Coming Soon: Free Book

Coming Soon: Free Book
Planning to give away a book or two!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012


It's starting to come together. :^) It has been a LONG day. When I started this morning there was still dirt and some weeds in the pathway. It took me all morning just to get the excess dirt out and the ground level.  This afternoon I put two form sections down, then took a break. The humidity is high and when I'm dripping sweat on the blocks as I'm trying to smooth out the top; well that says break time to me. I kept breaks to 15 minutes.

I figured out that this project will take about 27 bags of quickcrete (1 bag per form). I've used 8 so far.  I have 12 more in my trunk.  So much work, so little time.....

Demolition Done and the new tub is bad!

I was surprised how the demo affected me.  It stirred up every allergy I had. Under the tub where it leaked, there was black mold growing.  That board was safely removed (not by me but by a friend with professional tools.)  The plumber recommended since everything was pulled out that we raise the base of the tub three inches. That will help the drainage and should stop the drain from freezing in the winter.  We added insulation in the three inch platform.

The new tub, not even fully out of the box, and I saw a two inch long marr.  I called the store. Luckily they had ONE left in stock and set it aside until I can get there tomorrow to exchange them. I am now 24 hours behind! 

I am sure you are curious about the tub.  It was not a joke. There was insufficient support under the tub. Foam was sprayed under but did not reach the section of the tub that needed the suport.  I'm glad I chose to follow my gut and replace the tub instead of repair it.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Road Trip

Okay maybe just a short trip up to the store to buy flowers for a local business, my new tub and tub surround.  $200 in flowers
and $600 for the bathroom.  now to find the time to take it to the next step.  I started the demolition and got to a point that I needed to turn off the water. My renter was upstairs so I decided to wait until today to finish it.   We went shopping and all of a sudden it is 4PM!  Some how I need to finda way to covet my time.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Dr. Trish and Dr. Dale

Short term we are taking in a male doberman.  He has a bad habit of licking at his paw until it gets raw.  He is a special doberman to us since he is the sire of the first two litters. It will be a BIG challenge having 3 dobermans in town. Sid needs almost constant supervision.  It appears a big part of his problem is that he gets left alone while his human works.  She hs a single parent home and doesn't have any choice.  Dale is home more during the day, so hopefully Sid will get enough people time.

Doberman's are VERY needy dogs. Sometimes referred to as bungie butt dogs.  The desire to be with their people all the time and pleasing their peoples is very strong.  They are definitely mans best friend. And they expect you to be their best friend too. 

Friday, July 27, 2012

God's Answer to Prayer

Yes, No and Not yet (in God's time).

This must be old movie and TV show week. Do you remember the show "Touched by an Angel"?  The show Promised Land spun off from there. Almost like they saw the recession heading towards America. The Father lost his job and had a lot of anger. The angels stepped in and reminded the Father, who had moved away from God, of a prayer that he had prayed when he was young.  Now, some 30(?) years later God was answering his prayer.  "In God's time, not ours"

Have you ever had something happen in your life that triggers a memory?  The memory is a prayer that was prayed years before.  And it triggers a Holy Ghost moment of giggles and excitement as you realize that God is close to answering a prayer that you had given up on being answered. In God's time and in God's style, it makes me want to smile!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Mary Poppins

Practically perfect in every way.  We had a record (those black things that go on a turntable- do I need to explain turntable too?)  We had a record and story book combination of several Disney stories. Before VCR's this was the entertainment for a sick kid at home. (Sorry, I regress.)

Other than learning how to read, I learned that when the wind blew from the other direction...everything began to change.  Mary Poppins only stayed until the wind changed direction again.

Looks like the wind is changing directions.

Demolition day starts soon

I am not sure if I have a defective tub, if it was installed wrong or a bit of both. When the tub was installed, I stepped in and felt the "spongy" feeling. I mentioned it to the installer and he mentioned that he forgot the support under the tub. He contacted someone that told him he could spray foam insulation in and it would give it enough support.

That could have been a joke because (as a stereo-type) contractors have a different sense of humor and speak a language that I don't understand.

When the crack appeared, I called and was told that the contractor knew what he was doing and would NEVER forget to put supports under the tub.  That I should have a surface repair specialist come in and fix it.  Really???? There is this HUGE soft spot and paying someone to fix a small crack is not going to fix the problem if there is no support under it.  I guess I won't know for sure until the demo is complete.

I have a week of "vacation" to demolish the bathroom, have a plumber correct any plumbing issues and re-installing a new tub.  Lord help me! I've done constuction before but with so many unknowns...I'm a bit nervous.  Keep an eye on the updates over the next 10 days.

Looking at the pictures, the crack is at about one o'clock in the blue died water. I died it so you could see the "spongy" area.  The crack is a little bigger than a quarter.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Remember the Voodoo Lily? Devil's Tongue?

I think next summer I need to buy another matching container.
My bulbs are multiplying and I didn't realize how much until I walked by the container today.  The rain along with hot-humid days have made the plants florish.

I got my first bulbs about 20 years ago.  They are a bulb that in Minnesota, would die out in the winter.  By a special miracle, some that my grandmother planted close to the house survived.  I was nurturing a few bulbs in a pot when my Aunt and Uncle revealed that they had more bulbs and they shared a few more with me.

I've only had the one bloom that was the one I shared with you this spring. The massive green here shows you what the future potential is...

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Hide and Seek

Sometimes I take the girls to the park and Dale stays behind.  When he sees me starting to park, he hides.  I know that when I walk in that if he isn't sitting on a recliner that I'm supposed to prompt the girls to look for him.

"Where's daddy?" Or "Where's grandpa?" Gets the girls running circles in the house. This particular day, he hid in plain site and they both walked by him.  After all, it's their kennel not his. 

They finally saw him and they weren't sure what to do.  I guess I can't threaten him with the dog house...hmm. LOL

Monday, July 23, 2012

Family Time

Weekends are great for family time.  In between the projects, there is always time to spend with family. Even those of us with unconditional families.

My boyfriend has his place, I have my place, and we have two beautiful dobermans.  One is the common black/rust and her baby which is red/fawn.  Duchess, the mama, sleeps with me at my place and My Jenny, the baby, sleeps with Dale at his place.  After all, two large dogs and a human are a tight fit in a bed.

We took a short shopping trip on Saturday and went fishing on Sunday. Every time we get into the car...the dogs work hard to get "the best spot" for watching the oncoming cars and getting our attention.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Princess Dolls

A sweet summer memory of mine is visiting Grandma Stella on the farm.  One of her many loves was gardening.  I guess that was where I got my love of texture and variety in the garden.

Grandma was always good at making home made toys. In the summer we made these little one day dolls.  Any time the hollyhocks were blooming, all you need to do is pick a flower with a full stem (the stems are very short.) Then Pick a bud or seed pod with no stem. Poke the bud in the center with the tip of a scissor or knife. Carefully place the stem of the flower into the slit created in the bud. 

You know have a little doll dressed in a beautiful gown. Time to be a little girl again and play will my dolls.   ;^)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

6th Annual Adoption Ride

The sirens blew on the fire truck as he slowly drove up manstreet following behind was the rumble of thunder.  80 to 100 motorcycles of all kinds of makes and models.  Some sweet classics and some of the newest models. All for a good cause.   At least they had a beautiful day for a ride. 

Friday, July 20, 2012


Forgiveness is like setting a prisoner free then finding out that prisoner is you.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Change - The only thing constant in life

There are only a few things in life that are ever certain. If you are given life you have been born. Then change happens continually until you die. Sometimes we seem to have control over the change but most of the time the change is happening regardless of what we want.

Some changes are like a stack of pennies, many small parts that eventually make a big impact. Others are like the quarters that add up twenty five times faster and make a bigger impact. But change is change and there is always something changing.

When I started writing this I thought, "I wish I had a river nearby to take a picture of."  What a better example of change is there than a flowing river?  Streams merge into the river all the time. When the rain falls to replenish the earth, some falls directly into the river ever so slowly increasing the water level.

Greater amounts accumulate from the run off that runs over the roads and across the fields. This creates changes faster and faster.  The rivers never sit still, they are in constant movement and change. Why should we expect that our lives should sit still?
Ready for more change??

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Story Behind the BIG Canning Day!

Sunday night my boyfriend asked if I had ordered the cherries yet. There is a Mennonite family near our place orders bulk foods. We've always been pleased with the cherries. But with fruit what you get could change every year.

We found the phone number and I called.  I reserved 2 cases of cherries (18# each) and a case of blueberries (12 pints). They offered me bing or rainier cherries.  I think I said somthing like, "I know what Bing cherries are." To which he replied, "we can show you the difference when you pick them up tomorrow."

TOMORROW!?!?  I did't reply to him that way but I sure thought it.  I quickly realized that I had created an emergency. Luckily, I was able to get a last minute day of vacation.  Sometimes the timing works out.  YEAH!

I got to the farm place to pick up the fruit. I found out about the other half of the story.  I had missed the original order.  That fruit arrived on July third.  But Sunday just hours before I called, they had received a call.  A truck driver was taking a load of New Jersey blue berries and Washington cherries to Canada. But the paperwork that he was given was the wrong paperwork.  They were called to see if they wanted to take more.  Since they ran out and before, they new they could get rid of them.

Thank you God for the wonderful blessing!  (I'm going to feel the pain from stiff/soar muscles for the next few days.)

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Only half done and it's 4PM!

All of the blueberries have been processed. I made 2 blueberry pies, 2 kinds of muffins, jam with sugar and with honey (seperate batches), icecream and frozen yogurt.  We de-stemmed and de-pitted a box of cherries last night. I've made cherry ice cream and yogurt, muffins, jam with sugar and with honey (again seperate batches).  It is time to do dishes. Then I think we are going to freeze the rest of the cherries for processing later. 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Sneak Peek

It has been nearly 10 years since I've used my mold.  So I thought I'd better do a test run.  Good thing I did because I had a bit of a problem. So only 80% of the mold got used. The goal is to finish the section in about two weeks.

And as for the other picture....the cherries and blueberries came in.  Wait until you see what we do with them.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Same garden, different day

Variety is the spice of life.  I get so busy sometimes that I don't drive by the front of my house. 

Yesterday, I was doing the heavy metal test where you take a huge amount (32) pills designed for metal detoxification and drink a lot of water.  Then you collect the urine for six hours.  Needless to say thay many pills always sends my stomach rolling.  So when I needed to run for something it was with the car.

I parked closest to the door (infront of the house.) Stomach feeling ok at the time, I sat and admired the changes in the garden.  Black-eyed Suzies are one of my favorite flowers.  It was extra nice that the birds or squirrels planted some sunflowers in the back of the garden. 

I need to get the other side weeded again soon.  So much to do and so little time. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

The boy and the dragon

Once there was a loney boy who lived in the country at the edge of the woods.  One morning as he was walking in the woods and a baby dragon crossed his path.  The baby dragon was full of play and spunk.  The lonely boy could not resist but to play with this young dragon.

They played hide and seek around the trees then they played fetch for a while and when they were both tired, they lay down to rest. They had become fast friends. The boy knew that the dragon couldn't come home with him so he asked him stay by the woods until he returned. And every day he did just that. One day the dragon had gotten so large that as boy greeted him with a hug, the dragon flipped him onto his back and took off flying. At first the boy was afraid, but when his dragon friend turned and winked at him, he knew everything was okay. He had never before felt such freedom. For the first time in his life, he was seeing how small the world around him was and how much more there was for him to see. It gave him hope. They flew all day, until the sun was setting. Then just like every other day in the past, the dragon lay by the woods and watched his special friend walk home. He knew that tomorrow would be here very soon.

Friday, July 13, 2012


We are in Dairy country.  So there are a lot of alfalfa fields.  Every 28 days they harvest the crop.  I've only recently looked at it up close. It has a very purple flower.  I mentioned to Dale that I didn't remember seeing flowers on the alfalfa before.  He told me it used to be that the farmers wait until they saw the blooms to harvest and now it is every 28 days.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Rules of the Road

First of all, I was stopped when I took this picture. 

Second, the picture was taken several miles down the road when I had a clear and safe spot to take the picture. Therefore, the markings are different than what I describe later.

I was driving down this country road, narrow to no shoulder and riding towards me on my side of the road was a bicyclist.  Her arm flung out at a 90 degree angle to the right and to make sure I understood her message she pumped her arm in and out.

 I saw the full yellow line that I was hugging to my left and the HUGE dark blue pick up coming towards me on the other side of the road. 

Sorry lady, follow the rules. Unless things have changed in the last few years, when on a bicycle you need to follow the same rules as a car.  Drive on the right side of the road and signal when turning. (Don't worry. I made sure she had "enough" room.)

I wanted to yell at her when she rode past giving me "the dirty look" as she moved over onto the narrow gravel shoulder.  Instead I prayed, "God, make sure she notices this pick-up truck that she thought I should cross over the yellow line and run into."

I have noticed that often times the people who get the most angry are the ones in the wrong. Maybe because your doing the right thing disrupts their bad choice?

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


I drive Dale crazy because I take with SO MUCH stuff on the boat.  I pack a bag with water or pop, a bite to eat, treats for the dogs, a water container for the dogs, sunscreen, two umbrella's (shade for the dogs), a book, sometimes knitting or crocheting, my camera, my fishing license just in case I really decide to fish.  Everything except the kitchen sink or so he says.

He just doesn't understand that it is as much about relaxing as fishing for me.  I take care of the dogs (that means keep them out of his way.)  I also help to net the big fish.  Most of all, I get to relax.  If I catch a few fish that is just a bonus.

This weekend I was grateful that I had my camera with.  We were on Clear Lake and saw people taking off from a nearby park - parasailing. 

Fun in the sky
  Okay, Fun for someone but not me.  I'm not afraid of heights.  I fly small airplanes.  But I am afraid of my feet dangling in the air with nothing solid beneath them.  Other than that, this looks like it would be a blast.  I was told later that this person is visiting from New Zealand.  They definitely have a wonderful memory (and view) of Minnesota.

Parasailing on Clear Lake
  The spotters in the boat were keeping a close eye on the person harnessed into the parachute.

 The next few seconds the shoot will keep moving on as the person lands in the water (most of the time.) 

Parasailing at Sunset

We left the lake as the sun was going down.  I would imagine that they left shortly behind us.  What an absolutely perfect way to spend a summer weekend. 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Do you know this flower?

I love the texture and colors in this flower.  This is a common weed found in the road ditches of country roads.  Milkweed.  It gets it's name because if you pick the flower or break a leaf, a milky looking sticky substance oozes out. 

I used to have silica gel that I picked flowers (not just these) and carefully sprinkled the granules over the flowers where they sat for a few days until they were dry. 

As a young child, I remember pulling these "weeds".  Now that I've seen the flower and learned how to craft with the dried pod. I'm tempted to plant more.

Saturday, July 7, 2012


Last night a string of storms went rolling just south of us.  It was so close that I could see the lightening yet no rain fell.  According to the news reports the storms were about 30 miles South of us. 

I took my first photography class in Senior high school. I remember trying to catch lightening on my manual 35MM several times in the years since.  WOW, I love my digital! I snapped about 600 pictures. I got over 200 with interesting light or lightening in them. 



"S" Lightening

Dog Silhouette

Friday, July 6, 2012

Up and Down

On the way home from work, I was chatting with my sister.  We both have outside temperatures that show in the dashboard.

"Oh,it's nice out here 78 degrees.  It's warmer in my car." My sister started out.

"It's 99 and humid here."  We were about 80 miles apart and heading towards eachother. 

A few minutes down the road, 79....97

The conversation continued until. 95..82

"There is obviously a front between us."  We each had about 20 miles to drive.  The temperature dropped 9 degrees on the way home.  Drop zones disconnected us and I forgot to check to see how much hers raised. Living so close we usually don't see such a difference in temperature.


Just after the drop zone was where I was meeting Dale and the dogs by the fishing pier.  I just had to take a picture or two or you. 

Three hours later and over 20 degrees cooler. The heat wave is broken.  I like it warm, but enough is enough! Yeah!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Regal lady

Duchess has been calming down more each day. The puppy phase is over...thank goodness because two dogs in puppy phase is a bit too much to handle. But doesn't she look georgeous?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Happy Birthday America!

Our fore-fathers fought so that each person could be free from government oppression. Free from having the government dictate our religion to us.  Free to make our own choices!
It is time once again to fight as our fore-fathers did for our freedom from government and for our freedom of choice. In the past 3 years we have watched the government take over businesses. We are seeing our government mandate health insurance.  ...what will happen to those whose religion conflicts with doctoring or using insurances?
Did you know that health insurance in America is only about 90 years old? BCBS (Blue Cross Blue Shield) is only about 80 years old.  Ironically one of the reasons that health insurance was slow to take hold was that it was so difficult to access the risk.  An ill person could lie and get insurance then knowingly cost the company large amounts. How many times have you heard, "their doctor just gave them a clear bill of health" when a person is fighting cancer or had a sudden heart-attack.
At the very origin of health insurance, it wasn't considered a hands down successful proposition.  On the contrary it was considered too easy to fail. So the current government, in it's great wisdom decides to reform a sinking ship by adding more weight to it. 
I was five years without health insurance by my choice.  During that time, I learned a lot about treating illnesses using natural remedies.  Twice I went to a doctor and paid cash.  I paid more because I didn't have an insurance company to negotiate a "reasonable" cost. Do you know doctors don't like treating people on medicare because that definition of "reasonable" is excessively low.
Our government thinks health insurance reform means adding more weight to a sinking ship. We need health care reform. If I go to a doctor, I should get a discount for paying cash. Doctors need to stop practicing and start healing with low cost options. 
Will some people be lost along the way? Probably; but if you think Obama-care won't have people lost along the way then you have missed a lot about what this program is about.  People that have costly illnesses will go through such a long approval process that it will be too late before they receive the treatment needed to save their lives.  Infants and young children will be another group hard hit. A government agency will look into the possibility of the child's future and determine if they are worth it.
Will you be the one deemed too expensive to maintain? Will your child with a major or chronic illness not make it because of a government committees decision?
STEP UP AND FIGHT FOR OUR FREEDOM! FIGHT FOR LESS GOVERNMENT CONTROL! Let's make the founders of this country proud. Let's take control of our lives again! Let's pay off our debts and remember that we were founded as "One Nation Under GOD!"  Not under a god but under God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.
Stand up and fight!

Photo by Trisha Field
One Nation Under God.   Let's fight for our Freedom!

Decisions, decisions

Have you ever noticed that when you make one decision there is almost always a chain effect? One decision leads to another question or issue and another decision. 

It is HOT out this week. But I work in an air-conditioned building.  The thing is big buildings with multiple zones are unpredictable.  Hot days outside make it more difficult for the air to keep up.

Today my first decision was what to wear...cotton breatheable clothing. Three quarter length sleeves. But the office in my area was very stale.  I keep both a fan and a space heater at my desk. On any given day no matter the season, either appliance could be working.  My domino decision today fan or heater.  The fan won today.  When the air is cycling more frequently, same heat outside, I run the space heater (unless I can sneak over and open the window.)

Monday, July 2, 2012

Okay I admit it...

Today is HOT outside.  Before you say Duh! I like warm and hot weather.  I don't appreciate the humidity or "sultry" weather. Weeks like this are some of the few that I don't mind air conditioning.  I set mine at 75 degrees.  Just enough to draw the humidity out of the air. 

My poor boyfriend does the maintenance at an assisted living center. These poor people think their whole apartments should be freezing from tiny little window units.  He is doing his best to make sure they are all working, even if not up to residents expectations. 

So enjoy the heat...bottle it up and save it for January.  (My prediction is an extreme cold January this year.)

Bucket Lists...

Do you know what is all on your bucket list?  I have a few definite ideas on mine. But this weekend I realized that at times you can check something off your bucket list that you didn't even think of putting on it.

My nephew graduated from high school this spring.  He and his best friend decided to share their graduation party.  Coming from a family of hunters it isn't unusual to see guns around.  Infact, I hosted a two week exchange girl from Japan about ten years ago. The one thing on her bucket list was to shoot a gun. A friend of mine brought over to Wisconsin a handgun and two different rifles. But my mouth dropped open when I saw the 50 Cal Sniper Riffle set up pointed at an old pick up.  (It pays to live out in the country.)

Photo by Trisha
Before you shoot the 50 Cal Sniper Riffle
  Steve (I think that was his name) gave a full lesson on shooting the 50 Cal Sniper Riffle. Several fire extinguisers were on hand as well as ear plugs.  The men (mostly) lined up to shoot the gun. 

Photo by Trisha

Photo by Trisha

Photo by Trisha Field
Someone hit the target

Photo by Trisha

Photo by Trisha
 I could see the desire in my sisters eyes.  But being the Minnesota nice woman that she is... she stayed back.  (Until her obnoxious sister prodded her to take her turn.) - oh, that was me.   She hit her mark.  She is an excellent shot. (The explosive on the truck had already been hit.) 

Photo by Trisha
Whose your momma?
 I don't think shooting a 50 Cal Sniper Riffle was on her bucket list. Being any where around one was not on mine.  But for both of us, we were grateful for the opportunity and exposure.  I wonder what other things I haven't thought to put on my bucket list?