Monday, December 15, 2014


This is the story of a snowman. I saw it at a local craft show. He was roly poly, wearing a blue hat and plaid scarf. He carried a birdhouse and had a big button nose. He reminded me of Frosty, and I was instantly smitten. Made up my mind, there and then... he was coming home with me. I was so excited I could not wait to put him out on my front porch for the Christmas holiday. But... as I was driving home, my enthusiasm waned. I was not the only one with that idea. There, sitting on my next door neighbor’s  porch, was the same exact snowman I had bought. I was devastated. We couldn’t have twin snowmen, we just couldn’t. I’d never hear the end of it. They’d make a big deal, that they got their snowman first, and then they'd say, I was a copy cat. Neighborhood politics can be very  tricky. In my heart, I knew in order to display mine I’d have to alter his appearance. So... I rummaged through my garage and found what I needed to make him a new man, so to speak. First, I removed the birdhouse. This was no easy task, since it was nailed in. But I did it. I then replaced it with a wooden, red and white candy-cane. After that, all I needed to do... was to add a few more color changes. Putting a red scarf around his neck... and a red hat on top of his head... my snowman was now, no carbon copy.  He was good to go. He was uniquely himself, to my hearts delight. And he’s been gracing my front porch on and off, for the past decade. And, my neighbor’s are none the wiser.

Monday, December 8, 2014


This is the time of the year, when people put up their Christmas decorations… bathing their houses, and trees, in pretty bright lights. Because the plug in lights are UL rated we make the assumption that all lights are safe. That is not the case. I want to tell you a little story about something that recently happened to me. I have alot of little vignettes throughout my house where I put lights. Because these areas are small, I tend to use battery powered lights. This year I bought a few boxes of them at Menards. I was getting ready to put them out and about... But first, I wanted to test them to see if they worked. It’s a good thing I did, otherwise we could have had a BIG problem on our hands. What happened was this. I put the double AA batteries in the control box and flipped the switch on. Normally the lights would light and you’d be all set for Christmas. In this case, I did that… and smoke immediately filled the room, as the lights started to spark. The smell was horrible. I had to yank the batteries out of the control box, asap, to avoid a fire.  It was a scary moment, sitting at my kitchen table. Can you imagine if I had not tested them first? If I had just put them in place and randomly turned them on, whenever, who knows what damage these light sets would have done. Thank heavens, I avoided a potential catastrophe. I tell you this, not to put a damper on your Christmas decorating, but to keep you diligent this holiday season. Accidents happen and you need to prepare to help prevent them. Needless to say, my hubby took the lights back to Menards and told them they were not safe. Hopefully they took them off their shelves to avoid future problems. Meanwhile, we got some new ones at Walmart that work fine.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014


We have lived here for 28 years. Since the day we moved in garbage pickup has been on a Monday, the beginning of the week. This was always convenient and we were happy with the arrangement. But things have changed. A couple weeks ago, we got a letter in the mail, telling us the pickup for trash was now going to be on Wednesdays… starting on the day before Thanksgiving. Needless to say, this ruffled a few feathers in the neighborhood because that meant we would have accumulated ten days worth of garbage, before their arrival. And because it was a holiday week,  trash being picked up in a punctual manner  was a necessity. Taking all this into account, I told my husband, they would not show. He insisted they would, and said the garbage company insisted they would be here too. I held my breath and guess who was right? Me. I called their office from 1-4 pm on Wednesday afternoon to ask where they were? All I got was a busy signal.  And then... promptly at 4:01pm a nice prerecorded message came on, telling me they had all gone home for the day. And they wished me a Happy Holiday. I left a message thanking  them for the unsightly pile of trash outside in my driveway. Needless to say, I never heard back. But the trash finally did get picked almost 2 weeks late. Have you ever had something like this happen, to ruin a celebration?   

Friday, November 28, 2014


Although I'm an avid shopper, we didn't want to brave the Black Friday crowds. So at 9:30pm on Thanksgiving evening, the husband and I... got in the van,  and headed out to the store to see what Thanksgiving Day specials we could find. Stores here were rolling out the deals starting at 6pm and 8pm. So... we thought there could be some stuff left over from those promotions. After all, the big sales extravaganza was just getting started. We also figured the crowds might have thinned out, that late in the day. We were wrong. It was a circus. My hubby chickened out, at the last minute, and opted to stay in the getaway van, outside. So I bravely ventured inside, alone. It was like a maze. It seemed like there was no way out, once you were in. People were everywhere, huffing and puffing, in a frenzied hurry. Aisles were blocked. It was hard to navigate your way around. But I remained patient, focused on my goal and looked for what I came to get. Bargains were in abundance in every department. Some things had been picked over but most were still there for the taking. However, the heater fireplace I wanted, was sold out. That disappointed me, but what are you going to?  Getting there first... to grab one... is the name of this shopping game. So... some lucky people... will be putting their feet up, enjoying it's warmth and I won't. But... this may surprise you, I'm happy for them.  I really am. Life goes on even if you lose out. Shopping is a sport. So, onward I trudged.  Then... out of the corner of my eye, I saw a Queen sized comforter with pillow shams and bed skirt. Not on my list. Price $34. I nabbed it. I can use it come spring. I did a VICTORY lap. I then called my hubby on the cellphone, reading him descriptions of things he might need. But he passed. He wants a FIT BIT or something like it. None were to be had. A moment after he hung up, though... I saw a display of SanDisk SDHC cards 16GB. Only ten were left.  I scooped up four. No need to be greedy. Leave some for someone else. In the stores here, depending where you shop, they retail for $14.98-$16.98 a piece. These were $5. Made my day. The ones I had in my camera were full. I take alot of photographs. Unfortunately, none to document my adventures shopping, because I had not yet bought new cards. Anyway... MISSION IMPOSSIBLE became MISSION COMPLETE, once I explored every square inch of that store, however, painstaking it was.  I was done shopping. Took an hour. I had survived this Turkey Day experience. I carefully wormed my way to the register to pay.  My hubby had the van ready and waiting outside.  It was toasty warm, though the snow was falling and so were the temps. The only thing left on my plate for the evening was to have a piece of pecan pie. YUM! YUM! My advice to those of you venturing out on Black Friday, next year. Have fun.

Sunday, November 23, 2014






Monday, November 17, 2014


I hate to bring up bodily functions, BUT it's a topic we all deal with, in one way or another, right? For the record, my husband and I have been known to plug up the toilet, now and then... as did our daughters, when they were growing up. But... we handily... took care of business, more times than not, with a simple plunger... instead of enlisting the help of a plumber, who would have broke the bank. So... imagine the big smile on my face when I saw this red plunger Christmas Tree at Big Lots. 

It really made my day. I feel you have to have a sense of humor in life. It's what gets you through, the good times and bad. I immediately rushed to the register with this quirky tree,  knowing it would be the perfect Christmas decoration for our hall bathroom, which is done up in a cabin motif. 

What do you think? Do humor and Christmas go together? 

Saturday, November 8, 2014


With this new cold spell hitting us... I have been thinking alot about winter. My closet and I... need a new pair of boots, for the snowy weather.  So I have been searching the internet for them. I wear a size 6w. They are hard to find.  But... finally I did. A pair of Tote's with faux fur lining. Not as high, on my leg, as I'd like... but they'll do the job, as long as we don't get two feet of snow. So I pushed the plunger and bought them. Anxious to get them home, I waited patiently for them to arrive. All of our mail comes to a PO Box, so I knew I would have to pick them up at the front vestibule in the Post Office, during business hours. There is no way this package would fit in our 6x6 inch Post Office Box. So a week passed. Nothing there. Then... one day, after the Post office had closed for the day, I went to pick up the mail. It was the only time I had available. I was stunned to see a package crammed tight in the Post Office Box. I found it hard to believe it was the boots. They'd be too big, wouldn't they?  A tight squeeze. So I struggled to pull the package out of the front of the box. It kept getting stuck. No one was there to help me, so I had to be persistent.  Eventually the package worked it's way out... with alot of patience and careful manipulation, on my part. And surprise, surprise... the package was indeed hiding the boots. I was excited to see them, but stunned they fit in that tiny space. The fact the boots were not shipped in a shoebox was the obvious reason why? That way... I had maneuvering room, when trying to break them free of the PO Box. Who does that? Not putting boots in a shoebox for delivery? Guess it worked in my favor, didn't it? I didn't have to wait to pick them up during regular Post Office business hours. Now I'm ready to face Old Man Winter. BRING ON THAT POLAR VORTEX. I'm prepared. Have you ever had something, somewhat mind boggling, happen to you?