Monday, January 31, 2005

Almost There......

  Going on this cruise will be the first time I am spending my birthday without my husband and children in 18 years. It's a celebration for me, for surviving myself and my younger years and not self-destructing like my Father before me. The men on my Father's side are split down the middle between Saints and Sinners. My father lived a hard fast life and it cost him his life at 41, I am the last of his children to out live him, His goal was to outlive he Father and he did, his Father died at 31 leaving 7 young children behind, so I think my Father probably breathed a sigh of relief when his 32 year came around, just like I will be doing in my 42 birthday in a few days.  

Some times life goes in cycles without even anyone noticing, but I tend to take notice of these. My grandmother (Father's Mother) said I am the most like him out of all his children, I have all of his good traits and left a lot of his bad traits behind in my youth. My brother wasn't sure of living longer then "the old man" as my brother refers to my Father, but dying at 41 is no where near an old man. I was 16 at the time of his death and 41 did seem ancient to me, but funny how now that I am 41, I don't think of it as ancient anymore. I DO feel the years though, I no longer feel the need to party till the sun comes up and a quiet night at home sounds like time well spent now.  

I now watch my older 2 children go through the rigors of young adulthood with hardly any sleep and no desire to spend quality time at home with their family (tongue in cheek on that one) and I don't feel any jealousy about their youth and energy. I often think of people who go through mid life crisis is to tie up some loose ends on things they wish they had the opportunity to do when they were younger, I don't think I'll ever have a mid life crisis......I got everything out in my youth and I'm lucky to have survived most of it with only a few regrets and a few bad decisions... I made peace with myself a long time ago.

  I feel your 40's is a time to really celebrate life.......I am wiser, more conscious of others and their life experiences and I appreciate what they are willing to share with me, I am in good health, I have a loving family and I am financially stable, what's not to celebrate? I no longer repeat mistakes of my youth, I know WHO I am and I no longer second guess myself...I will also be leaving my fear of being 41 and wondering and waiting for my demise in the past.......hoping to have at least 41 more years of participating in life and taking nothing for grant it.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Winter's Rose



"The Rose"  

Some say love it is a river
that drowns the tender reed
Some say love it is a razor
that leaves your soul to bleed

Some say love it is a hunger
an endless aching need
I say love it is a flower
and you it's only seed

It's the heart afraid of breaking
that never learns to dance
It's the dream afraid of waking
that never takes the chance
It's the one who won't be taken
who cannot seem to give
and the soul afraid of dying

that never learns to live

When the night has been too lonely
and the road has been too long
and you think that love is only
for the lucky and the strong
Just remember in the winter

far beneath the bitter snows
lies the seed that with the sun's love
in the spring becomes the rose

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Abandoned Farm House


This old farm house was abandoned as well as the were broken, memories left scattered through the house as if the family just vanished....most old farms in my area are vanishing making was for what they call subdivisions....that makes me as sad as this old farm house

Book Creek



Book Creek......long ago watering hole for the once prospering dairy farm

Ole Gray Barn



Book Farm



America's Front Porch



A tribute to Americana at it's best.............American Farms

America's Front Porch
Photo's in series

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Say What????

  Yesterday was such a quiet, peaceful day around here, I thought at first maybe it was because the kids were back at school after a 3 day weekend, but it wasn't until last night when my cell phone rang and my 18 year old was screeeeeching about how come I haven't been answering the house phone all evening? I said, "Cuz it wasn't ringing?" she said, " Yes it has,I have been trying to reach you for the last three hours!!!" I said, "Not it hasn't" she said,"Yes it has!"...... Yes-No-Yes-No (This went on for about another minute, sometimes I just like to mess with them by having a conversation with them in the 'style' they use when trying to avoid a conversation with me, you know answers that don't really sound like answers and such.....I know....... I'm bad but it's nice to see them get frustrated once in awhile!!!) lol lol lol the whole time thinking why didn't she just call me on my cell phone after she couldn't reach me at the home number??? drama drama drama......Aurghhhhh!  

So I pick the phone up off the receiver and low and behold the line was dial I call the house from my cell and the house phone didn't ring, even though the call was going through as dialed by my cell phone, but the call went into the voice mail system............Hmmmmmm better call the phone wonder why the house was quiet! No annoying phone ringing off the hook for the kids!!!!! I call the phone company, notify them it's not working, they notify me it's a 24 hour wait for service possibly.....I don't care the phone is never for me anyway right??  

Mid morning today.... still no service........Ahhhhhh! I could get use to this kinda quiet......Phone rings.......Drats!!! I let the recorder pick it up....(Yes! Not only do we have voice mail but the old fashioned answering machine too....God forbid we don't get a message around here......funny things is I am the only one who doesn't get the message on one of those rare occasions when the phone rings and it's actually for me.) So after the recorder stops I pick up the phone and service.........hmmmmmm this is strange.......doorbell rings, Telephone man/boy is standing at my door....... "Hi Mam, blah blah blah from blah blah blah company, I just wanted to inform you your service is working again" I say,"No it's not" he says "Yes it is" I say, "nope! nope! nope!" and he says, "Yes it is Mam I fixed it" I say as I am handing him the cordless phone,"You hear a dial tone?" he says"Oh... it's not, we'll get it working for you right away Mam" I say, "Told ya sooooo!" thinking all the while this conversation is just like the kind I have with my kids but then again he was probably young enough to be my kid! lol   Few hours's not for me.....leave a message...........quiet time is over..............sighhhhhhhh

Sunday, January 23, 2005

old hurts, music and healing

  Again I found today's inspiration in another friends journal...."Girl Of God" She writes about feeling a lil down on herself and the ways she has coped with what she had to endure as a child and how it's long icy fingers still reach out to her and grab hold as an adult from time to time today....There is a link to her journal at the bottom of my entry. I too still deal with the remnants of childhood pain.... I think most of us still do.  

 I find comfort and wisdom in music...This Song was written by a much younger man (who I believe is a member of Nine Inch Nail) but redone by the Man in Black....Johnny was on his last album and it is by far his best work and his unchallenged best at story telling. It's about the endless cycle of self abuse after being abused.....It's real, it's raw and it's truth can be only has to substitute the word 'needle' and add the word only they know, and it will speak it's truth to them.


 I hurt myself today
to see if I still feel
I focus on the pain
the only thing that's real
the needle tears a hole
the old familiar sting
try to kill it all away
but I remember everything
what have I become?
my sweetest friend
everyone I know
goes away in the end
and you could have it all
my empire of dirt

I will let you down
I will make you hurt

I wear this crown of thorns
upon my liar's chair
full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair
beneath the stains of time
the feelings disappear
you are someone else
I am still right here

What have I become?
my sweetest friend
everyone I know
goes away in the end
and you could have it all
my empire of dirt

I will let you down
I will make you hurt

if I could start again
a million miles away
I would keep myself
I would find a way

Girl of God's link

I am dissappointed In Myself

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Over scheduled and a stuffy nose

Today is going to be a very busy day for me, and of course I woke up at 3:00 am with a stuffy nose and a headache. We were bracing ourselves for another significant snow fall but it looks to only be about 5 inches and temperatures in the 50's early next week should get rid of that soon enough.
I have found this amazing candle company that blows the competition out of the water! It's called Gold Canyon Candle Company Gold Canyon Candle Company, LLC <~~~ Link. Partylite has gone downhill over the last few years and even the over priced Yankee Candles can't touch these candles. I buy the largest jar, it runs about $14 and that one candle fills my entire house (3 levels) with incredible scents, my fav so far is Mountain Air, its a paraffin wax candle that does not burn hot, it is lead free wicked and comes in the most delicious scents! I am picking up a few today for gifts for up coming birthdays, so I am having coffee with the girlfriend that sold me on these candles this morning, then my youngest daughter has an audition for an upcoming winter carnival where if chosen she will be part of the entertainment for the 3 day event, she has hair raising talent that kid and when she starts to sing EVERYONE stops what they are doing and gets lost in her melodies and when she is finished, it's always to thunderous applause and kudos for Mom for birthing her of course! lol and I get to stand in her light for a few minutes, usually with tears of Mother's pride streaming down my face. (some day I will figure out how to get a sample of her in this darn journal! lol)
Then later this afternoon I have a Pampered Chef party to go to, good timing considering I'm still in the throws of my cooking mania. Then my evening will end at a friends surprise 40th birthday party at the club house at the lake, I'm hoping for clear skies tonight because after this new snow fall the lake should look beautiful bathed in the blue of the night sky and I canget a few good shots to share later. I'm exhausted just going over today's plans......Maybe I'll need a few expresso's to get me through it all! lol Over scheduled and a stuffy nose

Friday, January 21, 2005


I finally felt like taking my camera in hand and getting out there and snapping off a few rolls of film starring... Ole Man Winter. Now I wish I would of done this sooner........:(

Last summer while out for a ride in the older rural areas of where I live (still can't believe they existed just an hour or so west of Chicago) I found this field with 4 old white washed barns on fieldstone walls of varying shapes and sizes. I thought what a wonderful winter scene this would be with the flat gold color of the winter grass peeking through a thin blanket of new fallen snow. So I bundled myself up and set out with my camera's in hand and a few rolls of APS film and took a ride.  As the road to this old farm approached I felt my heart sink there was a rather large sign for a new subdivision going up and as I made my turn off the road, there in the field, sat a bulldozer and the only thing that remained standing was one of the old fieldstone walls, that had supported a barn for all those years. Now I only have the picture left in my mind of that shot never taken.

 I was saddened but determined so I decided I would find some other old farms to try and capture their rustic beauty. I found plenty of farms and barns with various shades of barn yard red and one that was done in a deep hunter green, but before I could get a few shots off their dog sent me running! lol So many of these old farms are left abandoned and they look so sad to me know with their broken art glass windows, and cracking foundations and paint peeling front porches. I love the old country porches, many held Old Glory and rocking chairs. How sad and lonely a porch looks when not occupied. I find a lot of things sad when I see they are no longer being used for what they intended for.....old factories...old store fronts....old boats and such.

The stories that must be held inside those walls, especially the old farm houses, a family lived and loved there once and now it's left vacant to either weather away with Mother Nature or the bulldozer. I found one still filled with family belongings and the doors wide open and the windows all broken out of their once Victorian painted frames. I was tempted to go in and look around, take a few shots of what life looked like on the inside looking out, but only God knows what I might of ran into in there! My devil may care attitude of my youth is nothing but a fleeting memory, where I never missed a chance to try anything once!

I hope to have at least a few worth posting shots, so if I do I promise to post in another series of Americana at it's best.....Our old and weathered farms.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Almost Pary Time Ü

The first "JUST THE GIRLS CRUISE" is less then a month away and I am getting sooooo excited!! I'm going to the Doctor later this morning to get the 'Patch" for sea sickness just in case and a prescription for xanax just in case I totally freak out once I am on the ship! lol They say a good way to fight a fear is to take it head on and me and my lil bottle of xanax are ready to conquer the world.....ok maybe not the world.... but a ship!

I'm getting together with the girls this upcoming weekend to finalize all the details and I am making them all a CD of the best vacation/cruise music compiled! That way they can listen to it and get all hyped up right along with me about this cruise! I already have my outfits picked out and my matching shoes of course, my sister-in-law is trying to talk me into trying those spray on tans, so me with my luminous Irish skin won't blind the other passengers or the wonderful people of Mexico! lol

So far the CD will contain.......Sea Cruise by the fabulous Jerry Lee Lewis (Love love love that song!) then a lil Otis Redding with Under the Boardwalk, followed by Some Beach by Blake Shelton, then what's a vacation CD without a lil Beach Boys??? huh?? huh?? They are contributing California Dreaming. We will need a lil dance music too of course so what could be more appropriate then Pink's Let's get this party started? Of course Toby Keith's What happens in Mexico and Jose Cuervo by miss Shelly West are must haves! lol
My all time favorite Led Zeppelin song.... Going to California, we need a lil James Taylor Mexico thrown in for good measure. And being a Chi Town girl I absolutely have to add Come Sail Away by the Chicago band who started out by playing at local Proms here in them!! If anyone has any other suggestions please pass them along to me..Ü

I sooooo need a break from all this doom and gloom of winter here in Chicago and I can't wait to.........GET THIS PARTY STARTED! OK who can I count on for bail money......our husbands already told us Don't even bother calling them! If we did something and we all ended up in jail we probably deserve to sit there for awhile.........Thinking there's a lil sour grapping going on there cuz they aren't invited!!!!! lol lol lol

Thursday, January 13, 2005

My not so secret -secret crush list lol

Ok so besides still having this huge crush on my Husband I thought it was time to share a few more of my not so secret-secret crushes.

As mentioned in an earlier entry my biggest crush will always be Sam Elliot! That man just drips raw sexuality to me, I love his look, his style and THAT voice just does something to me. My secret love affair started with him when he starred in the movie "MASK" opposite Cher and I have been in love with him ever since!

Bruce Willis is another crush..........that man made BALD SEXY to me! lol I think he looks finer and finer the more he ages, I liked him in "MOONLIGHTING" but it wasn't till he lost most of his hair and decided to shaved the rest that he turned into one sexy man to me! I also love his comedic personality......being able to make someone laugh and enjoy your presence is a huge plus in many women's books!

Nicolas Cage is another man I find myself strangely attracted too.....I don't think of him as having the "IT" factor but there is something about that man that I am drawn too......It could be his quirky personality too....I fell in love with him watching "RAISING ARIZONA"

Elvis Presely....I know what your thinking! lol but lets face it no matter what decade or century that man could have been born in, he had the "LOOK" the "IT" factor.....I think I fell in love with him when I was 7 and now watching his old videos (Pre drug days) and listening to his music lets face it the man was HOT HOT HOT! I am so glad I was just a child otherwise I would of been sucha groupie! lol

Johnny Depp is another man who I think has something smoking about him even though he is kinda on the small side, I like men who are a bit more manly lol but he has the look that you know that there is something smoldering deep down in him when you look into his eyes, he looks like he would be a hopeless romantic and lets face it we love men who can relate to the beauty in who can see it and not just only feel it.

Viggo Mortenson from the Lord of the Rings.......but strangely I'm only finding myself attracted to him as Aragorn the character he played in that movie......I'm not sure what that's all about but he was sexy as all get out in that role....maybe its the dark hair and those fabulous blue eyes of his and the long hair and grungy look did well for him.

OK these are the men that are at the top of my list....I would love to hear about who has the "IT" factor to you! As far as I'm concerned my list brings on an instant "HOT FLASH" with me lol lol lol

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

40, Fabulous and FUN!!!!

Yesterday was a girlfriends 40th Birthday, one she has been avoiding and dreading for the past two years. Now I love being 40 - something, 29 bothered me way more than 40 ever did. So I wanted to let her know you can be 40 & FABULOUS! While looking in the 40's birthday aisle I was disappointed to see 'over the hill' stuff and everything colored in black.......40 is nothing to mourn about.....there is a freedom that comes along with being 40 something that you can't explain to a 20 or 30 something year's becoming more accepting of yourself and others and the freedom that comes along with that, you stop dwelling over your past and become excited about the present and the future.

What better way to celebrate being 40 & FABULOUS then with feathery boa's and a tiara right??? So there we all sat last night at this fantastic Mexican restaurant that is her favorite, with all of us looking so fine in our feathery boa's and her looking very DIVA-ISH in her boa and tiara with scepter in hand! All bright colors of course! WE WERE FABULOUS not to mention quite the spectacles too, but when your 40 something you just don't care what others think...told ya...being 40 something is awesome!

The food was excellent, the conversation was raucous borderlining on raunchy at times, thanks to the flowing margarita's and there was endless giggles about showing up at her door to pick her up with all of us in our best and most colorful bras on the outside of our clothes and a birthday banner saying "Good friends SUPPORT you in good times and bad times AND turning 40!" Her husband thought we must have lost our minds! I know my husband did! When I was getting ready to leave he was outside looking at one of our daughter's cars and I flashed him while getting into my truck and I just laughed as I read his lips which read,"What the hell is she doing now?" and then he just quietly went back to doing what he was doing while shaking his head! Many years after we were married I had asked him beside loving me what were some of the other reasons why he wanted to marry me and he said......."Besides loving you big time, I knew that I would be more miserable without you then I could ever be with you and I knew being married to you would mean my life would never have a dull moment" I know for some, they weren't the most romantic words ever uttered, but to me they were the most perfect words ever whispered to me!................. And yes I still do, have such a wonderful crush on this man! lol lol lol

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Heard it in a love song

I'm not sure if the younger generations know about the talents of Gordon Lightfoot...He is an amazing song writer and story teller for more than 40 years. His songs are timeless..... I remember rollerskating to them in the 70's a the local roller rink, falling in love listening to them during the 80's, traveling back in time listening to them in the 90's and appreciating his talents even more now in this decade ......He writes about life and love and about being in love with life

Gordon Lightfoot

At times I just don't know
How you could be anything but beautiful
I think that I was made for you
And you were made for me

And I know that I won't ever change
We've been friends through rain or shine
For such a long, long time

Laughing eyes and smiling face
It seems so lucky just to have the right
Of telling you with all my might
You're beautiful tonight

 And I know that you won't ever stray
Cause you've been that way from day to day
For such a long, long time

And when you hold me tight
How could life be anything but beautiful
I think that I was made for you
And you were made for me

And I know that I won't ever change
We've been friends through rain or shine
For such a long, long time

Well, I must say it means so much to me
To be the one who's telling you
I'm telling you, that you're beautiful.  

This one by far is my favorite of his........ its a timeless love song.


Monday, January 10, 2005

Embracing my Manic side

OK, Now that I'm 40 something I have learned that I run my life in mini cycles, there is the shopping cycle, the reading cycle, the cleaning cycle, the cooking cycle, the extremely minimal health kick cycle, the writing cycle and last but not least the photography cycle. I just ended the cleaning cycle and am into the cooking cycle, my family is beside themselves over this, I have been on kitchen strike for almost 2 years... they were LUCKY to get 4 home cooked meals a month. I am sooooo wondering why I have not been fired from this position of Stay At Home Goddess! I mean... aren't I supposed to be like super Mom/Wife like Bree on Desperate Housewives?? Aren't I supposed to LOVE excelling at being a Stay At Home Goddess?? For everyone that knows me and knows me well and still loves me refers to my Husband as a Saint James......Don't get me wrong I am a lovable person but difficult and spoiled.

I spent August, September, October and November throwing all my heart and soul into my writing and now I barely visit my journal, December I started my cleaning kick and now In January I am in the throws of power cooking, I'm cooking so much right now that I am sending dinner over to the neighbors! lol  She has two very young and quite active boys and if she can say her own name right now it's a good day....So I've been sharing my cooking bounty with her and her family and she appreciates it. I did tinker with my camera's over the holidays, but nothing spectacular has showed up during developing, but at least I took some shots..I haven't touched my camera since early spring last year I think.

The flu as pretty much devastated my family right now, my 2 youngest are both home today sleeping on bath room floors that have been bathed in Lysol, not to mention my youngest daughter has the worst inner ear infections that the Doc has seen this winter so it's been an adventure to get the meds to stay in her long enough to attack the infection. Thank God we have 3 bathrooms so at least one is still functioning as a bathroom and not a sick room. All's I know is when I'm sick I WANT MY BED!! But they prefer to sleep on the bathroom floor....but then again they don't even know what sciatica is! lol If I laid on the bathroom floor it would take me a few hours to get back up! lol.......Oh Well "MOM" is being paged again.....oh the joys of Motherhood and flu season!

Sunday, January 2, 2005

New Year's Eve 2 lol

Ever have such a good time with friends and family that you never wanted the night to end? That's what happened New Year's Eve! New Year's Eve is also my Husbands birthday so we always like to include friends and family along with their children. For us, it's always been nice to celebrate ushering in the new year having our children with us.

This year the party was at my Sister and her Husbands house, we had probably 40 people and 10 kids running around! The food is always good, the company is even better and winning at the Poker table was even better! We also played a game of dice called CLR it's faster and a lot less complicated then some of the games of poker they were playing!

The party ended for us around 2 a.m but she still had guests till 3:30 am. I told ya it was a good time! lol Everyone went home and got a few hours of sleep and we all ended back over at my sister's house Saturday for round 2! This time was a lot less glamorous, sweat shirts and jeans but just as much fun, kids and all! I think it's because we were all missing our gatherings at the lake every weekend like we do all summer, and speaking of summer it was 40 something degrees here in Chicago on New Year's Eve! You can't beat that!

Now today is even warmer than that, but the long 2 day party finally caught up to everyone and the guys didn't even make it out to ice fish today, everyone stayed at home and licked their wounds from a rowdy 2 day party! It's almost 2 p.m. and I'm still in my PJ's wondering what hit me!

Happy New Year.........she shouts.....very lol lol

Saturday, January 1, 2005

updates on pics I promised

I'm so late with getting picture posted it's not even funny. I had mentioned in an earlier entry about hosting an annual Christmas Party with my husband for the Salmon Fishing club he belongs to here in the Great Lakes area and I promised to post a picture of the centerpieces I whipped up this year. We usually have over 100 people at these parties and I like the tables to look nice, so I make centerpieces every year and this one had me hot gluing myself to the dinning room table aka my craft table. lol


This was easy and very inexpensive to make and turned out gorgeous!

Wooden candles sticks with a larger lip and a spike for sticking in candles (found at the Dollar Store)
silver based wash paint
5 inch Styrofoam balls
Christmas Tree Garland (I bought the one that was iridescent in color (white) with snow specks on it and silver snowflakes attached)
hot glue and gun
a few branches of beads wired on a spray
wire cutters

Wash the candles sticks in a paint color of your choice, let dry
cut the garland in strands long enough to go top to bottom on the Styrofoam ball, hot glue gun garland pieces to Styrofoam ball leaving a small area open. Apply hot glue all over the lip of the candles stick and stick decorated ball and hold till glue is set. Snip individual silver balls (beads) off of spray with wire cutters and stick randomly into ball to fill up any thinning spots between garland and waaaaaaa laaaaaaa a shimmering table setting that looks expensive and can be made in under 6 dollars a piece!

And now on TO THE CUTEST PUPPY IN THE WORLD! He is still waiting for his hernia surgery, he has turned into the million dollar puppy, we had to start his series of shots all over from the beginning because we found out the breeder started his shots to early and then we he developed kennel cough there was too long of a lapse in between the shots, then he tested positive for worms (poor thing) and now he's just waiting for a 2 week break for his last shots. Because he is so small they had to break up the series of shots. But through all his ailments he's still a happy lil Pup and has taken all his meds like a champ. He had his first hair cut too, they said he was a very good boy! He even likes baths! He is sooo sweet I couldn't have gotten a better disposition pup! I just love 'MY Boo!"