Thursday, July 31, 2008

A wedding and a guessing game.

We are entering a season in our lives where we will be attending more weddings.
We went many years without going to one and we are filling in the calendar already for next summer; three so far.

On Saturday evening we attended the wedding of Emily and Jon.
Emma was a bridesmaid from Emily.

It was all so lovely! The weather was perfect for the outdoor reception on the top of a local health club.

Would you like to see some pictures?

(And remember, I am not a wedding photographer.)

Emma had her makeup done at the Origins counter at the Mall.

The wedding service was inside at 4:00. Jon wrote a song for Emily and a fellow musician sang it for them as a surprise to Emily. They both cried sweet tears of love.

Oh yeah. Details. The girls put these together (I think). I know they worked on something for the tables :o)
Beautiful, aren't they?


Guess who this stunning woman is?

Don't tell if you know her in person. Let's see if anyone can place the commenter with the fabulous face?

She does this a lot!


Jon and Emily. So happy!


Long time friends. The young lady on the right is going to Moody. She will be right across the hall from Emma.
Doesn't she have great style? Love that hair!!!


The woman behind the man.

Or what to do with a picture when the groom is out of focus.

Pretend you meant it that way!


"First Dance" by Misty Edwards.

I'm loving that veil in this light.


Waiting for her daddy for the father-daughter dance.

God bless you Jon and Emily.
And God speed.

God, the best maker of all marriages, Combine your hearts into one.
William Shakespeare

What a happy and holy fashion it is that those who love one another should rest on the same pillow.
~Nathaniel Hawthorne

A happy marriage is the union of two good forgivers.
~Ruth Bell Graham

Encourage one another,

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Cindy's Beauty Tips


Sis Cindy is much more foo-foo than me and I really do get a kick out of it.

I like to stand and watch her apply her Bare Essentials and
I learned something new while watching her smooth her hair with her new Velcro curlers.


And so did Emma :o)

(I think Katie was inspired too. We went out to eat last night and she wore that red vest and the blue
sunglasses. And just before bath time she was sitting with Cindy just like that, and I had to take the picture cause it was so sweet how
she was cozied up to her Auntie. It makes me so happy.)

Our shopping excursion took us to Sephora. For those of you who don't know this place, it is a store that sells cosmetics and perfume and skin care items.

Our big mall just opened a Sephora a few weeks ago and I had yet to visit.

Now, the thing about me is, I get drawn in by the infomercials with all the facial care products. I bought Victoria Principal's line and Kathie Lee's line and Murad and even Shaklee's face products.
I can't help myself.

But guess what? I usually don't take the time to use them.

So I buy things and Emma uses them.

This is especially true of lip gloss.

But let me tell you about this lip gloss Cindy uses and bought for Emma yesterday.

It's called Smashbox Intuitive O-Gloss.

It's intuitive. Just like the Mac.

The gloss is clear but when you apply it, it colors your lips to the perfect color for you.

We all tried it and it looked different and nice on each one of us.

Very fun!


I didn't buy any for myself, but I feel a strong pull to go back there and buy some!

Cindy also bought some lip plumping gloss from Bare Essentials call Buxom.
(What a name for a lip plumping gloss ;o)
She chose the color Brandy.

It's fabulous, too.

We are not so sure it works, but it tingles, just so you know it's on.

Oh! about those curlers;
Dry your hair with a hair dryer and immediately roll up the Velcro Rollers.
That's all. Leave them in for five to ten minutes and your hair is smoother and
more manageable.... well.... at least for Cindy and Emma it worked that way ;o)

Tell us about your favorite beauty product or tip!


Encourage one another,

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Family, Friends and fun, fun, fun!!!

Cindy and I had the BEST, long, visit with our childhood friends.
We lived a few houses down from one another in Elmhurst Ill.
Our parents were the very best of friends.
Our mom's had Pepsi together in the afternoons and our dads bowled each week.

We even went on vacations to Hayward Wisconsin together in the summers.

Being with them is just like being with brothers and sisters.

And just think, it's been 18 years since we have (all) been together!!!
(Kris came to Emma's graduation party last June as a big surprise and David
came to Grandma Hansen's funeral a few years back.)

Way too long!

But, oh, my goodness, what fun we had and how we laughed.

Thank you, Kris and Billy and David from coming to town to visit with us!
(and Carolyn :o)

We will never forget it. Our hearts are full!

Our old stomping grounds.

Our Aunt Dorothy lived just a few blocks down from here.
We are very happy in this neighborhood :o)

Cindy was not too sure about my excessive picture taking...

Monday morning, we had breakfast at The Original Pancake House on Bellevue Ave.
This is a great place. Original building. Cozy, classic....

Cindy likes the Dutch Baby. It is a crepe like thing served with butter, lemon, and powdered sugar.


Then we headed down Michigan Ave.

All along Michigan Ave. we found whimsical dress forms.
This one was my favorite.



Folks still trying to get their i-phones.

Walking over the Chicago River.
I loved these pretty flags.

You know where we are headed, don't you?

Millennium Park!!!


It was the perfect day for splashing in the interactive art!


The 'sculpture' doesn't always squirt.....but when it does, you should hear the squeals of delight!!!

The Bean. It is a people magnet.


Our portrait, at the Bean.

Cindy has just learned to text. It's her new favorite thing.

I love to take pictures. It's my favorite thing. Kinda.

We think Chicago is just the perfect city.

It is full of fabulous things to do and see and eat....

And the people, they are full of life and down to earth in a Midwestern way.

It's the best!

Encourage one another,

p.s. Cindy is here with us in Madison. We are still on the go and giggling our way thru the days.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Saturday, July 26, 2008



jumps in a row.

She still can't manage the rhythmical extra bounce.
But that will come.


For those of you who asked, who is Brett Favre?

He is the very beloved quaterback of the Green Bay Packers.

He has been the leader of the Pack for seventeen exciting years.

In March her tearfully retired and about a month ago he announced he wanted to come back.

The fans (80%) want him to return but the management has it's issues.

Tomorrow Brett says he is returning for training camp.

The team is not promising him the starting position.

It is all very dramatic.

The Packer fans are hanging on every word from Brett and the Packers.....

I'm afraid, it ain't gonna be pretty.


Tomorrow I am taking the train to Chicago to meet up with my sister Cindy.
Then we will come back to Wis. on Monday afternoon some time.

Patrick is working from home on Monday so he can be here with Katie.
Isn't that the sweetest thing? I'm so glad he agreed to do this for me.

Last week Katie said, "I wish daddy was a teacher, then he could be home every day in the summer."

It all makes me so thankful.



Whenever I held my newborn baby in my arms, I used to think that what I said and did to him could have an influence not only on him but on all whom he met, not only for a day or a month or a year, but for all eternity - a very challenging and exciting thought for a mother. ~Rose Kennedy

The child is God's gift to the family. Each child is created in the special image and likeness of God for greater things; to love and to be loved.
~Mother Teresa

Encourage one another,

Friday, July 25, 2008


Friday's Feast is still on hiatus. I have got to use my ole noggin' AGAIN.

How's about a Wisconsin themed feast?

1. What is your favorite cheese.

2. Do you drink beer? If so, what brand.

3. Do you own a pair of moccasins?

4. Which is your favorite Little House on the Prairie book?

5. Who will Brett Favre be playing football for this fall?

Hey! That went okay!

We may need to have guest Feast writers. In fact that's kind of a good idea.
I you feel inspired and have questions answered by a great group of peeps, email them to me
and I will post them on Fridays!


So you think you can dance.

So disappointing. Will went home.

He was by far the best dancer on the show....perhaps ever.

Mark is one of my least favorite dancers ever one the show.
He was as shocked as I was that he stayed.

It was however time for Comfort to go home.

My favorite of the night.


Jumping Rope is not for sissies.


Katie won a jump rope at the grocery store yesterday afternoon.
She asked me to teach her to jump.

Do other mothers teach their children to jump rope?
Or is it just me?

Do other 50 year old mothers find it a little jiggly to jump rope?
Or is it just me?


It was not coming easily for Miss Katie Gracie.


No easily at all.

The drama. It comes naturally.


What's left but silliness?

You know, I gave the big rah, rah, you can do it, speech.
It takes time.
Watch me.
Let's swing it together.
Two more days and you will have it.

Until she was a heap on the ground.
And she started to tear up.

But at 8:45 she called me outside to watch how she had improved!
She was very happy!
She jumped four times.

Not with nice bounces in between.
But four huge, wild, jumps.

But it was jumping rope.
And she went to bed feeling a little better about herself.

And I'm so happy about that.

Today, I hope the little bounces in between find their way.


Encourage one another,

Thursday, July 24, 2008

As you may know, I am challenged in the decorating field.

But I do love beautiful homes.

I love the pictures this blogger chooses for her Small Place Style blog.

Small place Style

Here is another source of awe and admiration for me.

The Inspired Room

Funny thing about looking at pretty homes, they don't inspire me to go change what I have as
much as they inspire me to pick up and clean!

The pretty places also inspire me to throw stuff out :o)

So that's what I will be doing for the next few days.

Cleaning and tossing.

And do you want to know what inspires me to clean and toss THE MOST?

Company's coming!

My sister Cindy is coming for a visit.


I have my work cut out for me :o)

Wish me well as I dig in.

Encourage one another,

p.s. It took me two hours to write this.

Sometimes the words just don't come and I go off on so many rabbit trails trying to make things fit.


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

For months I have been wanting to visit my sister who has returned to the Northwoods.
In the winter, I really didn't want to go in the deep snow.
Summer has flown by with activities on both of our ends....

Because of Emma's schedule Tuesday is the only day we can go anywhere.
So I called Nancy on Monday night to ask if she would like a quick visit.

The day worked for her too. So it was all set.

We left yesterday morning and drove to the top of Wisconsin.
The the land of eagles and big sparkly waters, family and memories.

Of course it was way too short.
But we crammed lots of fun into our eight hour visit.

(This is why I couldn't come see you Tammy! Although I thought of you many times.)


We took the boat to Lakeside landing for lunch.
Nancy is really wonderful with children!


This is Ted, their new pup. Ted was the perfect playmate for Katie!
They ran up and down and around and around.
Ted is the perfect dog. I kid you not.

And yes. Unbeknownst to be, they got a goldendoodle.

The dog of my dreams.


My brother in law has spent years and years being there for the girls in our family (and his). He has taught countless young people how to ride a Sea-do, how to tie up a boat, how to water ski....and in fact, he even taught me how to drive a car.

Here he is giving Emma some pointers before he lets her add Katie to the back of the machine.


There they are!

Go girls! Go!

Isn't Wisconsin beautiful?


So that's what we did.
It's a little crazy to drive that much for such a short time,
but I'm so glad we did!

Thanks for all of the great and funny comments.
You all kept me up way too late last night when I got home!

Hey! Here is a question.

Have you ever been to Wisconsin?
What town did you visit?


Encourage one another,

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I snapped this picture right after Katie's performance on Friday night.

I forgot to switch the iso over from 1600 so this picture is what you call grainy.
However, I edited it with a watercolor filter to fix it up a little.

It's still a little weird on the technical side of things.
But I love her eyes. And when you have a thousand or so pictures of your girl,
one oddly pixilated shot isn't the end of the world.

We are headed on a day trip today so I will not be around to visit.

I found some good questions on a websie called 'corsinet'. I don't know a thing about the site, but they had a nice list of questions....

Here are a few to ponder today...

14. What is the most important thing in any relationship?

23. What is the worst vacation you ever took?

25. If the statement, 'You are what you eat' was true, I would be a _______.

1. What do you believe is the greatest unsolved mystery of all?

2. Which of the seven dwarfs personifies you best – Dopey, Sneezy, Sleepy, Bashful, Grumpy, Happy, or Doc?

Have fun with those questions and I'll see you tomorrow!

Be good and encourage one another,



Monday, July 21, 2008


Colors at the Dane County Fair= Eye-popping.

fried pickles and lime cherry drink

Fried Pickles at the Dane County Fair= hot

And speaking of hot. Man was it hot.

It was 85 and humid and boy was my face red.

I wore my hair down because I was feeling ugly and tried to improve my appearance.
But it didn't help and it made me even more steaming.

I didn't have a rubber band but Katie did and she kindly gave it to her mommy.

And I don't want you to say in the comments 'you don't look ugly' cause you weren't there :o)

And anyway, I know you have those hair days, weeks, months, when your hair is just ALL WRONG.

So I have been wearing it in a pony tail. But that is even starting to look bad.

(My hair used to be my saving grace. As I have gained weight over the hair still looked pretty.
Well, something has happened in the last six months to my hair. It's gotten kind of wavy/frizzy and very difficult
to prettify.)

Today I am going to the beautician try to beautify myself.

I know it is a lot to ask.

I am asking for a hairstyle that is easy to keep and makes my face look thinner.

Wish us luck.

(And I know you folks in Arizona will chuckle. But 85 and humid is super hot to be standing in the sun at the Dane County Fair, I tell ya. Phew.)


Once we got to the fair and ate our lunch, Patrick immediately headed toward the midway.
While, I have my fears, he does not. And when I said my children didn't go on these rides, I wasn't lying.
Patrick has rarely come to the fair with us.

Now that he doesn't own a business anymore he has weekends off and can come along.

It is not always easy to take his opinions into consideration. But I try.

I've been making so many of these decisions on my own for so long.

But Katie didn't die on the it worked out okay :o)

This was the big person ride. It went forward and backward.

They liked it!

Then Katie went on two 'baby rides'; The big slide and bumblebees.

I stood in the sun and sweated.

Greek Fest

On Sunday, Lynn and her family met Emma and I at the Greek Fest.

The food was delicious and the fellowship sweet.

However, I think I will remember most that we sat in the sun and ate.

And, my oh was hot!

I am so spoiled and not at all use to suffering in the heat.

Can you tell?

We did have one really, really good laugh in the basement of the church while eating our baklava.

It had to do with cutting baklava in the proper shape.

But, I can't tell it to you because I don't have the words but believe me when I say,
it was as funny as the Post It incident.


Alright. Better go and get ready for my haircut.

You have one hour to give me a suggestion.

Remember: pretty, easy, thinner.

Encourage one another,

Because I love you and you are always so kind to me....
and because my hair will most likely not look this nice for a while...

I present to you my haircut and color.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


Someone got to go on a few rides at the fair.

Seems daddy is much nicer than mommy.

Saturday, July 19, 2008


Such a happy time for Katie.

And even a smile from her daddy!

Pretty Special.

I have never printed off one of these storyboards, but I may do this one as a sample and I
think Katie would love it.

I think it prints as a 20 x 20. Then you just frame it in a single frame.

Or knowing me, you set it on the dresser, unframed, for all time and eternity.


The Dane County Fair is the weekend.

What do you like best about Fairs?

The food, the animals, the rides, the exhibitions?

We have never let our children go on the rides, so we take a lot of fun
out of the fairs. (Well, we do let them ride in a circle on the ponies.)

I have this fear of that clackity, rickety rides.

Perhaps we can let her try one of the "games".

Katie says she likes the kittens and chickies and horses.

Um. I like the food and the animals and the atmosphere.

How about you?


One month from tomorrow and Emma goes away to college.

So fast. It all goes so fast.

Encourage one another,

Friday, July 18, 2008


In case you were wondering if Katie enjoyed the performance tonight...

Oh dear, the Fridays Feast is not up yet.

I may have to think of questions on my own today.

think, think, think.....

Which Winnie the Pooh character do you relate to?
Do you see yourself as other see you?
How old are you anyway?
Do you think it's weird that I am so old?
I really do feel old compared to all the whippersnappers I meet on the Internet.
Oh! That's not a question.
Have you read anything spectacular this summer?

There. The Friday Five.


Aw! Bad news on So You Think You Can Dance....

Of the bottom four dancers. The wrong two went home.
Gev and Kharington were given the old heave ho last night.

They are both super talented.

The two dancers that squeezed by...not so much.

Ah well. It's my fault. I don't vote.

Next week Mark and Comfort will go.

I wish the judges had the final say. But they don't. Boo.


Last night Katie went outside at 8:15 to chase fireflies.

I tried to take gorgeous, stunning pictures of my sprite happily chasing the bugs....

This is what I was thinking....


The search.


Look a firefly.

This whole set of pictures was such a mess. Someone asked on Ree's site if I ever took bad pictures.

Why, yes. I do.

Aileen Fisher

Firefly, firefly in the night,
when you flash your twinkly light,
do you know as you flit by
you're a beetle, not a fly?

Firefly, firefly in the dark,
do you know you have no spark,
not a spark of fire at all . . .
just a light that's cool and small?

Firefly, firefly, please come by
underneath the darkened sky,
blinking as you flit along . . .
even if you're name is wrong.


Katie's performance is tonight.
Should be super-fun!

Encourage one another,

Remember to answer those fabulous five questions.