Sunday, February 28, 2010

So Tired of Winter!

We've had a beautiful winter, but I'm ready for spring!  Not the mud that I know will be around a couple of weeks, but for something green to grow!  I've been in a blogging rut, not knowing what to write about.  I'm busy every day, but it seems kind of boring.  Busy sewing, and nothing finished yet.  Had some computer problems, having to drive to Fargo two days in a row.  We did get a new car, bigger that the Rav4 we had.  The seats in the Rav4 weren't comfortable for hubby when driving very far.  When we'd gotten the Rav4, we'd downsized, so now we just upsized again!  The new SUV rides like a dream!  It will be great for our driving south to see kids. 

Just before my trip south, my Christmas Cactus started to bud.  Here are some pictures of the flowers on it now. 

There are more buds coming, so there will be some color on this plant for awhile!  Now why couldn't it flower at Christmas time?  I bought it last year from  Amanda (grand daughter) as they were selling them for a fund raiser for her high school choir before the holidays.  She brought it home to me when it was below zero, and the buds it had on it then, froze and fell off.  I was about to get rid of the plant before this Christmas, because I was thinking it was a lost cause to flower.  But patience prevailed!  Now it's a keeper, and I guess it will just flower when it is good and ready too!  Must be once a year that it flowers.   I really don't know too much about these plants; when will it flower again; and after the flowers drop or get pinched off do  I need to put it somewhere to rest; should it be replanted, or do they like to be root bound, etc.  I'll learn as I go.  Maybe I should find some info to read up on these plants.  It's been sitting in my sewing room all winter with  south filtered sun  coming through blinds that are pulled down.  Now I moved it to the living room so we can enjoy the flowering, but I;m wondering if that move may not be the best.  Now it will get filtered sun from the East.  Is that enough?   I will have to watch it closely and see.  I know that some people have had their Christmas Cactus plants for many years.  Hopefully I'll be able to keep this one without killing it too.

This is how I'll enjoy some green and color for awhile!

Have a Great Sunday!  It's a nice sunny day here and the temperture is in the low 20's.  The end of February, March coming in like a Lamb!  We can still get a lot of snow in this area through March and April, but hopefully, the temperatures won't go below zero any more.    Come on Spring!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Shoot Me! 8 of 52 Challenge


While I was in Louisiana, I had a few pictures taken of myself, with my youngest daughter and grand daughter!  Lucky me!
Now that I'm home, I just have to look at these pictures until our next trip south!  Don't know when that will be.
The kids want to come home for a summer visit this year, but we'll see.  Depends on lots of things.  Money - for example!!!!

With son-in-law.  Renee has her Daddy's heart!  So fun to watch both Jess and Floyd with Renee!  It's great to be doing this Shoot Me Challenge.  Now we'll all have pictures of me too!

Be sure to check out the other "Shoot Me" bloggers at Forever in Blue Jeans at .

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Our First Daughter's Birthday!

Happy Birthday Leah!

February 21, 1967 - a wonderful little girl was born.  In looking for pictures, I remember I gave Leah a few photo albums with her pictures, so right now I couldn't find all the pictures I could  show you.  Here is a picture of her on her baptism day, April 16, 1967 with my mother, father and my sister Georgia. 

December 1968 - With me - almost a year old!  She's so beautiful - then and now!

This was in April of 1969 - two years old!  She loved to push her stuffed animals or Grandma Helga's dog in her bugggy.

Two years old - one of my most favorite pictures of Leah!

Here she is in 1976 in 4th grade!  Freckles, crooked teeth and all!  I couldn't find a picture now with her in braces. 

And as a young girl - with her best friend and the wind in her hair!  She would ride Curly Jo every day.


Saturday, February 20, 2010

Mardi Gras Parade #2 on Fat Tuesday!

The last for Mardi Gras on Fat Tuesday.  We attended our second parade in little Grand Marais.  This little town is very small, but they put on a nice parade for area families.  Not over crowded like New Orleans, or other big cities.  No garbage left behind.  Everyone friendly.  The day started out very chilly, and windy.  We put up a pop up tent, and tied a sheet to block the wind on one side of the tent.  We didn't want Renee to get wind or sun burned.  It was chilly enough to keep our jackets on the whole time.  We got there about 11 am for a 1 pm parade.  Jess and Floyds friends were all parked here together and we had a great time. 
These were some costume winners from the previous nights contest.  They couldn't wear all their headresses, etc. because it was too windy.

Renee with her crown, Floyd and Jessica.

There were some very big floats, double decks, and so many beads thrown.  We collected ours all together after the parade and Jessica will be donating them to the local Goodwill.  They sort them out and repackage them for next years parade.  I was glad to hear that they are recycled!
They also throw out Mardi Gras cups, footballs and stuffed animals.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Vietnamese New Year!

Sunday we went to Floyd's parents home.  It was the New Year Celebration for his step dad's family.
This picture is of GrandPa, and Renee was born on his birthday.  On July 2nd she will be one year old and he will be 100!  His family came from VietNam to the US with his family of 7 children and his wife.  He doesn't speak English, but Hoa has told us stories of how they were on little fishing boats and in camps.  I just can't imagine how that must have been to have left your homeland without anything but your family.  All of the 7 children have families and have done very well.  They were all here to celebrate their New Year and his birthday.  They don't celebrate birthdays on the birthdate, but on the new year, the adults hand out little red or gold envelopes with money  inside to all the children that are there.   Here is a picture of the envelopes that Renee got.  In the picture is also a little rice cake wrapped up in banana leaves.  The green is a cake too.  There is a middle layer that is yellow.  That was given to me. 

There was so much food to eat.  My northern stomach isn't used to many spicy things, and I thought I was being careful by eating only steak, 2 egg rolls  and some rice.  But my stomach has been upset since Sunday, so it may be from the one 1/2 shot of hard liquor that they were making sure everyone had to celebrate!  I'm not a drinker and told Floyds uncle that, so he barely put some in, but it was really strong stuff!  When you gulped it down, everyone shouted!  It was a fun cultural day!  Of course there was fire works - a long string that burned and was really loud.  We took Renee inside then.  One of the uncles had rented a big jumping thing to keep kids entertained.  Some adults even jumped in it!

There was squid, buffalo insides, crab, oysters, ham (seasoned differently), crab cakes, different kind of seasoned steaks, and shrimp. There was so much food!  Seaweed, a big pot of soup.  The bright orange plate there is a carrot dish.  I tried one bite of it, but it was already cold, so don't know if it was supposed to have been eaten hot or cold.  It looks like carrots, but not sure what it was.  I love the egg rolls, but they don't like me! 

GrandPa was having a good day.  He enjoyed having his family around him and all the kids there. Happy New Year to a special GrandPa.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Mardi Gras Parade #1 Saturday

After feeding Renee and eating breakfast this morning we left for Youngsville (close to Lafayette).   For those that have been here with us before, remember when we went to Lafayette, and went on what Jess and Floyd called the short cut - where you turned off Hwy 90, we went straight ahead on the tar road, instead of turning right after the first 2 miles.  That bring us to Youngsville, and it is a little town like Nevis.  We parked at a hunting friend's little burger joint on the main drag.  They had a DJ playing loud music the whole day.  We got there at 9:30 AM to have a place for the 1 PM parade!!!!!!!!!   It was a bright sunny and chilly day today.  Jessica got a good sun/wind burn and little Renee has pretty pink cheeks too.  In the morning we were on the shady side of the street, and we didn't have her in the sun too much, but with a little one and tender skin, it doesn't take much.  When she slept she was in her stroller all covered up from the breeze and sun.  We ate 1/3 lb burgers (rather spicy) - but really good and juicy.  A lot of people brought their own grills and set up on the parade route as early as we were, and cooked for their own party of people.  The parade started about 1:15 PM and lasted til about 2:30 PM  - BEADS every where!    "Hey Mister, Throw me something!"  and   "WHO DAT!"  Everyone shouted!  I tried to get pictures of the beads flying through the air -  Some were thrown out in bunches!   There was even one float that was playing the music of that guy that tried out on American Idol - "Pants On The Ground"!  Of course, everyone chimed in and sang along! Twas fun!

Don't you love this Buck?!?!?

We tried to get someone to throw us BIG beads like that guy has on!

Eating her carrots and cereal  supper!
We got home about 3:30 PM and after her supper and bottle and bath, Renee is now SOUND asleep!  Jess and Floyd have company over, and I'm busy getting this done and checking on Renee every once in awhile.  I hope her big day out won't to be too disrupting for her.  She is such a good baby.  You know when she is tired and hungry.  That's about the only time she gets fussy.  Her teeth are bothering her again, as she is slobbering more and sucking on her bottom lip and biting everything she can.  You can see that her bottom gum has two white bumps! 

We are going to another parade on Fat Tuesday in Lydia.  This little town is like Osage, and the parade is just as good as the one we went to today!  Also to a costume contest, I think on Monday.  More pictures will be coming.  I think I'll be really tired on the way home Wednesday!


Friday, February 12, 2010

Granddaughter Renee

She's now 7 months old.  A real sweetheart!  She has grown since Christmas, and I'm glad I got to babysit a couple of days so I could have her all to myself!   Next week Jessica has a week  off - no school.  

So big!

Won't be long and she'll be crawling!
After bath time!  She loves her bath.
Just look at those BiG Blue Eyes!
The chicken high chair I sent down last month, made it here in good shape.  The foot rest has to be attached, and is sitting there on the seat.  Isn't this cute.  I have a youth chair at our house that has hens and chicks on it.  The lady that painted them lives just north of Minneapolis.  

Today Odda went to the vet to get her stitches out.  Steve had to take her!  The hair is growing back on the shaved area below the eye, and I bet by the time I get home, she'll be back to normal.  Steve said that the vet told him  "we almost lost her!"  Steve assumed he meant during the surgery, but no, the doc meant that he liked her so well, that he almost kept her!   (maybe a puppy sale prospect, huh?)  So tonight Odda will be back out in her kennel - I bet she is one happy dog!  Although she really was pretty good inside.  Her big tail gets her in trouble!  And that cone got in the way when she was in the house - that was even worse than her tail.

It's been raining since I got here.  Northern Louisiana has snow and highways are closed up north.  This evening we went to Jessica's last basketball game of the season.  I was here last year for the last basketball game of the season too.  The girls played very good, but did loose the game.  Stayed for most of the boys game, and that was a close game, with Catholic High winning.  They just need to win one more game to get into district tournements.  This was the last game for the girls team this year.  Renee loved all the kids making over her.  I think every girl on the BB team held her awhile.  I don't think she will be a shy little girl at all!  

More pictures another day. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Shoot Me! 6 of 52 Challenge

When you see this weeks shoot me picture of baby Renee and I (it was taken at Christmas); I'll be on my way to Louisiana to visit them for a week.  I'll be flying from Fargo, ND to Lafayette Louisiana, arriving there at 8:30 pm.  This little airport is only 30 minutes away from the kids.  Previous trips I've flown into New Orleans, and that is about 2 hours away.  The planes I'll be on for this trip are all smaller ones, so we'll see how the trip goes.  I'm hoping for good weather!    I'll be there for a week - So will have new pictures for you  if I find time to post while I'm there!  More later. 

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Yesterdays Woes!

Update on Odda!  She is doing well.  Steve will be taking her back to the vet on Friday the 12th to get her stitches out.
Don't ya just lover her cone!  With all this snow we have when she goes outside it works as a good scoop!  I laugh at her because I have to clean the snow out when she comes in!  Just a few more days Odda!  Then you'll be able to run around without that thing, and you won't bump into everything in the house.  You'll be able to go EVERYWHERE!  I'll be thinking about her when I'm down south, wondering how all is going.  I'd like to be a mouse in the car and at the vet when Steve takes her there!  I'm sure if she will need to continue to have more ointment put in her eye area, that he'll need to have either Leah or neighbor Connie (Far Side) come help him!

Yesterday I was having a bad day!  It started on Sunday, when I was washing clothes, the washing machine made an awful noise when spinning the water out, and I thought maybe it was off balance due to the load, so I repositioned the clothes, and it didn't help.  I thought maybe I was in trouble, but that was the last wash load for the day.  Had mentioned to Steve, that we might have a problem, but I'd know for sure when I would wash the next load.  Well - that was yesterday, and we were in trouble.  I'm trying to get ready for my trip, and had a load in the washer.  I didn't hear any noise, so kind of forgot about it, but when I went downstairs to check, I found a tub full of water, and the timer said off.  So the timer worked the whole cycle, but the clothes were still there in a tub of wash water.  I called where I'd bought the washer and dryer in March of 2007 (so it wasn't over 3 years old!), and asked if they could send a repair man out yesterday or today, as I was going to be leaving on Wednesday and needed to get caught up on laundry and get ready for my trip.  I emptied the water out by using a cottage cheese plastic bowl, and scooped the water into an ice cream bucket and then emptied it into the drain!  That took awhile.  Wring out clothes - boy I'm not very good at that.  My hands just don't twist wet clothes very well any more. 

The repair man came before 10:30 am and took it all apart and found that the transmission went out.  EXPENSIVE!  darn! It was quoted something over $365.00 for this trip,  part and install.  So we bought a new machine for  just under $600.00.   Now we have a warranty for 1 year again.   Three years ago when we needed a new set, I had wanted to get a front loading set, but where we have the washer and dryer, there wasn't enough space, so I had to get a top loading set.  They have the energy star, so I'll get a $25.00 rebate from our utility.  It's just too darn bad, that these appliances can't be made to last longer!  It just irks me, that the money spent on these appliances and they don't last long.  Like how can washing for two people wear out a transmission in just 3 years.  We've had washers and dryers last 15 years when we had all 5 of us here!   The new machine is exactly the same, the only new feature is that you don't choose the water level you want, it does it automatically (something else to go wrong later!), and if you open the lid after the washer has started, then it adds more water to a higher level.....  That's just down right stupid!  I need to change my way of starting a load now.  Depending on what I washed, I sometimes added the soap first and then the clothes after the tub was started filling.  Can't do that now.  Now put clothes in, soap and shut the lid!   I'm  sure I'll get used to it, and it'll save on water.  I'm sure that is what the feature is for.  Saving water, as I know that each wash load at the regular level uses 40 gallons of water for each the wash and rinse load. Learned that when we sold washers and dryers at work.  That is a lot of water.

I propbably wouldn't be so anxious about having spent this money on a new washer or repair if I hadn't just put new tires on my car for over $600.00 and then Odda's surgery at $292.00!   Dah - my saving for a rainy day is now pretty empty.  And I wanted at least $200.00 for spending money on my trip!  Oh well - we'll eat beans and bacon for awhile after I get home and get that savings built back up again!

I did have a good email yesterday.  I won a gift certificate from a local very nice restraurant (that we haven't been too) from the POWER UP group that Leah and I have joined through the Community Education.  I'll go pick it up today when I go to town for bell practice this afternoon/evening. This is the multi-community wellness challenge that we are doing.  In fact I am doing ok with this challenge.  Just some trouble yet with "Grazing" once in awhile.  I need to pick Grazing for my next week challenge.  I've got the Water down pretty good, drinking over 64 oz every day.  When you drink that much water, you don't even want pop.  Still need to exercise more tho.  My back has been giving me fits the past 2 weeks, so haven't done anything but walk.  I had lifted too much, and couldn't move for a couple of days.  Getting better, but still hurts getting up and down even from the sitting position (especially from the couch, as it's lower than a chair).   Hope I don't have trouble on my trip!  

Sunday, February 7, 2010

257 Miles of Snowmobile Trails Near Us!

Our vacationland area is both summer and winter!  With the good snow base we have this year and the snowfall we continue to get makes this a great year for snowmobiling.  There are 257 miles of groomed trails in a two county area.  A groomed trail runs along the front of our property, (we have 80 acres) and we have been fortunate enough to have had a good experience with snowmobilers and 4 wheelers running along our property.  Only a few have gone out into the pasture area.  The problem can be when they see a track, all other snowmobiliers think it's okey to follow that track, even if it's off the groomed trail.

Some property owners complain so much about their driveways getting tore up by the 4 wheelers and also snowmobile tracks.  I think those owners are the ones that have somewhat of a raised driveway, a good ditch, and that gives the riders a good jump to go over, thus digging up the snow/dirt away from the culverts, and tearing up their driveway edges.

The tractors that pull the groomers are big, and make a lot of noise!  They go past our property sometimes during the day, but I've heard them very late at night too.  The tractor pulls a big heavy flat  bardge type groomer that leaves a nice flat wide trail.  No teeth marks are left from the track of the tractor.  When fallen tree branches from too heavy snow lay across the trail, the driver has to get it out of the way.  That has been a problem this year with all the wet heavy snow we've had.   There are three of these large groomers that take care of the 257 miles in our county and the county next to us.  They are out on the trails Mondays through Thursdays getting the trails ready for the weekend riders.  Our area brings in snowmobile riders from southern MN, North and South Dakota.  This year southern MN has more snow than we do in northern MN; and there is also wonderful snowmobile riding up the in the Duluth area, what they call the Arrowhead Region of MN.   They get the "lake effect" snow off of Lake Superior, and I hear the snowmobiling up there is great this year.

Years ago we snowmobiled!  Back in the 70's.  It was so fun and with our group of friends, we'd ride sometimes almost all night long!  Nothing is as pretty as riding under a full moon, through the snow laden trees, with branches heavy with snow making a tunnel to ride through.  Sometimes on Sundays, we all take our kids, pulling sleds behind, with the little ones all bundled up with blankets.  We'd ride to one of our friends deer hunting area, and dig a big hole; start some coals to burning, and as the coals get red we'd lay in pork roasts all double wrapped in foil, and then cover up the hole.  We'd go riding some more and then when we'd get back, the meat would be done, and we'd also then do weiners, etc. and eat, eat, and eat.   My favorite ride was going north up into Itasca State Park.  This is where the Mississippi River starts it awesome winding trail to the Gulf, where it exits out at New Orleans!  A great State Park to visit both in the winter and especially the summer and fall months.  Only 25 miles from our home.  We are so lucky to be near such a beautiful state park.

Every New Years's we'd ride to an area resort lodge, eat out and ride home.  Some times it would be 20 degrees below zero!  Oh those were cold rides, but being dressed warm and with helmets and all our gear on, we'd stay warm.  Then we'd usually come home and play a few hours of cards.  The only thing bad about that, is depending on whose house we went too, some would then have to get dressed back up again to ride a few miles home.  I always liked it when we were already home.

The sleds sure are different now!  This is our 1973 model Polaris!  Now you'd call that a "vintage" sled!!!!
This is over at our daughter Leah's.  There sure is a difference in ride between the old and new.  Your ride on the newer sleds is a lot smoother than those of old!    Years ago you could tell the make of the snowmobile by the color - not so any more.  Gone are the white Polaris sleds, black of Artic Cat, red of Yamaha, yellow of Ski-Doo and green of the Johnsons.  There also were others back then, but now I can't identify any of the snowmobiles. It might be fun to go to a "Vintage Ride and Show" to see all the old sleds.  Maybe if we were more into snowmobiling now we'd still be able to identify the make of the newer ones, but we'll leave that and the riding to those younger than us!  I just have a lot of fun memories!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday Family Fotos!

Here is my good lookin husband when he was young and hot!  He must have been about a Jr. in high school here. so about 1961.  He said this was at the MN Jr. Livestock show at South St.Paul.   Love that flat top!

This next picture is in 1960 - (it was marked on the back).  Taken at MN Winter Show at Crookston.  His best friend Wayne  in the middle now lives at North Pole, Alaska.  We don't get to see him often, but when we do - it's a lot of laughs!  He was the one always getting into fights, and my nice guy husband, was the peace maker!    Some day we want to visit him and family in Alaska.
This was taken in the spring 1948, in Nebraska.  Their farm was near Ceresco, NE.  Hubby is the 3rd child, and he was 4 years old at that time.  His younger sister Kathy (age 2) didn't hold a pig, and still doesn't like them.  His older brother lives in Wisc. and older sister Jane lives in Minnesota, but winters a few months in Arizona (lucky girl). 

Looks like my husbands love for livestock started very young - and continues!  I'm going to Louisiana next week to spend a week at our daughters so I can babysit for Renee, and Steve can't come with because farrowing season started on Feb 1.  So he has to stay home and baby sit with his baby piggies coming now.

Check out this cute giveaway!

Noelle in England makes these darling little cottages and is having a giveaway!  Her site is
Aren't they the darling?  Go register for her giveaway!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Shoot Me! 5 of 52 Challenge

 Here I am with Odda the other night.  This is the day before she had her surgery. 

Now after surgery she has to stay in the house - just goes out to go potty, and play a little.  She hates it!  Her cone collar lasted  one day before it cracked completely.  She bumps into everything!  Poor girl.  So we duck taped it back together.  Her eye looks pretty good, still swollen somewhat.  Steve will be taking her to get her stitches out on the 12th.  She is suppose to wear the collar until that time!

She is so clutsy with this collar on.  Bumps into everything, and she always wants to be so close to everyone.  She wants to be rubbed, and she'll come up to you, rub against your leg, and then turn so her back is where she wants rubbing.  Her head with this cone is then usually caught up with the corner of the table, the computer keyboard, or the edge of the chair.  Then the cone snaps, and so far, when she's inside, it hasn't cracked.  The cold outside here doesn't help - the plastic snaps and breaks real easy when she bumps something.  Oh for good duck tape!  It fixes almost everything!

Here she is stealing Hooch's food (after eating all of hers).   I let her eat some, so I could get a picture.  I took her for a good walk Tuesday, and will do it again today.  Yesterday I could hardly move, so I was not moving very good.  Not even enought to take her for her walk.  I slept pretty good last night, so we'll go for a walk today.  Think I pulled a muscle in my left side low and couldn't even get up and walk upright for 2 days now.  We'll see how today goes.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Moma it's hot out!

Love this picture of our oldest daughter Leah!  What a gal - she is holding the umbrella over "Jack" (Little Texas Jack) after Amanda had ridden him in a class at the County Fair 4-H Horse show about 2 years ago.  I remember that day as so o o o hot for a Minnesota afternoon!   When you walk in our back door, you enter a catch all room that is my husbands office with trophy plaques all over one wall, and another wall has the three girls pictures with their horses.  I took this one off the wall to scan it.  Leah did not know I took this picture until she saw it printed.  I was sitting on the tail gate of their truck some feet away.