A mix of photography, recipes, personal thoughts, faith, and lots of family stuff, but not necessarily in that order.

Monday, July 10, 2017

The calm before the storm...

My post title says.... the calm before the storm. 
Now you may think that's a bad thing (the storm) but we are looking forward to it.

When Rick and I are at the cabin alone we love the peace and tranquility it brings to our lives.  
But nothing beats the  thunder of the storm when all the kids and grandkids come . 
It's a GOOD thunder, the kind that echo's throughout the cabin and down by the lake. 
Noise and motion all around, it's just so fun,!
We don't even have to take shelter, It's what we've dreamed of....
Family time at the cabin, coming this week...cant wait!
Stay tuned, for future post of all the fun!

So Rick and I are at the cabin for almost 2 weeks. 
We are having a good time, a little rest, a little work and a whole lot of together time.
 I was trying to cast my line around the boat lift, and the lure flew right into the canvas, oops
I knew just the guy who would be able to get it out

When I'm sitting out on the deck I look up to the sky and this is what I see
These giant Jack pines are all around....love them.

 Our boat ride last night was sooooo peaceful, the lake was quiet, 
like glass... all 8 miles of it!
 I like to sit up front, with nothing to block my view!
Loon watching

Some dock work.. he loves having him some projects.

 Night view from our dining room....not too shabby
 He changes my lures for me...and takes my fish off the line. 
I could do it But I wouldn't want to steal his joy!
He's a good man!

and then this..... 
We are thankful, blessed and grateful for this cabin and all it is to us. 
Two families have enjoyed it as well already this year. 
We love that we can share our "peace" of Heaven Up North with friends and family.

Now, a little more work, then a little rest...
"Before the storm", that's predicted to start tomorrow afternoon :)

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Our little firecracker...

Our little "firecracker" is 3
 3 years ago on July 4th I was pacing around my parents yard waiting for the phone call...
Our Daughter-in-love was in labor, expecting their 1st child, our 3rd grandchild. 
We didnt know the gender and neither did my Son Brice and his wife... 
they wanted it to be a surprise.

 She arrived on July 4th, 2014
There was an instant love for this little girl!

Scarlett is amazing, she walks to the beat of her own drum. 
Nothing seems to phase her, she is confident and adventurous!

She is beautiful, smart, curious, silly, happy, polite and loving
Pure Sweetness 

She loves her grandpa 

and is so silly with grandma....
love her face here as she tries to get away

We love you Scarlett and are excited to watch you grow, but don't grow too fast!
 We hope you will always be your little free-spirit self, full of wonder and joy!!!
Happy Birthday sweet girl

Thursday, June 29, 2017

My photo won....

Just for the heck of it I decided to enter a small town photo contest this spring.
I found the contest on the Park Rapids web page. 
Park Rapids is our other town, about 4 1/2 hours from Rochester, 
it's where we spend a lot of time in the summer at our cabin up north.
To my surprise, I was chosen as the winner for one of the three categories....."Lake Scenes" 
We three winners had our photo taken and publish on the Park Rapids website.

 "Reflections of a morning fog"
 I snapped this shot one day early last spring when the fog was still on the lake, 
the cloud pattern was so beautiful.

 Max Bailey Photography of Park Rapids sponsors the contest and awards a professionally finished, 11X14-inch mounted picture of the winning photograph in each of three categories
Here's me showing off my prize. 

Before the contest winners had been announced, 
I had it developed on a 16 X 20 canvas which hangs in the "green bedroom" at the cabin.

My first Photo contest entry... I kind of like this.
There may be more entries in the future for this girl.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

When anguish falls in your lap...

This is not a post of complaint or of whoa-is me, but a post that comes form the heart of grieving grandma, grief is not only for times of death, it also strikes in times of tragedy and illness and when what was normal is taken away and replaced with something that is scary, confusing
and may never go away.... and it involves someone who is part of my heart.

1 year old today my Grandson's life changed forever.
Last year several weeks after diagnosis.
That life change trickled down to his parents, sister, and extended family.
Type 1 diabetes happens to innocence, and there is nothing you can do to
 prevent it or heal it, although
I do believe in a God of miracles and I'm hopeful for
a cure through the research being done for T1 diabetes.
* * * * * * * *
Afflictions and heartbreaks are different for Everyone.
When all seems hopeless, when anguish falls in your lap, what's left?

One year ago in a small ER in Northern Minnesota....
When struck with sudden tragedy... anger, anxiety, sadness and disbelief settle in around and a storm begins to brew. It's a slow moving storm, the kind that rumbles intermittently in the background.
That sound is fading and peace is starting to work its way back into my soul.
It's been a year since his diagnosis, but I'm still caught off guard when panic sneaks up on me and
out of no where comes a sudden audible gasp followed by sobs of heartache?
I find myself asking why? "Why did sweet little Carson get such a horrible disease"?
After all, I've been praying since before he was born for God to keep him safe and
 protect him from horrible accidents and diseases!
Yes, those have always been my exact words,
 I prayed this everyday for all my grandchildren.

I know it's ok to ask God why? He wants us to come to Him with our questions,
but I quickly ask God for something else,
 "Please Lord, remove the power of darkness from my surroundings because
 I believe he (the evil one) is stirring up my delicate grandma heart
and causing me to question your goodness".
As I pray calmness settles in and the sobs become praise in knowing that God is good.
 I have some work to do, but I'm getting there.
At first, when I was so angry, my questions was, "well now what do I pray for"?
I'm afraid to pray... the very thing I prayed not to happen... happened, ugh!
But as my senses start to come back to me I am reminded that
God did not promise a trouble-free life here on earth,
but He promises to be with us through our heartache.
He is right beside us, reminding us that He loves us and will never leave us, and I know
most of all he loves Carson.

For several months I was afraid to pray for my grand babies,
or to ask God for much of any thing, but over time I have changed my tune.
Something changed as the Holy Spirit began to patch my grandma heart. I now speak prayers of thanksgiving more so than prayers of "here's what you can do God"

As I've learned more about the awful effects that Type1 Diabetes can have on the
  human body, I now thank God that Carson ONLY has Diabetes,
sounds weird I know, but I am thankful that is all he has...
Type1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that is sometimes accompanied by many other illnesses such as thyroid & Celiacs disease. We won't even talk about the havoc this disease can have on the major organs the body, ugh. Instead I thank the Lord that we have Carson, he is my hero!
He is such an amazing little boy that is happy and thriving!
But on that note, it remains a scary thing for him and that's a hard thing to see.
He doesn't like it, he knows he has it, but he's barely 5 and easily distractible.
This little boy has had to endure pain from multiple pokes, feeling yucky from highs and lows and has legitimate worries about pumps things attached to him.
It's all very scary, especially for a little one!
His mamma, changing pump settings on a particularly "low day".
Despite Type 1 diabetes, and all that goes with it....
 Carson is a perfect boy in every way!

He is blessed to have a sweet momma and daddy to reassured him, care for him and face this heartache head on. This is a relentless disease but Chris and Brie are diligent in doing what is best for Carson and I love them for that.  I am thankful for Caron's family, he has the best mom, dad and sister, and we feel blessed to live close enough to be part of this little guys life. Rick and I are grateful that Brianna & Chris trust us to keep him with us for hours at a time. We are reading and learning about Type 1 diabetes, there's a lot to know and try and understand.
We are on our 2nd book, Think like a Pancreas by Gary Scheiner who is a Type1 diabetic himself.

This last year has been a rollercoaster for sure...just ask Carson and his parents!
Never in my life did I think I would have to ever poke my grandbabies fingers to get blood to check his glucose level, but he makes it easier when he says, "It didn't even hurt Grandma".
He is so brave, and so strong and so wonderful,
Carson is our hero, and I will never stop praying for
God's grace and peace over this sweet boy and his family.

 I thank God daily for His patience with me as I still try to make sense of all this.
When I start to tumble, and that audible sob slips from the back of my throat, I let it come, but only for a moment as I quickly direct my thoughts to my stronghold and feel His peace again...
It's then that I'm reminded of His love and promises,
Thank you Lord for this beautiful gift, our amazing grandson,
Sweet Carson!
God will do great things with this little boy,
 "and we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him"
Romans 8:28
So thankful for this little guy and all that he is teaching me through it all.

God is good in all Days!
He is the Lord of misery and the Lord of celebration, and He uses both to accomplish His will.
In all eternity this life is but a split second, but if even for a second,
I thank God for all that He is and all that He has done and will continue to do for us.
Dear Lord, help me to trust you until the time when I can see from your perspective.

God is good....all the time.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Summer?...or fall?

Now don't be hatin'.... 

I know it's not anywhere close to "fall", but today... it feels like it.

I just love love love this weather!
Sitting out on the deck sipping on coffee, and feeling that cool breeze!
Listening to the leaves of the quaking aspen tree...it's a beautiful sound!
Wearing a sweater in June, but no socks!
That Vibrant blue sky against the pinks and greens  #nofilterneeded

I'm enjoying this lovely morning, can you tell?
Heading up to the lake this weekend to enjoy some more of this.... up there :)

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

We kept busy this weekend

It was a fun weekend filled with family and lots of fun.
Saturday was Carson's 5th birthday party,
it was a beautiful day so of course the guys played a little basketball out in the driveway. 
Carson is playing with his two uncles and dad... He held his own.
It's like Christmas in June. 
Carson's so easy to buy for, some of his favorite things are, 
legos, games, cars, tracks and magnet building sets. 

He even got a "cars" cake.

Little Lew was getting sleepy so Grandpa Rick swang him to sleep.
Lew likes to sleep with his hand sunder his head....love this!

 My daughter-in-love Jenny visiting with Rick's mom. 
All 4 of the great grandparents made it to the party. 

Girl cousins Scarlett and Audrey
*  *  *  *  *  *
On Sunday the troops all came to our house for dinner and fun.
It's not often we get everyone here on Father's Day so it was extra special for Rick.

We had a deck full!

The kids like playing with chalk in the driveway

Little Scarlett decided to walk in the chalk drawings
She's checking out her foot full of blueish gray chalk dust
 "Look Grandma, I'm Elsa"
Elsa is the snow princess on the Disney movie "Frozen"

 Uncle Brice entertaining the littles on the swing set
This is the original swing set we bought for our kids 30 years ago from Sears,

 My heart!

Just chilling' in the driveway watching the littles
My son-in-love, Chris and daughter Brianna holding little Lewin.

 A Father and his kids.... love these four!
 Rolling down the hill.... Wish you could hear the giggles, there were lot's of them  :)