It’s Warm Inside

I love Autumn. It’s my favorite time of year. I struggle with winter. Granted, I live in Minnesota so that’s part of life but that doesn’t mean I like it much. It’s bearable. On the up- side we have a beautiful fireplace that cost us some blood, sweat and tears and it is now cold enough to enjoy it. We had a few days here that really belonged in January – they somehow ended up in November.

It’s hard not to love that smell – a roaring fire made of dried hardwood. That smell carries many memories for me. Lots of reflection. I grew up in a home with a wood burning fireplace. Not only does it warm the room it also warms the heart.

This will be an enjoyable feature for many years to come. Bring it on Mother Nature. We’re ready.

The Hunt is Over

I took firearms safety when I was 12 years old and have been coming to north central Minnesota to hunt well over 20 years.

It was so weird this year to not travel. I literally pulled out the tub of orange clothes the night before the opener. No packing the car. No planning to take off work or school early. I got a deer on day 1 so that changed up some plans. I had intended on taking off a few hours early later in the week but instead of hunting was cooking and butchering. By the time Thursday rolled around we were 7 of 10 with three full days to go. We were all filled out by 8:30 am Saturday morning. It was the best year we have ever had hunting. The most my dad could ever remember getting on any given year was six deer. The meat will be share across six families. It was a good feeling.

As the seasons change we are remembering again why we made the move. I love the serenity and the scenery. The camaraderie is always nice. We truly appreciate time with our friends when they make the trip up the visit. The annual Saturday pizza gathering at the neighbors was A LOT shorter drive this year!

Make A Difference

The seasons have changed. We had a week of Indian Summer and now winter is closing in. The first snow appeared this past week and made things very messy. We don’t have our wood cut for the fireplace but we will get there. Our building is up. It isn’t fully enclosed but there are still things we can do to keep it moving forward. I think the windows and walk door arrive today. Yesterday was #MakeADifferenceDay and my dad and husband spent the day helping on of the neighbors gather up their hay bales and moving them so they in turn could help their dad with a water pipe issue. That’s the great thing about living in the Midwest – people helping people. My job was the food, something I love.  It probably helps that I love my kitchen and don’t mind spending time there. This afternoon we will regroup and run all our weekend errands. Time to get ready for the workweek. Things are never done but there is always ‘later’. 

Mother Nature, Please…

So we started the home build project 10 weeks late thanks to the appraiser. We recovered. The shop project started almost a year late for the same reason. Then it rained. Then it rained some more. The next thing you know you have had more than 12″ in 3 weeks. After 4 weeks of no action we finally got concrete poured, block laid and walls assembled to go up. There it sits. Today it rained. We have puddles everywhere and a soggy, muddy mess. I can hear the thunder going again so we will be getting more overnight and into tomorrow. It makes it very hard to get anything accomplished outside. I would like the sun to shine. 

Distracted

I had been wanting to print photos to canvas for some time. I continually put it off cuz it’s one of those expenses that can wait. A few weeks ago I got a coupon for 80% off and free shipping and decided maybe now is the time. I’ve been holding off doing any decorating other than existing pieces we already had so adding family photos to the walls seemed fitting. 

I knew the package was coming last week from the tracking information but time got away from me. Next thing you know the delivery confirmation said “yesterday”.  What?!  After pulling in after work I immediately went to the front door and retrieved my package. Exciting! I was excited. 

Needless to say I got nothing else accomplished that night. I spent the entire time trying to figure out where each picture was going, measuring and hanging prints. It’s funny how certain things can consume your mind. Our house is looking more and more like a home everyday. 

Stand Tall

I am sure you can relate to this statement. “There are days when you can really feel the stress on your body.”

I am working hard at drinking more water and less coffee on a daily basis. I also set a goal of 10,000 steps at least three days a week. Sometimes that goal is challenging because my day job is primarily sedentary. After a few months into my new job I got a standing work surface. I had the same one at my previous company and loved it. My struggle has been that I get so busy at my computer or coming and going from meetings that I forget to put it up…and I am feeling the effects. 

Stress comes in all forms. I often operate at a high rate of speed. Demands for my time and attention have me juggling many balls in the air at once. I’m just hoping I don’t drop one. Friday is got in a few holes of golf. I was “checked out” for a short period of time. I felt rejuvenated. Today, not so much. I feel it in my neck and shoulders. It’s pulling hard. I am doing my best to stand up straight and tall and have to remind myself often.  I’d hate to get to a place when I can’t weather the storm. 

Say Cheese

Yesterday included one of those activities I really dread, having my picture taken. It’s a small town so the photographer’s studio was three towns over, about a 30 minute drive. On the way over and back I was trying to make mental notes about locations of things I might want to research or check out later. The ladies at the office made a point to say that this town has a Walmart (which I interpreted as “it is large enough to have a…”). A theme I have noted as I drive north and back home every week is that every other town seems to have a Dairy Queen. Down here every other town has a McDonalds. I guess you are a big town if you have both. 

The studio was on Main Street. It is a cute area. In addition to the studio, they have a hardware store, a shoe store, a gift store, a cafe, a pizza place, a bank, a formal wear store and a jewelry store all on the main drag. It was like a step back in time. You have to cross the railroad tracks to get there. Kind of makes you wonder if you were to get stopped for a train would you just pull over and do some shopping? 

The lady at the studio was very nice and professional. After I was done I explored about a four block radius and hit the McDonalds drive through for some coffee before returning to the office. 

I still didn’t like my picture very much but I never do.