Wednesday, December 31, 2008


We loaded the last of the supplies into the trailer, put the perishables into the truck.......and it wouldn't start! I guess it was tired of sitting in the below zero temperatures and decided this morning to refuse to turn over. So Bob-a-Loo and Chip crawled under the hood to see what was wrong.
Ernie jumped the truck with the van and soon it yielded to our demands and cranked over.
And we were ready to go.....10 below or not!

Let me introduce you to our traveling companions. First in the back on the left is Aqua Maria, friend of our granddaughter, Madison. Next to her on the right is Jammin' Jaden, friend of granddaughter, Jaden. In the front we have Chip with the bulging eyes, owned by grandson, Ben, and the much loved Bob-a-Loo, who belongs to granddaughter, Anna. We were only going to take the girls' friends, but somehow Chip got in there too. I tried at the last minute to get a friend from grandson Nicolas to come along, but Nicolas had already left on his trip to the Wisconsin Dells so we couldn't get permisssion to take anyone along. Maybe one of his friends can accompany us to Alaska next summer.
Everyone was excited. None of these extra travelers had left the state of Minnesota before!

They saw forests of wind generators in north central Iowa.

And lots of clouds of steam and smoke by the big cities billowing up into the cold, calm air.
There wasn't a lot of snow, but it was really sparklie, a nice touch for New Year's Eve.
Farm buildings silhouetted against the golden sunset make a nice picture,

as do the bare trees and bushes.

It was a very nice sunset in southeastern Iowa and we enjoyed it for many miles.

The travelers were tired and ready for bed when we stopped in Hannibal Missouri, where the temperature is a balmy 23 degrees. Above zero!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


It's official. We are leaving in the morning. Yes, it's a day early, but there is snow expected again on Thursday, so we'll just head south tomorrow, going as far as we can, and hopefully getting away from the snow. I'm almost finished packing, but have a load of clothes to wash yet, and the frig to clean out.

We are going to be accompanied by a few little beanie babies or stuffed animals from the three littlest granddaughters. We're taking them on an adventure.

Hope we find a place with wireless tomorrow night so we can give you the details of our first day!

Happy New Year!

Monday, December 29, 2008


I thought my hair cut and doctor appointment were today, but they are tomorrow. Thank goodness! I did not sleep last night, and when I got up this morning I felt sick. Yup. I am sick. I guess I caught the food poisoning my sister had! And I also guess that she didn't have food poisoning. It's the stomach flu bug.

Then this morning Ernie announced that we should maybe leave on Wednesday instead of Thursday because snow is expected on Thursday. I can be ready, if I start feeling better soon so I can get back at the packing and laundry.

But first I'm going to take a nap if the stomach cramps will allow it.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

JUST THOUGHT I'D MENTION THIS....................

Click for Panama City, Florida Forecast

Click for Eagle Lake, Minnesota Forecast


This tiny sad looking tree will be taken down today. It is missing many ornaments. I had bought clear glass ornaments,
had gone to the bank and requested brand spanking new bills, and then rolled up the money and stuffed it into the clear ball and hung them on the tree for the grandkids. My money tree! The kids seemed to like the non-traditional way to receive their Christmas money. And it was easy!But today the thoughts are here! Time to dig out the little Nomad and

pack her up and head South. I just realized I haven't given you a tour of our home for the next two months, so I just put on some shoes and my jacket, and in my cute pink jammies I went out to take these pictures for you.
This is my stove. Just three burners, no oven. There is a small microwave above the stove though. Wish I had recipes for cooking in the microwave.....I seldom use mine! But I will bring my crock pot, and I do enjoy using that often.
This is the TINY bathroom. There are four inches between the seat and the counter, and maybe even less on the door side, so it's tight! There is a small shower on the left side, but we won't be using it as a shower. It's going to become a storage unit! I plan to have my dirty clothes, a Rubbermaid container of extra jackets, blankets and shoes, and other large items stored in here. Our closet is about 18 inches wide, so there isn't much room there.
We will have to shop about every other day for produce and meat as this is the fridge we will have for the next two months! It, too, is small. I think we'll also have to have a cooler to keep some water and juice in. We lived in here for a week this past summer, but never for two months. It may be a little tight!

BUT, we are excited to use our new cabinet. The bed/sleeping spot used to be the two bench seats on the side that are also the two beds, and then there was a cushion across the back, also for seating. We found that we never used that spot. With the table there, it would make it very awkward to get in and out if we were to try to sit there. So we took the cushion out and had a friend build this cabinet for us. Before the only storage space was the two overhead cupboards where you see the doors. That's not much space. Now we have three shelves behind the upper doors and a nice big spot on the bottom of this new cabinet. I think it will be great! And didn't Pat do a super job of matching the interior?

Now it's time for me to get dressed and as soon as Ernie plugs in the heater to warm up the camper a bit, I'll get out there and start packing stuff in. The hardest thing will be to remember not to put anything out there that might freeze! All the toiletries, cleaning supplies and foods that are in anyway liquid will have to be packed in a laundry basket and hauled in the back seat of the truck until we cross the freeze/no freeze line!

Thursday, December 25, 2008




Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Away in a manger, no crib for a bed
The little Lord Jesus lay down His sweet head
The stars in the bright sky looked down where He lay
The little Lord Jesus asleep on the hay.
The cattle are lowing, the baby awakes
But little Lord Jesus, no crying He makes.
I love Thee Lord Jesus! Look down from the sky,
And stay by my cradle till morning is nigh.
Be near me, Lord Jesus; I ask Thee to stay
Close by me forever and love me, I pray.
Bless all the dear children in Thy tender care
And take us to heaven to live with Thee there.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

My friend Joni over at Morning Coffee is playing a game about favorite things starting with a specific letter. It goes like this: If you want to play you leave a comment saying you'd like a letter and I'll assign you one. Then you write about 10 things that you love that start with your letter. Post it on your blog, have people comment, assign them a letter, and the chain continues. I thought it sounded like fun, so I am playing. Joni gave me the letter "M" goes!

Mom.....the beautiful lady in the purple is my mom. She has been living in heaven with Jesus since July 15. I miss her. I love her.
The other pretty lady is mom's sister, Elaine. I love her too!

My Morning coffee, made with fresh ground beans and in a French Press. No better coffee on earth!

And I love Joni's blog, Morning Coffee ! I really should count this twice!

I love Minnesota! I love the four seasons. I love the trees, flowers, lakes, birds and all the wildlife. I love our State Parks. I love Lake Superior and Duluth, and the North Shore.

However, right now I'm already tired of the winter we're having this year. One storm is followed within days by another storm. Snow is pretty, but wind and cold temperatures aren't!

And I love Mountains. This happens to be Pikes Peak in the summer of 2007, but I love all mountains. Denali in Alaska is breathtaking. The Canadian Rockies are awesome. Glacier National Park is easily one of the best places to view mountains. And flying from Amsterdam to Venice over the Alps is a thrill! Mountains are beautiful!

I love Music. Almost all kinds of music. When we were kids, my dad would play the Boston Pops for us, and we grew to love their music. We had a record player and I remember the 78 records. I especially loved The Grand Canyon Suite. Right now I am listening to Peter Ostroushko and the music he composed for a PBS special on Minnesota and the early settlers on the prairie. I also love his CD called Postcards.

I love Michelangelo! I love him even more since I was privileged to go to Italy with the art classes from the college where I worked. The Sistine Chapel is absolutely wonderful! David is so beautiful. And the Pieta takes your breath away. I stood in front of the glass protecting the Pieta with tears rolling down my face. It was one of those moments I will never forget.

I love Marriage. I love knowing my hubby will be there, always. Just to know that no matter what I do that he may not like (like write about his Garmin!) he will still be there. I am not always lovable, but he loves me anyway.

This picture is my parents on their wedding day. Wasn't my mom the most beautiful bride you have ever seen? They had a great marriage. I never once heard a discouraging word!

I love Merlot. Several nights a week we have a glass of wine, either before dinner, or with our dinner. Just one.

And I love Material, or fabric (but that starts with F!). I like to make quilted things, table runners, quilts, etc. I like what you can to with different colors and designs, and how changing one little element can change the whole thing.
There. I think that's 10 M's. Remember, if you'd like to do this, leave me a comment requesting a letter, and I'll give you one!
Things sure move around when you're trying to put text alongside the photos. Sorry about that!


I'm guessing that hubby will get out of his recliner today! This morning the Christmas gift he ordered for himself (he said it was for both of us....thanks.....just what I wanted!) arrived and he will be out playing with it, for sure. He bought himself a Garmin. Now we had a GPS already, a gift from two of our kids several years ago, but it was a hand held one, and I guess he needed the real bi*ch on the dash one.

Well we now have it. I doubt if it will find a shorter way to town......we know which road is the most direct. There isn't much you can do differently in four miles! It will be like the trip up north with Neil a couple of weeks ago where there was a constant argument between the driver and the voice inside the little box. The lovely lady on the dash starts yelling at you "turn right immediately. Recalculating," every time you don't do what she says, which was at least 50% of the time. How is that little sweetie supposed to know about the Burnadotte cutoff, or the Brownton short cut? She sits on the dash and spends most of her time recalculating because you don't follow her directions. So why do you need it? You're going to go your own way anyhow!

Do you think for one minute that I believe you'll follow her route to Florida? Say, just for instance, if I would ask it to find the closest quilt shop, or Starbucks or Cold Stone Creamery along the way. Will you go there? Don't answer. I know you will drive right on by.

Guess what? I'm not real happy about this joint Christmas gift! Do you think there is a way I can go inside her pretty little brain and delete all the golf courses?

Monday, December 22, 2008


Notice all the sunflower seeds on top of the snow? One of the feeders was blown totally empty of seeds. Hope the birds find it on the ground before it gets covered again tonight and tomorrow with the next five inches.
I opened the front door to this scene the other night!

During the minus 12 temps and the minus 35 wind chill!
Lot of snow sculptures out there.
Ernie shoveled our driveway, but the neighbor didn't do his!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

M4GW (Minnesotans for Global Warming)


NOTE: ESPECIALLY FOR LISA: I did not take these pictures while driving! Ernie was driving, so I could just shoot away. They're still all taken through the windshield, but I wasn't driving!

This is one of the hills in town. It doesn't look like much from the high seat in the big Ford truck, but it's quite steep, and we were going very slow.
An intersection at the bottom of another hill. SCARY!
Why are all these people in town anyhow? Don't they know it's a blizzard? Silly people!

Heading home. And I'm glad I'm not driving. The weather outside is frightful. Hey, that should be the line of a Christmas song!

We're only about 4.5 mile from town. Glad it's no further.
Limited visibility........

It doesn't get any better either!

There is a water tower in the above photo.........a bit to the right of center......
Only two blocks from home............

Isn't it beautiful? If you were at my house for coffee this afternoon, you would all be spending the night. It's a good thing you're not house needs cleaning. Now I'm off to make Pioneer Woman's Molasses Cookies.