online shop and will announce when it is done, but if you see something that catches your eye, please write me. Have a safe and happy New Year

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Thoughts about “You never know”

Here it is, December 27th. I had a great Christmas celebrating with my family. Always we work so hard getting everything completed for the big day and then it is over so fast. We had such fun playing Heads Up for at least two hours straight. It was great to have the kids and adults play. So now we have the quiet time.

One of my favorite things to do during this time of the year is sitting in a dark room with just the Christmas lights on sipping my morning coffee.

This is one of my favorite ornaments, The Capitol Building. I found this in Fort Wayne somewhere but the four of us did have a trip to D.C. and were able to go into this fabulous building. It is shown on television quite a bit these days and the news reporters are in Statuary Hall and brings back good memories of our fun time there. In one week we walked 41 miles.

We did pick this ornament up in D.C. as Tom and Sam were able to take a tour of the White House. I picked this up in the official gift shop of the White House along with some of the White House Easter Eggs.
I recall picking this ornament up in Gettysburg. It is the pattern of the Lincoln White House China. I wonder how many pieces are still around of it.
The first ornament that Tom and I bought together 39 years ago.

We used to put up the tree above and I had to wait for the guys to be home to bring it down and put it together. Then I couldn’t ever get the Angel to stay straight on top because we had to get the ladder out and didn’t want to do that. Also the cats would climb the big tree which made every thing wobble and jingle. Sounded like angels were getting their wings often. So I went to Big Lots last year and purchased this tall pencil tree. It has three pieces, I can get it down from the attic myself and the cats don’t climb it because the branches are all too close together. After 39 years of marriage we have acquired many beautiful ornaments. So I just grab a box and it is a surprise what it inside of it. Each year will be different. It is a treat and I can get the decorating done.

This tree topping angel I purchased in Chicago at Marshall Fields. She is a very favorite of mine. She is holding up very well for 39 years old. How old do they consider antiques?

Speaking of Antique, this year I started going to a rheumatologist and she determined that I had inflammatory arthritis. I take one small pill daily and have just felt great and even lost 23 pounds! Win, Win!

On December 2nd while moving the wash to the dryer I had a pulling pain that let go and was painful for days. I believe I had a housework related injury! A week later I had been carefully walking and boom something in my knee stuck and I went down face first. Then on my 60th birthday it got worse and I almost fell in the restaurant parking lot and building. Thank goodness my family was with me to help me out. For the car beside us, if your mirror was all wonky when you came out, I’m sorry. I got into the Ortho Doctor and he pulled out fluid and put in cortisone and sent me to the Physical Therapist for six weeks. Ostio Arthritis gone mad. So that is why I say….You never know what is ahead of you. One day you are feeling great, the next day you are falling down. Either way, this will get fixed. One session of PT helped me stand up straighter and walk better. I am not fast and I have an even higher respect for people who live with a permanent disability. Be Patient and Be Kind.