Return to Routine and a Wonderful Transition

After all the wonderful visits it was back to the usual routine.  It has been so absolutely wonderful to visit and I will have memories to treasures until the next visits.  The next visit will be Ireland!  I will be leaving in July for a few weeks!! I did receive a lovely package from Ireland last week.  It was full of wonderful goodies and I have been savoring them bit by bit!  Is there anything more lovely than receiving a care package from a loved one?  I just love all the items my daughter chose to send! I am using the soap and it is delightful!  That Barry tea….OMG there is no need for coffee as it is truly the bomb!!

But I must share a most transformative experience!  Since beginning the mind body medicine Phd program I have been fascinated by all the alternative medicines and their ability to support the whole person: mind, body, spirit. Working towards balancing my own wellness wheel has lead me to a deep sense of self.  I had been interested in Reiki for some time and a month back visited a Reiki Circle which was an amazing experience.  Well last week end I took the Reiki I and II training.  I was lead to Holy Fire Reiki and my guide/instructor is such an amazing amazing person.  The experience was so deeply spiritual and through it I had a deep reconnection with my own faith tradition and spirituality.  Holy Fire Reiki has literally transformed my life.  I came away from that week-end with a clarity and deep understanding of my purpose and the gifts God has so graciously bestowed upon me.  I have felt that I am in a transition period and that I am being prepared for a change in what I am currently doing.  I now believe this more than ever and am just allowing myself to be lead to where I belong at this time and this place in my life.  I am much calmer and able to be open to embrace whatever life has to throw my way.  Reiki is a way of life and I now practice daily to gain wisdom, peace, understanding, and to send out and receive God’s perfect love.  I am ever so deeply grateful that I was lead to this practice and the gifts I receive daily though the practice!  Being a hyper-sensitive person and an empath, it is so easy to take on the emotions of others and allow those to impact our own health.  Reiki has given me a way to channel the gift of an empathic soul to heal self and others.  I struggle to put this experience into words so will just leave it at that…  You can learn more about Holy Fire Reiki here: https://www.reiki.org

I have been out and found a few treasures here and there.  In needing to up my wardrobe I have been doing some thrift shop trips and while I have found some amazing wardrobe pieces I have also found a few other goodies as well.  This is from my most recent trip.

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I like to decorate my outside fence with faces and have quite a nice collection.  I just love this clay mask and it is just the perfect addition to my collection!

When I was a child this exact picture hung on the wall of our house at the ranch.  Imagine my delight when I found it!  The older I get the more nostalgic I seem to become.  I have always been an empath and a hyper sensitive person, but it just increases as I age. I love surrounding myself with items from my childhood.

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I was delighted to have my best friend Mia arrive for an overnight stay.  Although it was a quick visit it was absolutely wonderful!  Since it was a Friday we headed out for a few estate sales.  Just the previous day I had purchased a bevy of Hummels from a lady who was going to have a yard sale so that was out first stop.  These are the darling pieces I managed to score.

This little guy has a pig in his back pack and is just the cutest thing ever!

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Mia found some treasures as well. I also got found this St Francis.

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Unfortunately Mia had to be on her way and I had to head to work.  But on my way to work I passed by a sale and found these treasures.  I have been wanting a Ginny doll forever!

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A trip to my local nature grocer and I found these gems.  I went in to find the Reiki magazine but found 3 issues of Mantra Wellness.  This is a new to me magazine and just absolutely full of wonderful articles and beautiful painted saying and illustrations.  I will savor each issue!

As I have been being lead deep into the mind, body, spirit connection and the need for balance in all areas of the wellness wheel, I have been using my essential oils more often and in healing ways.  Add the Reiki experience and I was determined as ever to bring these practices deeper into my work place.  Working in the field of long term care there is always drama and loss which creates an imbalanced and often negative chaotic energy.  I often find the need to clear the energy.  Yes it may sound crazy, but I have always been extremely sensitive to energy forces both good and bad.  I now have better tools to direct, divert, avoid negative energy.  I diffuse many blends to cleanse my office and wear oils to protect, cleanse, and release energy.  I recently found this amazing spray and immediately ordered a bottle.  It has crystals inside the bottle as well.

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You can clearly see the web address.  She has many wonderful items in her shop!!  This won’t be my only purchase for sure!  I also added a few special pieces of decor that bring me joy and peace.

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As an HSP my environments are important sources of either peace or chaos.

You know how every once in a while you come across a book that is just so amazing you just can’t seem to get enough of it?  I have found that in Matt Richtel An Elegant Defense. I first listened to the book on audio.  But then just had to have a copy to start reading and highlighting passages.  This is a book about our immune system and fits in so perfectly with my PhD training! It goes quite in-depth about the working of the immune system and how it impacts our health as it is so connected to every other system in our body.  The author uses 4 case studies to highlight the research that has been done and where we are currently in understanding of the immune system.  With the rise in auto immune diseases it is definitely a must read!!  It is absolutely fascinating!!  You can find it here  https://www.amazon.com/Elegant-Defense-Extraordinary-Science-Immune/dp/0062698532

I have done little knitting or sewing of late so nothing to share.  I have been doing mindless socks and dish towels in the evenings while watching my latest go to Brit series.

And now I must away and get some work done.  I had earmarked this three day week end to do some organizing in the garage storage.  Something I put off as it is quite the drudgery!

Peace,

Patricia

Closing Out The Year

This has been a difficult holiday season with losing my Cinny.  I was still mourning my Holly. Yet I know that as long as I give my heart to boxers, that time will always be too short.  Boxers have a shorter life span than many other breeds; nine years is a good lifespan. But I would never ever give up the love that this breed so freely gives.  I will always be a boxer girl.  It has been tough on Bruno and I have been in touch with NW Boxer Rescue to find him a new companion and another sweet love for us.  I love this rescue group! I was sorely tempted when Kim let me know they had some puppies; after several days of waivering I knew that at this time I could not really meet a puppy’s needs.  So I am still waiting for the right fur baby for our home. I leave it in the hands of the rescue group to find the best fit for Bruno, Jimmy, and me.  

Before losing Cinny we kept busy preparing for Christmas. In November I took five days off work.  It was glorious!  I kept so busy and accomplished so much!   Jimmy had a few days off and we concentrated on finishing the last of our shopping. We did a part of our shopping at Portland’s Saturday Market. Every time we head into the city we try to find new places to explore.  It is such an amazing city. 

I also decorated the house, knitted, sewed, and played in the kitchen.

Infinity scarves are really fun, fast, and easy. I have made an additional two since these pictures were taken. With the hubs working swing shifts, my evenings consist of curling up with my sweet boxer babies, turning on my favorite Brit TV shows (a second watching of Foyles War is my current choice), and knitting away. I also pulled out one of those weaving contraptions I found this summer at yard sales. I was hooked, it is totally mindless yet turns out a great looking scarf.  All of these projects are from the bits and bobs of yarn I collected secondhand for pennies. 

You all know how much I love Pinterest. When I saw these chocolate spoons I just had to make some. I wanted a little flavor so used a chocolate orange and combined it with a Hershey bar. I found the spoons at Goodwill and Walmart. 

Got out for near daily walks. Always new places to explore at Minto-Brown Island.

One one of my last days off we headed to the beach. I am so grateful that we did.  Cinny was more active than usual as she ran and played. We never would have expected that within 72 hours a brain tumor would take her from us. Look at that happy face!

I received this in the mail from my sweet daughter after losing my Cinny.

How special is that!!  RIP my sweet Frassy and Munster. 

Here is another sweet gift I received in the mail. Every year for the past 7 or so, a dear friend Louella sends me a home made ornament. I treasure every one.  Louella also includes a goodie for the fur babies to. She has two handsome fur boy’s who like to be included in the giving. 

Aren’t those just too cute!! 

Inadvertently several years ago I started finding a focus word for each year. 2012 was balance as I learned to balance work/health/life. 2013 was adventure as I got married, left one job, moved states and started a new job. 2014 really did not have a word as it has been loss and imbalance again.  In perusing Pinterest I happened upon Susannah Conway susannahconway.com and her wonderful workshops.  I immediately signed up for this one

There is a facebook page where participants can share ideas and work together.  I love it!  

Her next workshop is

I am considering this one as well.  I am pretty confident I have my word and will sharing it after the first of the year.  

Here’s wishing you and yours a wonderful and blessed Christmas and New Year!

Patricia

 

 

ENTER THE RAIN

Rainy season has come to the valley.  I do love the rain.  Living in Walla Walla we never saw a great deal of rain and I have always enjoyed a raining day.  It was one of the reasons I had looked forward to living in the Willamette Valley again.  I love rainy, misty, drippy days!  I love the way the mist hangs over the valley, weaving and dancing up and down and in and out of the trees.  I love the sound of rain beating a pattern on the roof and windows, making me feel all safe and cozy tucked in my warm dry home.  And it makes me want to accomplish things and tackle projects.  Indoor projects of course.  But I don’t mind walking in the rain, bundled up tight, its quite invigorating.  Our latest adventure was in the rain as we headed to check out Pacific City.

It was cold, windy, and raining but so beautiful.  Had the best ever cup of Peppermint tea there and hubby had a Chai which was the best I had ever tasted!!

Wet but happy!!

We took a new route home which followed this beautiful creek.

And crossed numerous one lane bridges.  This was my favorite.  Check out the pumpkins on the end posts!

Back at work I was surprised and delighted to walk into my office and find this gorgeous bouquet!

 Happy Bosses Week!!  What loving and thoughtful staff!!  They are a blessing to me!  And also a fruit tray.  Don’t mind my messy office the past month has been a bit hectic at work!

Speaking of work, test results back and no H. Pylori.  My MD referred me out for a endoscopy, but in the interim I started reading everything I could and discovered the benefits of grapefruit juice for ulcers.  It is amazing, seriously!  I dropped all process foods and started drinking copious amounts of grapefruit juice and over night the pain nearly disappeared. Speaking with the gastrointestinal MD he stated that grapefruit juice will neutralize acid.  So for now I am doing that I will try dropping the omeprozole to one a day.  But not brave enough to do that yet.  Feels good to feel good again!!  We never really appreciate our health until we face health issues.  This was a nice wake up call to get my diet back on track with healthy foods and to work on stress reduction!  I will be experimenting with some of my favorite recipes and substituting whole wheat flour and alternative sweetners such as maple syrup.  Nothing artificial however. 

And now back to this:

What better to do on a rainy, drippy, cold afternoon!


Happy Fall,

Patricia


Welcome Pumpkin Season

October has arrived, and with it my desire for pumpkin goodies.  I rarely bake anymore but just can’t resist pumpkin bread. I tried two recipes and while both are good they are distinctly different. The first is a traditional moist pumpkiny flavored bread.

 Yummy perfection.  When this was gone I happened upon a recipe that added dates and pecans.  It made a much darker bread with clovey flavor.  Next time I would cut back on the cloves, yet as it aged over a few days the clove mellowed out. This was by far my favorite!

Here is the recipe courtesy of my friend Joyce

3 cups sugar
3 1/2 flour
2 tsp. soda
1/2 tsp salt
4 eggs
1 can pumpkin
1 cup oil
1 cup dates or raisins
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tsps. each: Nutmeg, cloves (ground), allspice, cinnamon

Mix all dry ingredients, mix all liquids. Stir together until smooth.

Grease and flour a bundt pan.  Bake for a good hour at 350 checking occasionally to see when done inside. 

In the kitchen I also made up some of the blackberry harvest into jam.  Blackberry jam is one of my favorites. I always use the recipe inside the MCP pectin box. 

So yummy spread on bagel and cream cheese!  

One big change for me has been going caffeine free.  A few months back my stomach began hurting and I could not figure out why. Tried clearing things out of my diet with no success. Doctor visit and seems I have an ulcer. Testing for H.Pylori and if not that will be scoping my stomach.  So I went cold turkey off caffeine. Amazingly no headaches. And I don’t miss it. I now drink herbal tea and my newest hot drink love is 100% Apple juice with a shot of caramel.  Yum!  Stomach still hurting but better and bearable with meds. But I want it cured not bearable!!!  Thankfully my new Doctor (yes I switched after the first just put me on meds with no follow up).  This one is a D.O.  I just have no luck with MDs and have not used one in years since discovering the care that a DO delivers!  And with this the hubs and I decided to start eating clean and eliminating all processed foods. Of course this was after the pumpkin bread.  I’ll have to find a way to make it with whole wheat flour without sacrificing the taste. 

In other news the hubs updated his bike. This one had everything he had been wishing for on it. 

Love this man!  

This crazy boy, who is sitting on his sister (he did not hurt her and I got him right down), left us some nice gifts on the carpet one day while we were working.  Ivory carpet at that!  On to Pinterest to find a solution (I just love Pinterest).  Found one and it was amazing. Even took out some spots that were in the carpet when we moved in! 

Here is the recipe:  Just mix equal parts water and white vinegar in a container and add a generous squirt of Dawn dishing washing liquid.  Saturate the spot and scrub thoroughly working the solution all the way into the pad.  Blot out all the liquid you can with dry towels, let dry, and vacuum.  Spot will be gone!  Amazing!

Crafting and knitting has rather taken a back seat as work has gone crazy and been putting in 10-12 hour days (may be the reason for an ulcer?!).  But I did take time to make another banner for work.

Candy corn!  Simple yet cute. Did not get a finished photo. Just love making these banners.  Again Pinterest is the inspiration!  

Happy Pumpkin Season!

Patricia


More Good Times!

Of all the reasons I love summer my favorite is that is when all the grands come for a visit!  This week it was my oldest Christina, her hubby, and four wonderful precious sweet peas!  I had not seen them in almost a year so was very excited for them to arrive!!  The weather was perfect and I could not wait to share my favorite places with them.

We have the best ever park right nearby so spent a lot of time there.  They just loved climbing on the structures and showing off for their gramps. 

Salem really knows how to make parks that are kid friendly.  Water features are a normal part of these parks. The grands loved them!

On the way back home we always had to stop by the berry bushes.  We took buckets one day to gather enough to share with mom and dad and to make some yummy blackberry milkshakes!

They were some serious berry pickers!  Frankie filled that bucket by himself almost!  Course it never made it home that full as those berries were too sweet to not eat on the way!  

It has always been a practice between the three girls and I to share our crafting stuff and decor. It is handy as one always has something the other needs or can use. So while Christina was here we hit my sewing room with a vengeance and went through every last thing!  I now have closet space and she has stuff she needed for her creative processes.  Of course she warned me she has a carload to trade back.  My girls laugh at me, but they do appreciate that I usually have what they are looking for. The joke in our family has always been “don’t tell mom that you collect something unless you are prepare to have an enormous amount of said items.” I love yard sales and am always on the lookout for special things they would like.  Bless the son in laws as they know to leave room in the car when they come visit as “mom will have boxes of stuff to send home.”  

My grands love my collecting bug and always take home the treasures I’ve collected for them. I love toys and have a hard time passing them up at yard sales!  So I don’t and then I send them home with my grands. Yeah the parents love that too….not!  

Just look at all that junk!  It’s all gone now!  Don’t worry I’ll fill it back up soon!

Of course one day was spent taking the grands to yard sales.  Oh what treasures they found, too!  It was tiring, but they persevered and came home loaded with goodies!  

All my grandchildren inherited the creative gene. Building, sewing, knitting, writing, movie making, sculpting, drawing and painting, and so much more; they all engage in a creative outlet.  I love that!  Turns out that Toot is a knitter!  And wow can she knit!  

She found some faux fur yarn on one of our shopping trips and had this much knitted up right away.  She’s fast!  It appears she inherited her great and great great grandmother’s knitting skill! 

As crazy as it is with a houseful of kids, I just always hate seeing them leave. The house is just too quiet and so lonely. But soon enough the normal routine of business creeps back in and there is always something that needs tending to.  But how my heart aches when they pull away and I walk back into that now silent house!  


My poor little Cinny is getting so old!  She had another hematoma in her ear and needed surgery. She looks so pathetic and acted like the world had ended!  She has another surgery scheduled in a week to remove a growth.  Poor little girl!

Silly crunchy nosed baby!


That big boy we adopted has walked right into our hearts. The hubby is dead in love with him. He has adjusted so well and is no longer requiring crating while we are away.  He loves his little sister and she him. Like my Holly, he is an in your face dog and adores the grands. Bill wanted to take him home.  The hubs would have none of that, he’s nuts over that boy! Although we named him Bruno, I call him Polooka, cause he is a big silly ole Polooka!  

My knitting has remained small simple things. I am in desperate need of dishcloths and so making a half dozen of these:

I go through dish cloths and bleach the heck out of the so just using some yarn I got at a yardsale nothing fancy.  Quick, simple, but the best dish cloths ever!

I did find this on my trip to the Book Bin with Christina and can’t wait to start some projects in it.

Summer includes being invaded by ants.  What pesky little annoyances!  Searched Pinterest and found a remedy that works. Equal parts borax, sugar, and water in a jar lid or small container. Attracts them and they track it back to the nest killing them off. Seems to work OK so far.  

And now must dash off to work….oh how I pine for the days when work in not on my agenda!

Patricia 

 

Family, Fun, and Movie Making

The past two weeks have been super busy. Lots of day trips, family coming to stay, and organizing and having a yard sale.  And also, sadly, my Doodle had to return home to prepare for back to school!  I sure miss the heck out of her!!!  House is way too quiet and poor ole Bruno is lost without her to curl up in bed with every morning. 

Since it was the last few weeks with Doodle we jam packed lots of fun in.  

We spent one day making a movie. I cannot believe her patience with this process.  We were 4 hours in the woods with thunder and lightening all around as she calmly took shot after shot to produce her newest stop motion.

It is amazing how stop motion movies are made. The time and patience that go into the making is amazing. Doodle is currently working on a series and has produced two episodes. You can watch them here 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKI03zYDHJ-V4pGkMpv9ulQ

Of course we had several more trips to the beach.  Usually we never venture further south than Newport, but we wanted to see some new sights and check out Sea Lion Caves.  I had not been there since I was a child and Jimmy and Doodle had never been there.  It was more commercialized than I remember, of course, but very well done with lots to grab your interest and a killer gift shop!  

We discovered an amazing beach on the way home!

Bruno and Cinny just love the beach!  Cinny acts like a puppy once she hits that sand.  The sheer joy that they exhibit spills over onto all of us!!  

We stopped at the cutest little cafe for lunch. They had the most awesome Japanese tea pots all over.  But what made them so sweet was inside each one was a note. What fun to open the pot and discover this note:

I was blessed to be there with two people I love dearly!!  Since Doodle had an upcoming birthday we ordered her a large piece of chocolate cake.

Check out all those umbrellas hanging from the ceiling. The owner makes them. 

At work we had an event to celebrate the dog days of summer. Doodle dressed Bruno up in Harley wear and dressed to match him. She won third place ribbon, losing out to two pocket dogs dressed in dresses.  Bruno would not hold still for a photo. 

It was a great event with dog rescue groups, a local vet, our humane society, and some therapy dogs. The residents loved it and that is what mattered!

All too soon Erica, my sister Anna, my momma, niece, nephew, and grandson showed up to take Doodle home. But they were able to stay a few nights and we squeezed in shopping, yard sales, and a trip to the beach. My momma loves the ocean and was out in that water with her walker!

While Doodle was here at every yard sale she was looking for things for her sibs. She had nice gifts for all of them all wrapped and ready to give. I am so proud of how giving she is!  When her brother, my sweet Jayse, came down with Erica to pick her up she was so excited for him to open his gift.  Jayse loved the building set and his cousin and him got busy building. They were so creative!!!

 A great time was had by all!  We stayed up late, ate too much junk, and talked a storm. When time to head home the car was so loaded there was little room for passengers!  As when those we love leave, the house was too quiet and lonely.  But they will be back soon and next week Chrissy is arriving with more grands!  Cannot wait!!

Living the dream,

Patricia

 

 

 

 



Summertime!!

I have been blessed with a vivid imagination and am always on the lookout for magical mystical places. Imagine my delight when I was out hitting yard sales and discovered this!  A path disappearing into the woods!!  How magical is that!?

The path went down, down, down winding deep into the woods.  I felt like Alice in the rabbit hole.  There were paths branching off here and there and it was difficult to decide which one to follow.  

This is one place I will definitely be returning to often.  It is a great place to walk the dogs and there are so many yet unexplored paths.  I just love how Salem is full of unexpected surprises!  Oh and this is practically in the backyard of the Governor’s Mansion

 

Summer has hit us with a day of 100 degree temps.  That is certainly not my cuppa.  Thankfully it dropped right back into the low 80s.  However it is expected to rise again. I am not a fan of extreme temps either way. When the temp rises what better thing to do than head to the beach and 60 degrees!!

I seriously don’t think I will ever get enough of the ocean!!!  We expected crowds so left the dogs behind.  And then discovered empty beaches…go figure…  We walked miles and then just set staring at the waves while Doodle Bug climbed on the cliffs. What a perfect day!

Since starting to make these simple tea cosys, I am hooked.  It is such a great way to use up my bits and bobs of left over yarn.  I really love the look of hand dyed and variegated yarns in the skein or hank, but not in sweaters or clothing. This is one way I can have my variegated fix. 

Check out this hydrangeas in the background!  Love them and have vases and pots throughout the house as the backyard is full of them. I could never get them to grow in Walla Walla.

Every hearth needs a cricket.  This darling clock I nabbed at a yard sale for peanuts. It is from Austria and has the most beautiful chime on the hour. 

Oh yes the yard sales!  They are marvelous here.  Can’t even begin to list the treasures I’ve found.  I can go out with $20 and return with a carload.  Clothing (entire wardrobes for the grands), dishes (an entire set from Target for $2 just missing 2 bowls which I can replace), yarn, vintage Pyrex, vintage revere wear (I love my revere cook wear but not the newer stuff, the original is heavy and solid), knitting needles, toys and more toys, decor, amazing holiday decor….the list never ends. Of course I’m always grabbing things for the girls and grands….sometimes they think perhaps too much….  I just nabbed this for my eldest.  

The entire set of Franklin Mint James Herriot plates. Look at this detail!!

I love James Herriot and his stories of the trials and tribulations of a country vet.  And know what?!  I snagged this entire set for $10.  Can’t believe it!!  And that awesome tablecloth…yup yard sale for $1.  Gorgeous heavy lace from Europe. 

What did ya’ll do to celebrate Independence Day?  My hubs got stuck at work so Doodle and I did our own fireworks and then lit the fire pit and enjoyed the beautiful evening.

 

And now off to more yard sales.  Wanna join me?!

Patricia

Guess Who?!

Finally back to blogland. Surprising how fast the time can fly. So what have I been up to? Well quite a bit. For one thing I have become a Pinterest enthusiast. But I don’t just pin, I have used this amazing site for decorating ideas for home and work, the recipes to kick us out of food rut, the fitness ideas to kick my bootie, and the organizing ideas to streamline my line. Gotta love it!

I am one of those crazy organized individuals who loves to have systems in place and ways to chart/control aspects of daily living. So when I discovered this system via Pinterest I was hooked. There is just something about writing everything down; menus, budgets, birthdays and gifts, fitness journaling etc, that satisfies something in my soul. Yeah I know but it is what it is…..

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Got the printouts from here: a great blog that is full of amazing ideas for organizing your life! I think I need to put these together for my girls too!

One of the many huge benefits that has come about with the new management of my community is that I now have the ability to have a life outside work. I have been able to sew, craft, knit, gym, cook, and just have me time! I have loved it! I got busy and transformed my sewing room to make is more user friendly. And now it is always a lovely mess of projects in progress! I did clear up long enough to have a great visit from daughter number 2. We did a show at the expo for IDLife. Which I must say is one of the best discoveries I have made in ages! Seriously, hot flashes and joint issues gone with these new vitamins and supplements. They have a great shake…natural and non GMO with Chia that I love and drink daily too. It has saved us a bundle as Jimmy is a huge fan of supplements and these are so reasonable but the best! It is all individually tailored to your needs through a comprehensive health assessment. Do I need to say how much I love this?! Check it out at http://www.IDLife.com/jguzman

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I am not a huge salesperson…well other than selling you assisted living spaces..lol…but this just so rocks!! I have more energy…seriously!!

On one of my excursions out and about I hit the Goodwill. Now first the Goodwill here is nothing like the one in Walla Walla, that place rocks!! Here is it a 4 on the scale of 1-10 and that would be a good day. But look at what I found. This was partially knit but not on needles. I nabbed it for .99 took a look figured out the pattern and was off. Just a few more feet and it is complete. Gorgeous NORO yarn and for .99….SCORE!

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It has been wonderful having time again. Sadly Jimmy and I have different days off, but I have the freedom to tweak my schedule so I make it work for us. We still get our monthly doses of the ocean and nice long walks with the gurlz. With the nice weather we will be heading out on the bike. Jimmy got me a killer leather Harley coat for my birthday and I have been dying to break it in!

Our first spring in Salem has been one filled with beauty, this is our daily view:

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Gotta have some boxers in there!

Happy Spring to ya’ll. Oh and in that organization file is the means to plan and execute a weekly blog. Think I can do it? I’d just love to share all the recipes I’m trying out from Pinterest along with crafty ideas so I’m gonna give it a try!!
Patricia

Sea, Sky, Fields, and Fun…lots of Fun!!

Well February sure turned out to be a month of family time!  Lots and lots of trips to visit and lots of visitors here.  There was barely a moment to catch our breath!  But what fun and what memories!

Our first long week end was spent taking two precious grands up to Chrissy's farm for their first farm experience!  They had the greatest time!


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Being on a farm is pure heaven for children.  There was sliding down the hayloft, playing in the fort, horseback riding, four wheeling, hot tubbing, and lots of exploring. 


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While there we also celebrated Elizabeth's birthday.  Isn't that cake just the cutest?Chrissy is so stinking talented!!

And we stopped by to see Erica's new house, which I totally fell in love with!  It is one of those houses that is filled with all sorts of nooks and crannies and stair cases and special places!


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I love love love this office!  


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The kids were so excited to show off their new rooms!  They each chose their own decor and were very proud of themselves!

On Valentine's Day, Becca, Matt, and the Sweetpeas arrived from Nevada.  I had missed them all so much.  Ems is just the darn happiest baby EVER!  


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For Valentine's Day Jimmy brought home these:


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Becca and I made these yummy cupcakes for the guys.


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Really fun to make and so simple!


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The Sweetpeas!  It makes my heart sigh at how much they all love Jimmy and he loves them!  

Right on the heels of Valentine's Day we were off to the Oregon coast to celebrate Ellie's 8th birthday.  The ocean is definitely one of my favorite places to be!  We stayed in a lovely rambling beach house with lots of room for everyone and the dogs besides.  


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Ellie with some pretty big feet!


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While we got in lots of beachtime the guys went out crabbing and provided us with a crab feast…yummy!!


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Ellie is so funny and wanted Crispy Creme Donuts in place of a birthday cake. 


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No trip to the beach is complete without a trip to Mo's for some clam chowder!  Ellie got free ice cream for her birthday too!!


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All too soon it was time to come back home.  

As the month comes to a close, I have guests staying on.  Becca and the Sweetpeas will be here for another week or so.  No telling what trouble we may just get into!

Joyfully,

Patricia


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A very happy couple!!


February how did you creep up so quickly…

January certainly did slip by quickly.  It was a very busy month here at Serenity Cottage.  Many memories were made, including lots of family time.  Chrissy and the grands came for a nice long visit.  We had a grand time visiting favorite places, shopping til we dropped, cooking up yummy goodies, and the added joy of taking little Frankie with us to visit the Harley store.  


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Olive is by far one of our favorite places to eat!  
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Frankie loved those Harleys!  We could hardly keep him off them.  But then again, Jimmy seemed to want to try them all out too!   I think I could get used to one of the beautiful touring bikes.  After all there can't be that much difference between cycling and motorcycling now can there?!


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Jimmy got Frankie a Harley hat and toy.  He really rocked that hat and even slept in it!  This is one happy boy!
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Chrissy and I wanted to get in some power shopping so Jimmy stepped in with the kids while we shopped.  They had fun hamming it up for him.  

With the upcoming visit I had decided to make an Orange Chiffon Cake.  One of my favorite recipes and so durn yummy yet guilt free!  It turned out beautiful!


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I left it on the table to go run errands and when I returned all that was left was an empty cake stand.  Two very badly behaved boxers had determined that it was made especially just for them.  That meant two boxers were in the dog house!

January was surprisingly mild and we had virtually no snow this year.  Jimmy and I took advantage of the weather and headed out each week end to Lake Bennington with the gurlz.  Lake Bennington is maintained by the Corps of Engineers and has miles and miles of paths.  The scenery is breathtaking and changes season to season.


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I believe we live in one of the most beautiful places on earth!  And I am grateful for that!  

While meeting someone so special at this time in my life is the absolute best, it is made even sweeter when he has the most awesome kids and grands!  I feel extra blessed to be a part of their lives too!  Getting to know them has been so much fun.  I like to plan special things when they come over and so when I knew they were coming for Superbowl Sunday, I had planned ahead to have some fun craft projects for the grands.  While the boys watched the game, Chantelle, the kids and I exercised our creativity.  


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Such wonderful masterpieces!  And such a fun time!!

February marks my year anniversary in my new home!  It has been an amazing year.  I love my home and still get that small thrill up my spine when I open the door each evening and am greeted by my cozy little cottage.  And I am filled with gratitude for all my blessings, both large and small.   

February the month to celebrate love!  I adore Valentines Day.  It has long been one of my favorite holidays.  I remember as a child taking a shoebox to school and creating a special one of a kind box to hold all my Valentines.  The anticipation that grew as the box was filled up in the weeks leading to Valentines Day was tops.  I have a small collection of vintage Valentines that I enjoy looking through.   To this day I still love those lacy paper hearts and keep a stash just to play with.  Remember the fun of crafting huge paper Valentines for our mom, dad, and often a special boy we thought was so cute?  Lots of love went into that card along with paper and paste.  


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Such sweet sweet memories from this day!

On my needles…..


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Still making scarves.  They are so fast and easy and I can pick them up and do a few rows.  Near instant gratification!  Works for me!!

Will you be my Valentine?

Patricia