Archive for the ‘Life in General’ Category

To Blog Again…

June 21, 2020

Wow, what an absolutely beautiful morning. It’s 8:10 a.m., 71°, sunny, and just perfect to enjoy my deck while drinking my morning coffee. I have been so busy lately that I have not had time to do daily general life blogs nor have I had time to read things I want to read. Well, I think some of that is going to happen today!

Wait…my birdfeeder is empty. Let me got help the birds. It’s fun to sit here and watch how many birds come back and forth to the feeders. Ok, done. Now we’ll see how long until a little birdy notices there is food once again.

Ok….my weekend ended up being very busy. I never saw a bird at the feeder but it is almost empty again so obviously someone noticed it was full.

Let’s see recap the weekend…

Saturday
Farmers Market and then brought Rowan home with us. Of course, it was so HOT we all needed something to cool us off in order to even walk home. So, if you walk by Coney’s and Swirls, you should at least stop for something. Some of us got ice cream and some had slushes. Nice and refreshing.  We got home and had leftovers for lunch. A brief nap and then to meet Bridget and her mom at the campground to look things over and start setting up for the party on Tuesday to celebrate Grace and Bridget’s graduation from Hillsdale Academy.

Once we were done there we headed to Bankers to swim in Grandma Shirley and Grandpa Paul’s pool. The water was so nice and relaxing. Swam some laps and played with the kids. I am so impressed with how well Rowan is swimming. She is a little fish! So fun to watch her. Then, Grace and Olivia were working with her on diving. She is doing a GREAT job and can almost dive off the board and make it to the end of the pool without coming up for air! That’s a tough one when you are only 8! She’s doing awesome!

Once we were done swimming and laying in the sun to dry off, we headed to Walmart to pick up a few things and then home for the evening. We were all so tired. Ended up watching the moving Casper. What a great, fun movie! Then we all headed to bed.

Sunday ended up being extremely busy too! Got up did a few things, then the girls and I headed to Jackson Sam’s Club. Bought stuff for the graduation party and for us at home. Then, we met Julia at Meijer and stood outside and talked with her for a bit. Always so great to see my nieces! No matter how short the visits are they are still great! Then, into Meijer to buy a few final items. Then headed home. We got close to Spring Arbor and decided to stop by and visit with my friend Lisa. It is always good to visit with her and her family. We, of course, stayed too long but it was great to visit.

Once home unloaded the car, put groceries away, ate some leftovers, packed up stuff for the grad party into the car and then left again. We first stopped at the St. Anthony’s cemetery to visit Grandpa Don for Father’s Day. Still so hard to believe he is gone. We miss him daily.

Then to the campground to unload stuff into the rec room. Grace and Bridget will go out tomorrow and start setting stuff up and decorating.

Once finished, went to Dollar Tree to pick up a few more items. Then to Litchfield where we stopped at Mt. Hope Cemetery to visit my dad, “just Grandpa”. So hard to believe it has been almost seven years. We miss him so very much!

Then, stopped to visit Grandma. Rowan was over visiting so we took her with us and then dropped her at her house. We went in for a short visit to talk and then we were on our way home.

Ordered Cavoni’s on the way home, stopped when we got to town to pick them up and took them home for dinner. It was almost 8 by this time so we were definitely hungry!

Then, trying to work on some campaign items. Looked over the workout for tomorrow.
We read the post from the CrossFit gym that there will be no more Zoom as they prepare to open the gym! How exciting but it is a bit sad for Grace and me since I was doing so well.
Grace and I read over the workout and decided what we would do for tomorrow. We will still get up at 5:30 and do our workout we’ll see how it goes.

So, another weekend has gone as fast as it arrived. See you tomorrow and hope everyone had a great weekend!

 

Friday – A Day off

June 5, 2020

Ok, so I decided to take today off from work. Now, I hope I can actually not go there! I really have a number of things I should get done…Grace’s graduation announcement, party plans, guest list, pay some bills, work on Brendan’s website and facebook pages, call about pools (pool company, city ordinance, permit, excavating company, etc.), figure out what to do about camper, and I REALLY want to spend a big chunk of time updating my blog and catching up all the posts I really wanted in here – especially this past week, we were so busy and I didn’t have time to put stuff in here.

Guess I better go shower so I can get started!

 

Ok, so nothing done yet. Well, I guess I can’t totally say that. I did take care of some emails that needed to be responded to, I added items to the grocery list, I talked to Rowan on the phone (invited her to come over today but she wants to go with her mom so she can stop at a store in Angola), looked up a few things I need to order on Amazon, went for a 1.74-mile walk and now I need some coffee and toast.

As I sat down to look up something, I decided to check Facebook and saw an article about Whitmer marching with the protesters and how she is breaking her own order about even in groups outdoors you need to social distance. She definitely was not by the photos that have been shared. So, of course, I had to look to see when we are going to hear from her next – yep, this morning at 11. Now I have anxiety wondering what she will do to us now.

Now I am heading to work as I forgot to do something that is due today. Hopefully, I won’t be gone too long.

Oh my heavens, as of June 15th it will be legal for us to get our hair cut again. Amazing! Now for the gyms to open! Maybe soon! It sounded like everything would be open before July 4th. We can only hope.

So, it is really now June 15th and I just noticed that I never finished this post! Have no idea what happened the rest of that day, but do recall it was busy but didn’t get half the list done.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Final School Exchange Day & Senior Night

May 26, 2020

Today was the final exchange of student items with families. It was a hot and busy day! Collecting homework and textbooks, what a job! Didn’t quite get everything sorted but will finish it in the morning. I have to say though, we have some great families! I appreciate your thoughtfulness. I miss all of your children!

Didn’t get home from work until almost 6:00 p.m. I was definitely tired and my legs were sore. On my feet carrying in textbooks and sorting the books made for a long day. But hey, at least I do CrossFit…I could handle those large piles of textbooks!

Olivia made the dinner (parmesan chicken over angel hair pasta) so it was ready when I got home. My mom came down and ate with us. We then sat and watched the Hillsdale Academy Senior Night Class of 2020 on Facebook Live. It was really nice but I am sorry I am not a fan of a virtual event that we should have been able to do live. I cried throughout the event – cried because these kids are special and I’m going to miss them, cried because I’m proud of these kids…especially mine, cried because we should not have to be doing this event like this, cried because these kids have had to miss out on so much this year, cried because I know this special group of kids is going to do some really great things in life and I can’t wait to see that! I am just a very emotional Senior mom right now wanting my child to have what her siblings had but at the same time trying to hold it together to be the tough mom and making sure she knows that she is going to be stronger because of all she has to deal with now. I guess that sort-of means I will be stronger too??

No extra walk for me tonight. Between Senior Night and my legs just being sore, I figured I had done enough. Total miles walked today…5.9 miles. (No wonder my legs hurt. Guess I better go take some ibuprofen and go to bed so I can get up early for CrossFit.)

Good Night All.

Another Weekend….Quarantined

May 25, 2020

What a busy, long weekend it turned out to be. The weather was finally really beautiful!

IMG_9550 (1)

Got up on Saturday and spent time chatting with Rowan. It’s always fun the way we take pictures of each other and all the filters she finds to play around with. Always a fun way to start the day.

Today, Grace and I worked on things while enjoying the deck. We took some boxes of “stuff” outside for Grace to sort through to locate certificates and school photos. I worked on finishing up Brendan’s facebook page. Brendan is running for Hillsdale County District Judge so Victoria and I are working on social media, website, etc.

IMG_9556 (1)

Victoria called so I decided to go for my walk so we could talk without others listening to us 🙂 I ended up walking up West Street to where the bike trail starts on the left. I don’t recall ever really going that way before. It crosses Fayette and then it goes down to the cemetery and behind the recycle place. It was actually a really nice walk. Total miles for this walk 2.83.

I finished up Brendan’s facebook page and published it. It was fun to watch the numbers of people the page was reaching. It was also fun to watch how many people each individual post was reaching.

IMG_9684

 

After we finally ate dinner, the kids and I went for a brief walk.

Total miles for Saturday…4.8.

 

IMG_9572

Sunday I walked about a mile (forgot to turn on my app) while talking to my sister. Then I sat on the deck enjoying the beautiful sun and relaxing atmosphere of my deck. Finally, Grace, Olivia, and I fixed three of the deck chairs. They needed extra webbing added to them. We did a great job on them and they turned out good!

We then got ready to go to a graduation party. It was so nice going to the party. People were very mindful of one another but we definitely did hug people. It was SO GOOD to see people!! It was especially great to see the kids and how happy they were being with one another. It was really great! Total of 2.6 miles walked today.

IMG_9682

 

Monday, Memorial Day. Got up, walked 1.51 miles and then talked to Rowan. Wow, the filter she used today, I’ve never seen anyone be a toaster before…

IMG_9575

Moved the houseplants out to the deck for the summer. I will have to take photo tomorrow so you can see it. It looks so cool out there in the summer. Then we got around and left to meet family at the lake. So much fun to see everyone and enjoy the outdoors and each others company. The kids had a lot of fun.

IMG_9659

Stayed out there most of the day, came home so the girls could change clothes. Then we ran to Litchfield to the cemetery and to stop and see the new trampoline at Rowan’s house.

A long busy day but it was so nice to be with people. Hope everyone has a great week.

Almost forgot…total walking miles today…3.5.

Just Another Friday

May 22, 2020

What a way to start the day…Mrs. Brown (the Kindergarten teacher) put together a video for her students about the year. In the video she inserted video clips of each student at home saying what they miss about school, telling their friends they miss them and will see them next year. It totally made me cry. I had tears just streaming down my face.
Why, you ask? Well, besides the fact that I am a mother and cry over everything, I am also so extremely emotional these days due to the situation in which we are forced to live, missing all of the students at Hillsdale Academy, and seeing the photos within this video thinking about each and every student that is in this building all year and their personalities and how they contribute to our Academy family, it’s just sad. Great job Mrs. Brown. I’m sure your families will enjoy it! Now to stop crying and get on with work.

Have to say one of the fun things today….receiving a few photos of pancake breakfasts at home as well as happy to be done with school!

Got a number of things done and then decided to head out early. Hopeful that I can go home and get a few things accomplished – like do things for Grace’s graduation (create an announcement, locate certificates/awards, sort photos, etc.).

Went home finished a couple of things for work. Then I took a nap, I was exhausted. I thought I would sleep for like 15 minutes but I ended up sleeping almost 2 hours! What! Now I have gotten nothing done.

IMG_9549

Helped Olivia mix up the pizza dough and then I went for a walk while talking with my friend Lisa. She is always great to talk to as we can always totally just be ourselves. Got home from my 1.97 mile walk and sat on the deck for a few minutes. Saw my neighbor at her backdoor and went and talked for a couple of minutes until the girls came to tell me it was time for dinner.

Went and ate dinner, took some leftovers back over to the neighbor and stayed and visited for awhile. We hadn’t been there in at least 6 weeks. It was nice to try to get back to a normal of some kind.  While we were there, Rowan called a number of times. So, when we got home, I called her back. She just wanted to talk a little. Then, I asked if her mom was there and I talked to Torrie for a bit. As we were talking, she told me the Governor had just extended the stay at home until June 12. What??!!!! This is beyond ridiculous. As I said yesterday, I am so totally confused. We can open up all these other things but stay home. We can gather with no more than 10 people but stay home. Isn’t it time to get the economy going, have those at higher risk stay home and if they choose not to that is now their choice, try to move on with life but have people use some common sense?

I am so sad and depressed I feel like I am just holding back so much. I feel like I want to dig a hole, crawl in it and just cry. I know the risks but at this point, I need some freedom. I don’t even feel like I live in America any more – no freedom to assemble, no freedom of religion, living in a state controlled by one person (our whole checks and balances system is gone), people are afraid of each other, people are afraid to live, people are locked up in nursing homes and not being able to have their loved ones with them, what has happened to our society?

Now I am sad and depressed for my daughter, Grace. How in the world will she ever graduate? How will we really be able to ever celebrate her accomplishments? I’m no longer holding out hope of any type of in-person graduation. I think I have just resigned myself to the fact that she will be handed her diploma in some bizarre fashion and it will be meaningless. No real ceremony to say how proud we are of these kids, what a great job they have done, to let others share in that celebration. I guess perhaps a drive-by and grab your diploma, wow, that’s special.

I guess this is more than enough. And, yes, I know, there are plenty of people who have negative thoughts about all I have just said, but as I have said in my disclaimer, be respectful, you don’t have to agree with me, but these are MY thoughts and feelings – not yours!

Have a good evening and hope everyone can find some way to celebrate Memorial Day. Oh wait, I’m pretty sure the great Governor said… “in the coming days I will let Michiganders know how they can celebrate Memorial Day.”

Wow, I can hardly wait…

 

 

Academy Families & Senior Surprises

May 18, 2020

The nice thing about Mondays is that we do get to see families today during the homework exchange! I don’t see as many as Pam does but I do get to see some and it sure is great!

Today was special as we had a Senior surprise…yard signs lining the drive. It looks so nice! The Seniors usually come pick up their own work and they did have a gift to pick up from a teacher today as well, so they were all pretty happy when they saw the signs!

So glad we could do a little something for them during this very strange time of their lives. Someday they will graduate, but the question remains…when?

I miss the kids, so weird to work at a school with no students in the building. The building is usually humming with activity – from early morning until late into the evening. Definitely miss it.

IMG_9071

 

It rained most of the day so this evening I didn’t walk since it was raining. Therefore, talking to Victoria and then somehow was put into a video chat, I decided I should ride the exercise bike for awhile. Rode for 15:00 minutes. Guess that was pretty good.

Total miles walked today (thanks to the homework exchange) 5.1.

Nothing else exciting to share. Guess I’ll catch you all tomorrow.

 

Sunday…

May 17, 2020

IMG_9053

Got up in time to do a quick walk before it rained. Only, walked 0.65 miles but got home right before it rained.

IMG_9037 Then I made myself breakfast (cheesy eggs with ham) with some coffee. Just as I finished I heard from my friend, Rowan. My good morning call, but I told her I wondered what had happened to her since she missed our walk this morning.

Decided today I needed to work on some things to get ready for graduation. Yes, someday we will have a graduation for Grace and we will have a party. Her classmates will also really graduate someday. Therefore, we worked on the rest of the pictures we needed for Grace, worked on gifts for the graduates, found a few things to use at Grace’s party. Felt good to get a little bit of an actual start. Not nearly as far as I was with the other kids at this point, but at least we have started.

Nothing else too exciting today. We had Grandma come down and have dinner with us. Dinner included sweet corn, which was really tasty and Grace and I decided to try the facebook instructions we recently saw for cooking the corn – leaving it in the husks and cooking in the oven for 25-30 minutes. Here’s what happened…

After dinner consisted of a game of Apples to Apples between Grandma, Grace, Olivia and myself. I don’t think I have ever played this game. Must have been good though as I won 🙂

Finished the evening with a dish of sherbet. Nice day but only ended up walking 2.2 miles today. As my kids always say, you really should have one day where you sort of rest.

 

Just a Saturday

May 16, 2020

Couldn’t it have been raining today? Would have loved getting up to terrible storms. However, the weather was actually really good — yes, it was perfect weather for track. The Regional track meet should have been today and it was actually good weather for it.

IMG_9011

 

Talked to Rowan first thing this morning while she was at the Spa.

 

IMG_9014  I then went for a walk with my mom. She was just getting up as Rowan was heading to her house for a little bit. We walked 1.67 miles. Got home finished up talking to them and then ate breakfast and ran to the store to pick up medication. IT was really good!

Spent the day working outside, planting all the flowers we had purchased from he Academy plant sale. Moved stuff around the desk, added more solar lights to some of the pots. I really should take some photos now that my planters all have flowers in them!!

Finished the evening with a late dinner compliments of Noah – chicken stir fry. Very good dinner tonight!

Total miles walked today 3.8.

 

Just A Simple Thursday

May 14, 2020

IMG_8713

How nice to see these little babies on the way into work this morning. They heard me coming so they started running fast! So funny to watch them. One little guy even fell over he was trying to run so fast. They are so cute but oh what a mess they make all over the sidewalk!

Just another day of school with no students. Worked on a number of projects, sent information about classical schools to a number of people across the country. It is so interesting right now all of these people who would love to have Hillsdale Academy nearby so their children could attend or would love if we offered an online homeschool program.

IMG_8722After work talked to Oliver, I mean, Victoria. We did watch Oliver playing with a milk jug. Funny how much fun he was having with the thing! 

I also did a messenger video call
with Rowan.

IMG_8720

IMG_8724

 

Noah made dinner….Ramen…a recipe he got from a friend. Basically Ramen noodles with a bunch of stuff in it. He had never made it before but it turned out really good.

Grace and I then went for a 2.59 mile walk. Walked from home to the Academy for me to pick up a paper I left at work. It was really nice out walking.

Kids are playing a game, I’m writing and then working on a new facebook page for my brother’s run for District Judge. Talk to you again tomorrow.

 

 

Day 54

May 8, 2020

The smell of a gym floor being refinished stinks and stirs up all kinds of thoughts. Typically the smell of floor refinishing means students will be back in school soon, sports seasons will be starting, and students will be playing in there whenever possible. Reality check…not allowed to have students in the building, no-one is allowed to be playing in a gym, there are no sports…so yes this stinks all of this and definitely the smell!!

Colts will survive and our teams will be in that gym soon working hard and being the fierce competitors they are. I can’t wait!

The governor’s plan for the state of Michigan was revealed….we will be locked up forever…just saying…

MI plan

Worked half the day at home. Did get quite a bit done which always feels good. Then, the girls had me go to the track with them. Actually, we left at the same time but I got there after them. They drove and I walked 🙂 Took only 15 minutes to get there. Such a sad time walking on the track…my daughters shouldn’t be practicing by themselves, the track should be filled with athletes and tomorrow should be Regionals…there should be lots already happening tonight in preparation for tomorrow. But we are the Colts and we will get through this…tougher and stronger than ever. Just sad for my daughter, Grace missing her Senior year of Track…she was so looking forward to it and it was going to be her year! We were ready for all kinds of good things to happen for her. Guess her work now will help prepare her for a great 1st year of college track.

After we got home, took some pictures of Grace so everyone will know where she has decided to go to college…

IMG_8560

Dinner time, chicken and rice, compliments of Olivia. During dinner, Rowan called and we were able to visit with her, Grandma and little Mark in North Carolina. So fun to have video chat capabilities.

Finishing the day with a phone call with my friend Lisa (perhaps you need to start texting me in the mornings to see what kind of walking I’ve already done:) ), writing and baking a cherry crisp…’cause after all, who wouldn’t love to eat a cherry crisp on day 54 of quarantine….and you know, I think a nice Michigan Cherry wine cooler will go nicely with this 🙂

My walking map didn’t look too bad today…we’ll see what tomorrow brings.

Quarantine Sadness…

May 7, 2020

Today ended up being so sad and depressing. Another 13 days added to the Stay at Home quarantine. I understand the seriousness of this disease but at some point we have to start going back into society.

I am so very, very, sad for the Class of 2020. Since I have a Senior it makes it that much more depressing. We are so proud of her accomplishments and the hardwork she has put in to her studies and her sports. I’m just sad that we will not be celebrating Grace’s graduation from high school like we did her older siblings. No graduation at the end of the month and no party. We’ll just have to come up with something to still try to make this special until we can somehow, someday watch her graduate.

Came home from work and felt so bummed out that I didn’t even want to walk. Olivia told me I had to go because walking is good when you are sad and depressed. So off I went, Victoria and Oliver ended up with me today for the 2.3 mile walk. I was really trying to make a cooler map, but somehow it is still pretty rectangular….

Home just in time for dinner, hamburger gravy on noodles. Good job Grace dinner was great.

Video messenger with Rowan. She was eating her dinner. Talked about her day and then she had to go. Love how she calls, talks and then just has to go!

No one felt like doing much so watching a season of Taskmaster seemed to add a bit of humor for the day.

Hope to find some positives out of tomorrow.

Awesome Day

May 7, 2020

Happy Birthday to my bestest friend ever, Valery Griffiths! We have known each other since we were in the first grade. We have had our share of ups and downs but the ups and all the fun sure have outweighed the downs. So many memories come to mind when I think about us — high school, college years, marriages, babies, too many to even count. I am so lucky to have you as such a great friend! No matter how long between our talks these days, I know you are always there for me! Love you much and hope you had a fabulous day!!

Valery and I go way back as you see from above. So, of course, I thought of her as soon as I got up this morning. Hope she had a wonderful day.

Nothing too exciting through the day. Well, we did have a staff meeting! Wednesdays are fun because we get to see everyone. We all show up to the meeting wherever we might be…work, home, kitchen, living room, den…and today it was quite odd as everyone was either wearing red or had something red with them. Odd…oh wait…that’s Mr. Roberts favorite color (NOT). It has been great to still be able to have fun even if we can’t be together.

After work, I went on my daily walk. Today I talked to Julia (one of my nieces) while I walked 2.03 miles. I love being able to talk with my nieces and nephews whenever I feel like it. I have always loved being an Aunt and it is very special to me that they will take the time to still talk to me even as they grow older.

Check out the cool map Julia and I made on our walk.

Dinner was chicken alfredo made by Grace. Great job Grace! It was delicious and I even have some for lunch tomorrow.

After dinner, the girls decided I should go to the track with them. Grace was working on shot put and Olivia was going to ride her bike. I guess I’m walking. So, I called my mom and we chatted while I was walking. Had to go when Grace decided I needed to take some video of her throwing the shot-put. Oh, and then even I got a turn. My first throw of the season was NOT very good. But this old lady couldn’t even remember how I was supposed to do it!!

We then headed for home and just as I got home, I got to talk to another one of my nieces, Rowan. She called and chatted about her day, the money she is saving to buy more horses or even a cow, then she was telling me about the Mother’s Day art project she was making. She sent me a photo so I could see what she was doing. It was so cute. Then she said, “did you look at the other one?” what other one? oh I see it, there is another photo….

IMG_8526

…my heart melted. She is so sweet. Did I tell that I really love being an Aunt and I love my nieces and nephews? What an awesome way to finish the day.