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

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Can never get enough of them...

Our grands from the cities had an extended stay with us recently, three nights to be exact. 
It was also the first time for little Lewin all by himself without mom & dad.
We loved every minute of it!
Grandma and Scarlett had a little date to ourselves, which included a shopping trip to target.
Princess cowboy boots and frilly headbands were purchased.
Someone was very excited!

We also stopped for an ice cream cone at Flapdoodles.

I loved having them in my lap
 I read extra slow to savor this closeness
Early morning snuggles....we don't mind.

Uncle Gavin loves to hang out with all his nieces and nephews.

 Sunday morning the 4 grands congregated in a corner after church.

 During nap time for Lewin, Brianna and I took the other 3 to "Air Insanity",
 a trampoline park in Rochester. A lot of jumping and climbing was done.
Carson is hanging on for dear life.

 Monday we decided that it would be a good day to visit great-grandparents.
 My dad and Lewin
Getting a cookie from great-grandma Mary (my mom) 
Then off to the nursing home to visit Great-grandma Joanne and GG Wayne 
Scarlett's holding hands with grandma.

This sweet boy is growing up fast...already 2 and looking like his daddy (from the nose up)

It's always a little sad after we take them home and come back to a quiet house.
 A house with remnants of childrens play. 
We leave it for a while, because I like to be reminded!

...anyone else?

Friday, February 08, 2019

When snow falls...nature listens

The devotional I read this morning was just for me!

As an amateur /hobbyist photographer,
 I love to capture the beauty of nature, people and whatever catches my eye.
 I have been told I have an "eye" for photography.

I tend to get caught up in Winters beauty. 
What some call brutal cold, I call pure and fresh...exhilarating!
I love to be out in the winter, and my camera usually accompanies me, 
but sometimes the photo doesn't turn out the way I see it,
 it can frustrate me that I don't get to share the beauty that I am seeing through my lens.

My devotional this morning was about a photographer that has the same 
winter passion in photography as I do, and the same frustrations when we can't seem
 to capture the beauty that's in front of us to look the same in a photo.

Instead of frustration the author reminds me to
 Breathe. Savor. Be.
At that moment, what I am seeing through my lens may be for me alone,
  and maybe it's only for right now. 
It's at this time that I need to memorize the details in my head and heart. 
To enjoy the moment and be still.

Be still and know that I am God Psalm 46:10

 I dug into my Archive of winter photo's and came up with a few to share 
 Who else appreciates being in the elements of winter
I don't know if I like the contrast of the hoarfrost against the blue sky... 
or the monotone white on gray (with a pop of color)

  It's just all beautiful to me.

There's just something about barns in the winter

For those who are already tired of winter...... 
here's a little hope in what's to come!

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

A drive to remember....

After a fun filled extended weekend with our grand babies from the cities it was time to 
take them home to their mommy and daddy. 

Yesterday (Tuesday) was the day we had promised to return them..... 
We were watching the weather knowing it would be snowing by early afternoon. 
The snow started a bit earlier and the traffic slowed as we got closer to my son's home. 
(We were glad to have the littles home before the big storm).
We safely returned our precious grandchildren, had a quick visit with their mommy and said our goodbyes knowing we had a snowy drive back home.
 The photo's really don't show the visual difficulty as we headed back to Rochester
 The wipers were clogged with ice and Rick was having a difficult time seeing, 
since my side was clearer, I verbally steered him, "a little more to the right" please  :)
As you can see many cars were heading north,  the cars on the far right were pulled over to try and clear their windshields. We chose not to stop for fear of being hit from behind.

We followed this semi-trick for a long time.
 Traffic was single file because the edges of the road were invisible.  
We figured if the truck went in the ditch ( like his friend on the left) we would just veer the other way.

We counted 5 semi trucks in the ditch, and many cars. 
Not because it was slippery but I believe it was because of impatience... they were trying to pass the single lane of traffic and the cars/trucks were pulled off the side of the road by deep snow. 
We chose to drive smart and and stay single file.
So that's our snow adventure of the day....
Lesson to share:  Stay in single file just like they taught us in kindergarten  :)

Keeping the focus on Me in a Non- selfish way.

A good read for married couples, BOTH Men and women! 
Selfishness in marriage is a hard thing to admit to myself, but I won't lie I can be pretty selfish. 
I'm thankful for a husband who doesn't point out my weakness but instead 
gives me grace and love through his selfless and gracious personality.
Click on the link below, it's a good read!

"Prayer is the difference between the best I can do and the best God can do. Prayer softens hearts, downloads wisdom, develops patience, exposes fear, challenges our thinking, and points us to the ultimate covenantal relationship with the One who loves us in the purest, most self-sacrificing way".

Monday, January 28, 2019

Finally and it only took till the end of January

 We got out predicted snow and I am thrilled.

 Looking at the 7 inches of fresh fallen snow from my living room window

 Rick and I worked on clearing the driveway this morning. 
The temperatures were in the single digits, but it still felt refreshing and calm

The steps were my project

I think we have enough shovels....ha ha

Then this guy came by.... they were working overtime to clear the street for us
Thanks to all the plow guys!

 I decided I needed a little walk after clearing snow, 
so I hoofed it on the cleared walking path to my favorite out-building
it felt good to be out and about.
 You've seen it before... here it is again

Just a close up of snow covered  pines
I will never tire of winters beauty!

 Just as I will never tire of the view from our cabin windows in the spring, summer and fall. 
Gods' beauty comes with all the seasons  :)

Saturday, January 26, 2019

MAYBE.....Just maybe

 After lasts weeks big hype about all the snow....blah blah blah, 
 I was pretty disappointed when Rochester got none.

With that being said, 
I'm a little hesitant to get all excited about the snowfall forecasted for Rochester starting tomorrow.

As you can see I have marked up the map on this model that shows 12 inches right over Rochester.
As most of you know I love winter, snow and all the beauty it brings!
I would be thrilled to get a foot of snow, after all it is Minnesota and in Minnesota we get "Winter".

To appreciate the beauty of a snowfall
it is necessary to stand out in the cold.  ~author unknown
photo file 2014
Not much can keep me from a winter photo opportunity. 
A few years ago I ventured out during this blizzard. 
The photo shows detail of a country road with drifting and blowing snow in every direction. 
*When I look at this photo, I see beauty and the energy of nature.
 I can hear the roar of the wind

I realize that not everyone is a fan of winter, just like not everyone is a fan of summer, spring or fall. But I try to see the beauty in every season, even summer.... my least favorite season.

We have a winter storm on the way for SE Minnesota, but I'm cautiously optimistic.
 It is predicted that Sunday into Monday will bring 9-12" of snow. 
Windchills expected to be in the -20's and temperatures are expected to be 
as low as -26 on Tuesday & Wednesday. 
It sounds like a good old Minnesota blizzard..... it's been awhile
I've been waiting!
Be safe to those who have to travel!

Wednesday, January 09, 2019

My heart may just burst...

This is only one of the million reasons I love this guy.....
The love and interaction he has with his grandkids is so amazing, 
(sorry to be so sappy, but it melts my heart)

Rick is a "get-on-the-floor" and play, tickle, throw them up in the air, 
cuddling, and silly kind of grandpa.
Notice the blur in this photo...it's because of the crazy tickling going on here
Oh...and those little happy faces

 His unconventional holds....
 My heart....
 and then this..... This is one way he puts the babies to sleep  :)

He gets right down to their level....
and takes every opportunity to "be there"
sometimes it's more subdue and sweet
just playing.

 ...and sometimes it's about to get wild
One of their favorite things to do at the lake
Oh the joy! 

I never want them to grow up
I still hear the giggles from this day
 One on one
Reading books, during sleep overs, which sometimes precedes the pillow fights. 
Oh my heart!!! 

Why does he get all the snuggles?????

Grandparenting has changed over the generations. 
Rick and I were talking the other day about our grandparents and we had the same thoughts. 
The adults talked and the kids played. Can anyone of our generation relate?

We knew our grandparents loved us, but the one-on-one interaction wasn't that common. 
I remember a few times my Grandpa Erickson played "catch" with us, and I remember a few hugs from grandma. At my Grandma Thomas's, Grandma was just grandma, but she always had homemade donuts for us. The farm was the best... lots of exploring and probably getting into things we shouldn't of, but we survived.

I love the interaction we have with our grandkids and I wouldn't want it any other way. 
I hope they remember the One-on-one times we we played with them, the sleep overs and all the baking and play-doh making. I hope they remember growing-up at the cabin, and all the fun memories with grandpa and grandma.
But most of all....I hope they remember that they were loved...

My heart may just Burst......