Five Special Days

Dad had to work and Mom was having minor surgery, so “Monkey” came to stay a few days at the lake with Grandma and Grandpa.

What would we do in the cooler fall weather?

It was too cold for a swim in the lake. Plus, the pools are still closed because of Covid. “Bella” our boat was already out of the marina for the season, but none of that stopped our outside fun.

He loved riding around the resort in the golf-cart checking ponds for duckies, and of course visiting the playgrounds.

Grandma did the climbing up with him getting to the big slides, but he learned to go down by himself. Grandpa usually did swing pushing, and on this one he took a turn in the adult seat.

Our fun wasn’t limited to outdoors.

New for this visit was dance parties. Monkey figured out which button on our old floor style stereo unit turned on the radio. There was lots of music (mostly Country), and dancing, lots of dancing. If we thought he wasn’t listening anymore and would turn it down or off, he would head over and adjust it back to his liking.

When not outside or dancing there was just good old on the floor playtime. Him and Grandpa did manage to get some pretty good TV watching snuggle time in too.

For five days our house was bustling with activity, cluttered with toys, but best of all, we were busy smiling and laughing. A joyful time for Grandma and Grandpa.

Although he can’t yet say it with words, we’re certain “Monkey” had fun too. 

This was his second overnight stay without his parents. The first time was only one night. He did great both times.

I can tell you Grandma and Grandpa enjoyed these four days with “Monkey” more than his parents did having four days without him. He’s a pretty easy little guy to miss.

These stay-overs bring back fond memories of when our other (older now) grandchildren used to come stay with us. Those are wonderful and cherished times too, even though we don’t have as many pictures from then. It was before cell phones with cameras.

I grew up knowing only 1 grandparent and she passed before I was a teen. I didn’t see her often, and I don’t remember ever visiting or staying with her without a parent.

Our children were very close with all their grandparents, but they have all long passed. We’ve always felt that their time together was special and so do they.

Todays technology makes documenting these memories with digital photos and videos so easy, and to me there’s no such thing as too many pictures.

Do you have Grandchildren that are near enough to spend time with them?

Do you have fond memories of spending time with your Grandparents?

Smiles Speak Words

Seeing the great-granddaughter’s smile while at her new table and chair set made building it rather than buying one worth the work.

Years ago we made the great-grandson a set, and we were told this little sweetie loves using his. It was time for us to make her a set of her own.

Having to build outside means we’re at the mercy of a short hectic season, and days with good weather to boot. We feel bad, but for these reasons the great-granddaughter is older than the great-grandson was when he got his set. 

We decided to make the sets different. Her’s is obviously taller because of her age. So, it was more practical to make the chairs a ladder back style for sturdiness. Plus, for her patiently waiting extra years, her table has a special flip up top for books or crafting supply storage.

Her set was also given unfinished. Being a girl her age, we felt she might have fun helping decide what colour it should be. Maybe even help with the process.

The great-grandson’s set was more a modern style and I finished it with black legs and clear table and chair tops.

Is It Even Possible

One of the best sleepers I know

Is this like wining a lottery, with many chasing the dream and few experiencing it?

Does anyone feel better physically when they first get out of bed. Do you wake with no pain or joint stiffness?

Never mind the usual back, neck, shoulder soreness, most days even my fingers, wrists and ankles hurt.

Could this be from an inappropriate mattress or just an aging thing?

I honestly don’t remember if sleep was comfortable in my younger days. Back then after a full day of chores, life and raising a family, sleep of any kind was all that mattered.

Mister and I searched and splurged when purchasing our latest mattress in hopes of chasing the elusive, “good night sleep”.

“Elusive” being the key word. I understand waking up sore if activities done the day before can be blamed, but I know that isn’t usually my cause.

Okay, after whining a bit and writing this brief post I’m leaning towards I have an age issue with a hint of mattress trouble.

  • Even waking sore beats the alternative though.
  • I’m grateful for every new day I experience.
  • I’m aware of how blessed I am that my problems (although overwhelming at times) are as small as they are when compared to the possibilities out there.

I’m still curious though if anybody wakes-up without some sort of mattress related soreness?

Is finding a perfect (no, comfortable) mattress even a realistic goal to strive for?

Note- This is my first post using the new formatting program wordpress has now. Please let me know if there are any issues viewing it, like overlapping text or things.

Noticeable Tan Lines

It’s pretty rare to see tan lines on me, especially ones as noticeable as right now.

I really, don’t like to be hot, so I usually hide in the shade not bask in the sun.

If you’ve noticed I haven’t posted lately it’s because for weeks now I’ve been spending hours and hours a day getting nicks, cuts, and slivers while working on my tan lines.

The feel good part is we finally got a big, to-do, checked off our list.

We removed the vertical deck boards from our under stair storage area and from around our back deck.

I actually like putting up vinyl siding, and I’ve worked with it a lot. Mister on the other hand doesn’t enjoy it, so this job was mostly mine after he got the frame work all up to parr. An arrangement that worked for both of us.

The areas aren’t very big so why did it take a few weeks to complete?

For days we could only work between severe rain storms. This meant bring the saw and equipment outside, then put it back inside, bring it out…

Then of course the daily severe heat warnings arrived. Which meant lots of water and shade breaks.

There was a ton of corners, angles, and trim work to do. Measure, cut, notch, and repeat over and over. Add my mild OCD, and this part took time.

Then of course regular life like eating, laundry, cutting lawns, cleaning house, etc. still used daylight too. It wasn’t all work every day straight either. There was some day trips for supplies and a few visits with family. We even got the boat cleaned, launched and got a few rides in.

It might have been interesting if I actually kept track of the hours I worked, but than maybe I don’t want to know that I work slower as I age.

I tried to think of a helpful hint or tip to share to make this post more interesting, but I couldn’t come up with anything.

If you don’t follow my facebook page I’ve also brought new life to our old table since my last post. The old oak look is now stained navy.


Do projects seem to take you longer to do than they use to?

Do you like to hang out in the sun or do you search for shade?


What The Heck


There really should be something a person can do to eliminate unimportant middle of the night phone calls or texts.

I don’t mean ones from family or friends. By all means, if they need me or us, call or text.

Wrong numbers don’t even terribly bother me, because I tell myself maybe that person is in need. Although, they should have their important people on speed dial.

I don’t want to stray from my point. I just want to take a minute to have a little rant.

It was shortly after 11:00pm last night when Mister and I went to bed.

At 12:22am. Mister turned his bedside light on and asked if I was going to answer the phone, which sleeps on my side table. I was in the mist of one of those sleeps where the single ding from the incoming message fit right into my dream.

Now, with my heart in my throat I sat up and reached for it. Middle of the night stuff is usually not good news.

All I could see without my glasses was that it was a text message. I keep a pair of drugstore readers handy, but of course this time they didn’t bring the words into focus.

So, off I went to retrieve my glasses from the living room where they spend their nights. Mister patiently waited to find out what was up, because he also leaves his prescription glasses in the living room so even though he tried he couldn’t read the screen either.

The text was a notification from the automated service our home real estate company uses to book showings. Did we really need to know and confirm this appointment at 12:30am., a day and a half before the requested showing.

My biggest issue is once I’m woken, I’m awake and up. So it was very early coffee and cookies for me this morning. I did manage a hour or so nap on the couch before the sun came up. Mister even had had trouble falling back to sleep. He had to sit in his recliner for a bit before he headed back to bed.

Why oh why would these automated pre-recorded reminders or notifications some businesses use be scheduled for the middle of the night?

So there’s my rant. You can bet I will be discussing this with our listing agent.

No matter where I am, I purposely take the phone with me to bed every night, incase there’s an emergency on our end or with family or friends.

I know there’s way more pressing issues in the world today, but what else was I to do in the wee hours of the morning besides write. I did play some computer games first.

How do you feel about getting woken up in the middle of the night?

Can you easily fall back asleep?

Cactus In Alberta


Did you know Cactus grow wild in southern Alberta, Canada?

Prickly Pear cacti have actually been know to grow as far north in the province as the Peace River area.

In central Alberta, they have grown in our family’s flower beds for over 30 years.

The above picture is one of our beds of cacti here at the lake which had a building for shelter during the 2014 damaging hail storm. It has its first of many blossoms for this season.

Below is a before and after picture of a different flower bed that needed love this year. It use to be crammed full of large cacti like the other bed. Many of the plant’s in this one didn’t survive that hail storm a few years ago. The ones that did have been fighting their way back. Recent wet weather though is washing away the soil and the landscape ties trap rainfall leaving them often living in a water puddle. I can’t even keep up weeding the growing moss and wet soil grass.

It was a dreaded chore, but we removed all the cacti, dug out the grass and moss, filled the bed with 8-10 inches of sand, then separated and replanted the cacti.

I hope they appreciate the work and flourish once again.

Late fall these cactus will start to shrieval and lay over, ready to be covered with snow. Each spring they bounce back. As in the first picture, this variety gets large yellow blossoms in June or early July, depending on the spring’s warmth. Ours are later then usual this year.

Do you like unusual bedding plants?

Can you grow cactus outside in your area?

If you are wondering, how I weed these cactus beds, I use long handle pliers or a fish hook remover.

What Holds Us Back

Does anyone remember the above saying?

I heard it thousands of times growing up.

Do you ever wish you could do something? Anything in our control qualifies for this question. Things like, learn a new hobby, language or to cook, play an instrument, game, sport, or even practical things like save money.

I’m certain everyone at some point has said, “I’d love to be able to…”

What sometimes keeps us from trying these things?

Is it a confidence issue?

Is it not liking change?

Is it as simple as, we don’t like to risk failure?

Are the wishful activities that dance in our heads not worth extra time, effort and maybe risking not doing them perfect at first or ever?

After all wouldn’t “failure” be not trying them at all?

Say, if after a month you can only count to ten in the new language you’ve been studying, that should still be seen as success, right?

Even the “I wish I could…” which involves changing a current habit should be considered here.

What if after a week you’ve only saved 50 cents a day, that’s still saving, right? Plus, the following weeks goal could be simply increase to another reachable amount.

It’s common to get enthused by success, and discouraged by defeat. So, lets not make our goals for something new or habit changing difficult to reach.

Remember, even the tiniest accomplishment or change can help you reach the big goal.

Take someone whose “I wish” is to have a more organized house. Tackling it in small areas it’s not as overwhelming.

This makes me think of something I was once told years ago and I truly believe. “A messy, unorganized living space reflects what’s going on in your life.” Often physically cleaning up the clutter will help settle inner anxiety.

We should give ourselves easy goals to achieve, approach things in steps, and maybe lighten up a bit on our expectations.

Here’s something I’ve often wondered. When someone says they can’t do something for example cook, do they really mean “can’t” or is it they “don’t want to try”?

As adults we need to study the young. How do they learn to walk? Do they give up after the first fall? No, they do it in stages over time and with lots of effort. They sit, then stand, then move on to taking steps.

After spending a couple days with “Monkey” (our little grandson) it occurred to me that we are born with a tremendous amount of try in us. Anything new Monkey comes across that he wants to do he is persistent until he succeeds.

Perhaps in this time of Covid-19 you took a chance to try something that has been a wishful thought, or perhaps you tackled changing a habit.

Why as we age do we let the determination and persistence we are born with slip away?


Multi-purpose Furniture


Grandma and Grandpa’s latest building project will keep “Monkey” safe while helping in the kitchen. Now that he tried it out and enjoys it, we’ll tweak a couple things and paint it.

Items that have dual or multi purposes are necessary when living in a small space. Foot stools and end tables with storage, hide-a-bed, murphy bed, all those regular type things.

We’ve made some of our own creations when we can’t buy what we need, or if we can’t find the right size piece.

In my perfect world, I would be working with wood nearly every day because it’s my favourite hobby.

This latest piece might look confusing or overbuilt, but it transforms for four different uses.

In the top picture is it as a aid for my dish washing and baking helper. To grow with him it has four height adjustments.

The picture below it’s an adjustable highchair.


It also converts into an extra adult chair for at our table.

Plus, I can adjust it for a step stool when needing to access our high cabinets.

There’s building directions for lots of different styles of the four things mentioned  above on Pinterest, but I couldn’t find a multi purpose one. So, with a idea in my head, Mister and I started building this figuring out the arm system as we went.

Do you remember being little and standing on something so you could help in the kitchen?

Do you enjoy making things of any kind?

Change or Maintain?


Our leaves and flowers seem to be slow appearing this spring. Definitely later than last year, but not really unusually late. Maybe the social distancing and isolation just has a person anxious to see change.

We’ve had about a week now of cooler and windier weather than normal, so I’m sure once the warm sun returns things will pop.

How are things growing where you are?

Yard-work is not my favourite pastime. Let me rephrase that, yard maintenance is not my favourite thing to do. If we were building or changing something outside I’d be all in, but I have to force myself to do the weekly weeding.

If it was up to me there would be some flowerbed and rock-garden changes done this year, but Mister has the “why change things” attitude. He says why do major projects when it’s up for sale, which is reasonable. It’s just with what’s going on in the world we also doubt it will sell this year. Money spent on different landscaping wouldn’t be a recoupable expense.

We had this cottage built fourteen years ago, and have lived here full time since 2009 with little to no major changes.

I’m feeling a real need to change something inside or out.

Normally, painting a interior room would solve this restlessness and would have been a winter project. Edging around 22 windows, 6 doorways, and tall vaulted ceilings made me think it might be more than this aged body should tackle though. I know I can do it I have in the past. I also remember how much work it was. Before you think it, no, having someone else do it does not satisfy my need to change something.

I’m sure professionals out there will say I have some big underlying issues with needing change, but really I’m just tired of seeing the same old same old.

Do you like change? 

I’ve mentioned before that woodworking is one of my favourite hobbies. Not having a garage though means it’s done in warmer weather outside. I spend the snowy winter months planning projects, and I’m chomping at the bit to get started on them.

I’m certain that’s why spring yard work irritates me, it has to be done before projects get started.

So there’s my dilemma, I feel stuck wanting to change something or at least get started on some outside projects. Hurry up and warm up weather, quit with showers and blustery winds.

Do you like to rearrange furniture, paint rooms, change or add landscaping?

Are you content with material things staying a certain way for long periods?

What About After?


Does anyone else have these thoughts?

Are you ever going to be able to relax while in a crowd, or even just shopping or dinning out again?

Knowing this virus is still out there, how fast it can spread, or that this could happen again with a different virus, just how much paranoia is healthy?

Will flights, cruises or even mass gatherings have any appeal to you?

I’m hoping Mister and I can find a comfortable middle ground. I do think it’s going to take some time though.

Air travel won’t be in our near future, but to be fair, Mister has never enjoyed airports. We were checking out cruises when this all started, but they aren’t high on our priority list anymore either.

Respecting a strangers personal space anywhere we are will be our new habit.

Not to the point of if I’m in an elevator and a crowd enters I’ll flip out, at least I hope I won’t, but my eyes may widen if someone in there starts coughing or sneezing.

Will this isolation experience forever change your habits?

We’re still hanging in here, hope you are too.