Saturday, October 30, 2010


We have come to the end of an era.  I am so sad to realize that my favorite pair of pajama bottoms have seen better days, and I'm going to have to think about replacing them.  I wear my cottom pajama bottoms and a nice big sloppy T-shirt to sleep in.  Romantic, uh?  Well, in all fairness to me, he wears a CPAP mask which isn't too sexy either!  But back to the pajamas.  I think I have worn them for ten years.  They have probably been washed three times a week for ten years.  But, they have developed a problem.  Oh, they are still a lovely baby blue and white striped cotton with long wide legs.  They probably have another ten years of comfort in them, except for one thing.  The casing where the drawstring top is located has rotted out.  Yup.  Just plain rotted.
Oh, there are parts that are still holding together, enough to keep them up, but probably half of the casing is rotted out. 
I am not giving up just yet, though.  I'll wear them until the drawstring remains around my waist when I taken the pajamas off.  Then I'll know they are totally done for.  It's a sad, sad time.  I love those pajamas.  But I'm afraid it's over.

I guess I'll have to go shopping for some nice soft cotton fabric and get my Big brother out to whip up another pair.  Or two.  Maybe I'd get more years out of them if I had two pair?


Today is our baby's birthday.  He is 38.  He is one of the sweetest, kindest, most loving sons you could ever ask for.  He is also a great husband and a super father, a loyal brother and a helpful friend and neighbor and nephew!
He loves spending time with his family, and has taught his girls to love the beautiful outdoors that God created for us.  These pictures were taken this summer when they visited us at our campground hosting job.

Lance, we love you and your little family!  Have a wonderful day.  I'm guessing you are out hunting?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Oh my goodness, was it ever!  The wind has been blowing non-stop for over 24 hours, gusting over 50 MPH.  And this morning we are blessed to have precip in the form of rain, sleet, and snow!  The Minneapolis airport has only one runway open, hundreds of flights have been canceled and delayed.  The northern part of the state has a blizzard warning and temperatures are dropping down here in the southern part where I live.  And just now across the bottom of the news program on the TV, they are announcing school closings!

Welcome to Minnesota people!  Our six month season of winter has begun.  And in two months I'm outta here.

Saturday, October 23, 2010


My kid in Alaska went fishing the other day.  I guess it was a pretty good day!  Here he is lifting the 120 pound halibut with a couple smaller ones in the bin.
Here he is filleting the big one.  The halibut fillets are a bit larger than the blue gills and sunnys they get around here!  I would guess that he, and the neighborhood, will have fish for quite awhile.  And it is delicious!
I didn't ask if he minded if I posted these, so don't tell him I did, okay?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


I have piles.  Lots of piles.  I have piles all over my house.  There are piles of books on the kitchen counter, piles of table linens in a plastic bin in the bedroom, piles of paper and who knows what all on the desk chair in the sewing room, piles of ironing on the futon,  more piles of books on the table in the sewing room, and a little bit of all of the above on the dining room table.  You see, I am doing one of those move this to there projects and you know how that goes.  You can't put one thing away until you move something out, which has to go where something else is, and that can't go until this gets moved, and the spot where that goes is full of whatever. 

When I'm finished this is what I hope to have accomplished:  Move the chest from the bedroom to the sewing room, the desk from the sewing room to the dining room, one bookcase from the sewing room and one from the dining room to the bedroom, the trunk from the living room to the bedroom, and the table from the sewing room to the living room!  And, paint the chest white before putting it in the sewing room with the other white cabinets, and paint the table cranberry red before putting it in the living room.  Just because.  

And no, I haven't finished the Extreme Trailer Makeover.  I always do two or three projects at once, and it takes forever to finish them!  Maybe next time I should try doing one thing at a time.  What a novel concept!

Monday, October 18, 2010


Have I ever confessed that hubby and I married young?  Very young.  I think we were about nine or something like that, I don't remember for sure.  But we had to have been really, really young because today is our 46th anniversary and I know we can't be that old!  46 years?  You've got to be kidding me!

Here is a quick rundown of our married years:
Married October 18, 1964 and moved to Spokane, WA where hubby was stationed in the AF at Fairchild AFB.  In December we left Spokane for Bangor, ME and Dow AFB.  The two oldest kids are Maniacs.  Moved from Maine to California and Beale AFB.  Third kid is a Californian.  Moved from California to Michigan and K.I. Sawyer AFB.   Moved to North Dakota and Grand Forks AFB.  We adopted four kids.  Moved back home to Minnesota and worked at our college until 2006 when we retired to go traveling.  We drove from here to Alaska to Florida to New Foundland to California and many points in between.  In January of 2008 we moved back to Minnesota to help care for my mom.  Mom lost her battle with brain cancer in July 2008.  We are still living in Minnesota.  The end.

We have no big celebration planned.  In fact someone didn't even realize it was the 18th today!  I am doing some decluttering and I figure if I purge three bookcases worth of books that I deserve a Nook.  Just saying.

Saturday, October 16, 2010


We are in the midst of redecorating the RV.  We bought it used, so had no real choice in what we got.  It had a small flip down couch and a built in dinette set.  Both were a problem.  The couch was half way comfortable, and served as a bed for my sister Lois when she traveled with us, but if it was just me and Ernie it wasn't a good deal.  You see, he claimed it, usually as I was doing dinner dishes, and once he was reclining on it I had no place to sit.  Except in the uncomfortable dinette set, which wasn't very relaxing.  So, we took out the couch and replaced it with two very inexpensive glider rocker type chairs, each with a matching footstool.  Now I have a place to relax too!  And they are quite comfortable.  I just hope they hold up as they really were cheap!   And don't worry. Lois will have a bed.  She can sleep on the lower bunk in the back where we usually stored things.

The dinette set was uncomfortable, and was really unhandy when we had friends over for dinner or to play cards.  First of all, two adults sitting on the one side was really close, and secondly, playing cards with two people right next to each other just leads to cheating......the men always looked at us gals' hands!  So the next improvement was to remove the dinette set.  It actually was quite the project as some of the screws were hidden, or were underneath spots where you couldn't get a tool in to remove them.  So Ernie worked a whole day on that and finally got both benches and the table out.  Our dining area is now furnished with a small table and chair set he found on Craig's List, also pretty cheap!  And each person can have their own side!

So, we ended up with a couple of holes in the wall where the screws were especially stubborn, and a few spots on the carpet that were damaged.  You know how redecorating works.  You fix one thing and it leads to another and another, seemingly ad infinitum.   Yesterday we picked out a carpet remnant, also cheap, to do that small area, and SSIL (super son in law) will lay that for us.  I am heading in to town now to pick out a roll of wallpaper to cover just the bottom half of the wall in the slideout where the dinette was attached.   

The weather has been absolutely unbelievable these past two weeks and we have really enjoyed being outdoors.  I hope it hope it holds out as we finish up the extreme trailer makeover.  We all know what's coming, probably sooner than we think!

Pictures will follow when the job is completed.

Monday, October 11, 2010

POST #900

For post #900, we are going back in time a couple of weeks, and returning to Ely, Fall Lake State Forest Campground, and the Echo Trail.   This is a picture of one of the campsites.  Beautiful.
We met this guy, Ted maybe?, at the new Bear Center in Ely.  It's a nicely done center where you can view the bear living in a pretty natural setting.  It was really a lot of fun, and a great way to take tons of photos!
We drove another of our favorite trails, this one the Echo Trail.  The first miles out of Ely are paved, then it becomes gravel.

 Not much color, but I love the shadows.
 Isn't this a beautiful part of our state?  Minnesota in the fall is so colorful.  Have I mentioned that I love October?

Friday, October 08, 2010


The weather this week has been super!  So beautiful~just the kind of fall I love.  Ernie decided we should take advantage of it so we did a quick camping trip, just two nights, and in a nearby state park, so it wasn't a big deal to pack up and just take off.
 With our unusually warm temps we really didn't need a fire, but what is camping without a campfire?

 And it did feel good during the evening when we connected our TV outside and sat by the fire to watch the Twins/Yankees playoff game.  The Twins lost.  Both nights.  Bummer.
Thursday morning we decided to go for a hike into the little town a couple of miles from the park.  Minnesota has a wonderful rails to trails program where abandoned railroad beds are turned into hiking trails.  One of the trails runs through the park, and goes right into the town where two of our grandsons, Jacob and Caleb, live.  Caleb was in school of course, and Jacob was probably sleeping from working the night shift at the nursing home, so we didn't see them.
The small lake in town was quiet and smooth, a perfect reflecting pool for the bright colors on these buildings.
 I think this is an apartment building, but whatever it is, I love the red bush.
 And no lake is complete without ducks, right?
 I love the iridescent heads on mallards.
 Back to the campground.  This wasn't our site, but is a favorite of mine.  We had visitors last night.  My sister and BIL who live close by, came out for dinner and to watch the baseball game.  As I already said, we lost again.  One more chance....tomorrow night.

We packed up and came home this morning.  This afternoon the temp hit 90 degrees!  Last year at this time we were camping Up North and we had snow.  What a difference!


Tomorrow would be John Lennon's 70th birthday.  Unbelievable!  That does not seem possible to me.

Monday, October 04, 2010


These three gorgeous chicks from the late 50's are my sister Betsy, my cousin LaVonne, and myself.  We thought we were so cool in our bandannas!  My cousin lived in that house in the background of the photo, right next door to my grandma, so summer vacations were great fun for the three of us.  We spent a lot of time pretending to be The McGuire Sisters, and argued who was Christine and who was Phillis,  none of us wanting to be Dorothy!  We also liked to roller skate with the clamp on skates that required a key to tighten the clamps.  Of course we wore the key on a shoe string around our necks.
But our very favorite thing to do was to walk to the end of the street, which was a dead end, and play in the creek. Most of the time, the depth was probably about three inches!  In spots, or if we dug holes in the sandy bottom, we would be lucky to have a few more inches, enough to actually sit in or pretend to float in!  We spent many happy hours in this creek, wading and splashing and just sitting in the water and day dreaming.

I remember so well this particular summer day.  We got permission to go to the creek, and the three of us set off, across the street, and past the house of the scary lady we either called The Witch or The Crazy Lady, and we probably skipped the remaining block to the creek.  Now this wasn't just any creek!  The bottom of this creek was covered in beautiful golden sand, clean and soft, seldom littered with rocks or weeds.  The water was crystal clean, and on this day the sun was creating sparkling diamonds all across the surface, and I think that's what got us into trouble!  We started walking down the creek, following the diamond studded flow of the water.  We went too far.  We went around a couple of curves in the path of the creek.  We lost track of time.  We were having the time of our lives.  And we ended up quite a distance from our starting point.

And then we looked up.  There, silhouetted in the bright sun, standing like a giant on the creek bank, was our grandpa.  And he was mad.  We had never seen him so mad.  He was a gentle man, a hard working, kind, very giving man.  And he was boiling mad!  And we were scared.  No, we were petrified! 

I don't remember the outcome other than he yelled at us.  Grandpa yelled at us!  It was awful.  Turns out that he was scared that we had been hurt, had drowned, had been kidnapped, or whatever other dangers went on in a grandpa's mind when his grandkids weren't in the creek at the end of the street where they were supposed to be. 

And every time my sister and I get together with our cousin, like we did this past week, we talk about the time we got in trouble in the creek.


Well, personally, I think they did make a mistake.  Tonight was the Homecoming Coronation at the high school that one of my grandsons attends.  Caleb was one of the candidates for king.  And the queen from last year placed the crown on the head of one of the other candidates, crowning him king for this year.  I think it must have been a mistake!  Certainly this good looking kid, my grandson,  should have been the winner, don't ya think?  Well, as far as I am concerned Caleb, you are the king!
And I need a new camera.  You can't shoot pictures way across the gym unless you have a good camera with a telephoto lens.  I don't.  So this is far away, but Caleb and the gal he escorted are really cute!

Sunday, October 03, 2010


Last night I received a text from son Chris, who lives in Alaska.  He said he was making tomato soup with yogurt, basil and a bit of rosemary.  I had to confess that we were having a hamburger patty and a romaine salad.  Not quite as good as homemade tomato soup

So tonight I thought I had him!  I texted him that I made squash soup with butter, onions, chicken broth,  cream and Penzey's Bouquet Garni herb mix.  He answered back immediately saying he had smoked a bear roast for stew  and was making French bread.
Okay.  You win this round.,  But I'll get you yet! 

And just so you know.  The squash soup was absolutely delicious!

Saturday, October 02, 2010


Ask my kids.  I have this urge to recite poetry learned in my childhood, sing a song from my teenage years, or quote a line from a movie whenever some image or event connects me with a memory from the past. Actually,  my siblings also have this urge.  It must be a genetic thing!  Thus, last week Up North, when my sister and I were walking along the lake taking pictures of the beautiful fall colors, and I came upon this sight, I had to break out into............

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore--
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
"'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door--
Only this, and nothing more." 
The Raven - Edgar Allan Poe  (1809-1849)
Of course earlier in the week I had already done this one.....
By the shores of Gitche Gumee,
By the shining Big-Sea-Water,
Stood the wigwam of Nokomis,
Daughter of the Moon, Nokomis.
Dark behind it rose the forest,
Rose the black and gloomy pine-trees,
Rose the firs with cones upon them;
Bright before it beat the water,
Beat the clear and sunny water,
Beat the shining Big-Sea-Water.
There the wrinkled old Nokomis
Nursed the little Hiawatha,
Rocked him in his linden cradle,
Bedded soft in moss and rushes.
Safely bound with reindeer sinews;

The Song of Hiawatha by  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882

Do kids learn these poems anymore?  I don't think so.  We remember the words to countless Elvis and other rock and roll songs.  Will the words of their top ten tunes still be sung 50 years from now!  I know the answer to that one is for sure a loud NO!  What do they have in their memory?  I love all those little gems I have in my memory.....will they love what is in their memory?

Sorry for the goofy formatting.  I copied those words from a site that will not let me change the color etc!