Sunday, March 29, 2020

Weekend Road Trip ~Country Roads ~Sand Lake Wildlife Refuge ~Social Distancing ~Flatten the Curve ~Stop the Spread ~A Message from Jack

The Sand Lake National Wildlife Refuge
is a quick drive from our home.

I have not ventured out and about since returning
from my trip out East to visit our Family.
This was a great opportunity to break my 14 Day Self Quarantine...
a road trip to see all the geese that are migrating north.

I had not been out here since our girls were young.

I highly recommend it.
Load up your vehicle, immediate family only.
You should be spending time with just the people
that live under your roof. It will be a nice change of scenery
from the inside walls of your home.

From a distance, that looks like snow on the lake.

But when you get closer,
it’s easy to see that it is all snow geese.

It is a stunning site to see.
(Be sure to watch the video in my comments.)

We enjoyed making our way home,
driving through the small towns,
and detouring around the flooded roads.

Jack says, 
”Get outside and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine.”

Enjoy what’s left of your weekend.
Stay Home and Stop the Spread of COVID-19.

Take care,

Friday, March 27, 2020

The Little Things That Make Me Smile ~What’s in my Inbox ~Gigi Misses that Little Boy

This Nana Gigi spent three weeks staying with our family
and looking after our Grandson
while his Mama was training for a new job.

Like all toddlers, we had lunch,
then read some books, and settled down for a little nap.

I kept watch via his monitor.
Sometimes he woke up on his own...
and sometimes it seemed like he could sleep all afternoon.

However, if you have cared for a toddler,
you know that one must limit that nap time,
so they will eventually go to sleep at night.

After two+ hours, I’d slip quietly into his room,
turn off his sound machine, open the blinds,
and sit in his rocker/glider.

From there I’d softly sing some songs.
Songs that I learned in Sunday School years and years ago.
Jesus Loves Me...
Into My Heart...and,
I’ve Got the Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy Down in my Heart.

Soon, he would let me know when he was ready
to get up and out of his bed.

The afternoons, right after naptime
were perhaps my favorite time of our day.
If he was still a little sleepy, he sit on my lap
and we’d rock and sing some more.
And he never seemed to care how well I can sing!

So, if you can imagine, I am missing those times...
Those after nap snuggles and that sweet smile.

I have cherished all the photos
that have since come in my text messages.
Thank you, Mama!

Papa and Gigi look forward to seeing you all again soon.

Take care,

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

What’cha Workin’ on Wednesday ~Spring Cleaning ~Room by Room: the Foyer ~Social Distancing ~COVID-19 ~Flatten the Curve ~Stop the Spread

I have been home for a week and a day.
Since I had traveled home from a high risk area,
in two planes, through three airports, 
I committed to self-quarantine for 2 weeks.

If  I am carrying the Virus, I don’t want
to pass it on to anyone else.

As you know symptoms don’t always show up right away,
 and the recommended time to self-isolate is 14 days.
So far, I feel perfectly fine.

When I returned home I first cleaned
everything with Lysol Spray...
my luggage,
the doorknobs,
the light switches,
the remotes,
and all the handles in the house.

Since most of you are stuck at home, there is
no better time to start your Room by Room Spring Cleaning.
As you can see, I stripped the room
and cleaned everything from top to bottom.

  I have displayed some of my grandmother’s hats.
Remember, a lady did not leave her house
without covering her head.

This is my Grandma, Hilda,
with her mother’s headstone in 1964.
He mother, Caroline,
would have been 100 years old that year.

On the back if that vintage frame, my mother’s handwriting...
From over eight decades ago.

These are the names of the girls
that she lived with in that Girls Dormitory.

Other keepsakes in our foyer include this
Vintage Chair from the Normania Country Schoolhouse,
which was just a mile from our farmhouse.

I purchased that shopping bag at the World Market
when our daughters and I traveled to Hawaii, years ago.

This doll greets everyone who visits our home.

Notice those little scissors?
They belonged to my mother’s great aunt, Birdie.
She always carried them in her purse.

Your foyer is the introduction to your home.
While it may be the smallest room in your house,
it is also important to feature the style and colors
that visitors will see when they visit the rest of your home.

It feels so good to have the foyer clean from top to bottom,
that I have moved on to tackle the next room.

And most of all, stay in touch with your
family and friends
during this time of self-isolation.

Stay safe and well.
Take care,

Monday, March 23, 2020

Monday Memories ~Celebrating our Family’s March Birthdays ~Emily’s Party Report ~And The Anticipation of Jack’s Big Day

It was a wonderful time to visit our family.
I enjoyed visiting our daughter and family in their new home
and helping to provide childcare for our grandson.

While there, I loved getting to see both daughters and sons in law,
and especially having them together under one roof...
even if it was just for an overnight stay.

Jack and his Aunty Emily have a birthday
just one week apart.
She and her hubby celebrated
with a special lunch date out while still at home.

Then the next morning, they made the 90 minute
drive to celebrate family-style with us.

With all the family chefs in the kitchen,
we put together this amazing meal of
Lettuce Wraps with Peanut Sauce,

Pot Stickers, and Ham Fried Rice.

Jack says, “I am not waiting for any photo,
I must taste this right now!”

Amy captured this selfie with
the Birthday Boy and the Birthday Girl.

After dinner, we watched Emily open her gifts,
and Jack and Uncle Jake play with Trucks and Cars.

That Morning, Amy, Jack, and I had visited a local Italian Bakery.
We saw the most amazing Cakes, Cannolis, and Pastries.

We brought home that sweet little cupcake for Jack,
and four generous slices of the Peanut Butter Mousse,
the Tiramisu, a Lemon Cake, and a Ricotta Cannoli Cake.

There was enough so we could all have a taste of each,
and some for the next day!

We had fun talking about the details of a party for Jack,
planned for the following weekend...the guests, a menu,
the cake, and age-appropriate activities.
At that time, we were still looking forward to having Papa
join me there to cherish time with family.
Of course, those plans are on hold.

I feel so fortunate to have had the time with them,
and it will be even that much sweeter
when we can be all together again.

Stay Safe and Well, everyone.

Take care,

Friday, March 20, 2020

Sending Birthday Hugs to this Special Birthday Boy

Happy Birthday to this Big Boy. Today he is two years old!

As you know this Papa and Gigi had plans to be there
for his Birthday Celebration. Since those plans changed,
we were happy to FaceTime with him today.

Look how much he has changed...
His Mama posted this Birth announcement two years ago.

I was fortunate to be able to travel to Okinawa
to visit him when he was four weeks old.
He already had so much to tell me.

And then, he came to visit us in the Midwest,
when he was four months old.

Jack enjoys the water...

Playing with his toys...

And eating good food.

I visited the family again last spring.
It has been so fun to watch him grow.

Since we couldn’t celebrate with him in person today,
we chatted and watched him open his gifts on FaceTime.

Happy Birthday, dear Jack.
We hope you had a wonderful day!

Take care,
Papa and Nana Gigi

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Happy Spring ~Things in our House Thursday ~The Little Things that Make Me Smile

Spring has Sprung.
Jack’s Mama purchased these
cheerful yellow tulips to grace our table.
Everything spring-like is a good reminder that
fresh and new is just around the corner.

While I stayed in their home, caring for Jack,
we often spent time playing outside on the patio.

We enjoyed some mild weather... then, we brought the Outside Tonka Trucks out to play.

Can you think of any better activity?!
Playing with Trucks, Cars, and Tractors is always a good time.

Today, the first day of Spring,
brings a hope of better and brighter days to come.
Happy Spring, Everyone.

Take care,

As you all know, I traveled home early due to the COVID-19 Crisis.
But I have lots of photos to share of the time spent with our family.
I hope you enjoy my memories!

Our Autumn Adventure ~Goin’ on a Road Trip ~But first, It’s been a Year

All our Bags are Packed, We’re Ready to Go… As this date rolled around, I reflect back on the past year. September 24 was the day of my acci...