Tuesday, January 31, 2012

*The Joy of winter*****

Most of the time I spend winter wrapped up in a quilt, clutching a cup of hot tea with a warm furry kitty on my lap. But today I was shocked by 56 degree weather. I can't remember a time I was able to wear sandals and no coat driving to work in January! What a wonderful change from the normal -20 degrees with a wind chill of -20 making it "feel like" -40 below zero... brrrrr...

I do love winter, the frosty air makes hot chocolate just taste better. The cold toes makes warm quilts feel better. It gives me time to catch up on missed movies, books I want to read and garden catalogs to plan future orders.

The 2011/2012 winter has been quite mild here. Scares me to think of what might be in store for us in the up coming months.
Back in 1967 the Tribune said "The Blizzard of '67 proved the wisdom behind the Chicago saying "If you don't like the weather, just wait a minute." Only two days before, the temperature had reached a record 65 degrees." Sounds a little too familiar for me. In 1967 I was 10 and it was a great adventure being a carefree child but now that I am the adult it has quite a different spin on the whole picture.
Figaro exploring
Sarge exploring

The kitties always like to walk around for a couple minutes before their toes get cold. I think if they could wear boots they would stay out much longer with their warm winter fur coats.

I am sure there is still snow in store for us, probably more than we care to think about.
But I will relish my warm furry friends, delicious cup of tea and drift off for a nap thinking about the warm summer days to come.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

***The Joy of 2011***

The holidays bring close to the year and a time to remember all the changes that occurred in the past 12 months.
This year I was given wonderful opportunities that have made a difference in my life.

Each and every day I am thankful that I am alive, to breathe another breath, see the beauty in the day.

My daughter moved back to Illinois so we have been able to spend our holidays together.
She brought the love of her life with her, Travis, that I finally got to meet.
Having them in my life has given me great joy, I thank them for being a part of my life.
Travis & Felix in his Christmas outfit
Having Face Book gave me the opportunity to be reunited with several new and old friends from my past. Being able to see how the years have shaped their lives has been very interesting.

NIU offers free motorcycle riding classes. I took their basic riding class and finally got to learn how to ride a motorcycle!! It has always been one of those things I always wanted to do but never got around to  taking the time to do it.
Work has given me an opportunity to change my position, my hours and my location. It was like getting a new job with out the interview! Now I have new faces, new desk and new surroundings.The area of our building is located in a beautiful park like location. The walking path around the pond offers a nice break from the computor in any season.

It has been a great year and I am looking forward to many more.
Thank you all for sharing your lives with me, looking forward to seeing you next year!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

- The Joy of Giving -

Thanksgiving reminds us to give thanks for the things we have in our lives and to strive for peace and posterity.
People give thanks and share their bounty in many different ways.
Some drop money in the Salvation Army bucket, donate canned goods, purchase toys, coats, hats, mittens, or simply share time with those who need help. We don't need money to shovel a sidewalk for an elderly person, pick up their mail from the mailbox,  or watch a single parents child so they can have time for themselves.
It's all in the spirit of sharing our time and good fortune with those who may be less fortunate.

I always seem to find less and less time to be able do the things for others.
I blame growing older! It just seems to take me more time to do things.
So I found something I could do that would take no additional time, donate my hair!
It takes about 5 years for me to grow out a nice braid to donate to Locks of Love.
These are pictures of my last donation in 2006.

I kept it short for 3 years until 2009 but 

I am growing it out for my next donation with a few more gray hairs!!
I am thankful to have an abundance of healthy hair that also grows so fast.

Please consider sharing yours if you are able too, it is a small thing to do but means so much to those who need it.

William Bradford, in Of Plymouth Plantation:
Thus they found the Lord to be with them in all their ways, and to bless their outgoings and incomings, for which let His holy name have the praise forever, to all posterity.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

+The Joy of Halloween+

Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder's fork, and blind-worm's sting,
Lizard's leg, and owlet's wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.

- -William Shakespeare (a quote from "Macbeth")

Ghosts, goblins, witches, zombies, spiders, vampires
all come out for Halloween along with treats and tricks.
A wonderful time to be some thing or someone else,
dress outrageous, indulge our deepest costume fantasy
and embrace true creativity.
Costumes can be easy and no cost.
There are no expectations, no disappointments, family arguments,
overspending or cleaning frenzy's as with other occasions.
The day gives everyone a chance to express themselves without being
right or wrong. It's just plain fun, like life, its what you make it to be.




 everyone loves to have fun
                          and get together.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

~ The Joy of Fall ~

The dearest hands that clasp our hands,   
Their presence may be o’er;
The dearest voice that meets our ear,
That tone may come no more!
Youth fades; and then, the joys of youth,
Which once refresh’d our mind,
Shall come — as, on those sighing woods,
The chilling autumn wind.

   from The Autumn
          by Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1833)
  Summer fades to fall, here in the Midwest we look forward to the relief from the hot summer days and invite the cool crisp starry nights. Any long time resident will agree that fall is the best season.
The change of season gives pause to remember those friends and family who we shared lives with.
                            Like beautiful summer flowers, we hold their memories in our hearts.

Fall gives us a bounty of things to see, eat, smell, and do.
                                                             There are the wonderful festivals that are free to see!

St. Charles Scarecrow Festival

Great decorations that are just an imagination away,

and beautiful flowers are still in bloom!


                                             But best of all is the spectacular show from mother nature!!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

** The Joy of children **

With most people, once you become an adult you strive for self/family/work balance.
Trying to keep an even keel proves to be difficult while juggling schedules with loved ones, meeting financial responsibilities, pleasing employers, and finding time to do the things you love. The myriad of other time absorbing obstacles seems to melt the years away. One day you wake up and find yourself at a much later time in life!
But there is one thing that any parent will agree on is the joy of raising a child.
There are frustrating, difficult, painful times that go with the happy, fulfilling joyous times.

We have times when we seem to have abundant resources to make our lives meaningful and fun for our children.

Then there are times when we just have to make due with what is available to us.

                               There are always the milestone celebrations we remember.
1st birthday!!

Graduation Day!!

Sometimes we need to call upon family members to help us with our tasks so we can have more time together.

The seasons seem to fly by so fast as they grow up.

We watch them discover new things.


 We remember some of the silly things they did.

We watch them grow into beautiful people.
 Cherish each and every day you have with your children, they only are young once. They grow up fast!!  Love you Cassandra, my daughter, my friend :)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Life is a journey, some times short, some times long, we never know how much time we have.
Today I started a blog to reflect on my journey and the joy of living.