Saturday, April 15, 2017

Broken record...

Aw, I appreciate all of your congratulations and sharing my joy at the defeat of the bedbugs, but I've now been back at my kids since Thursday. The "few bedbugs" just kept on biting and I wasn't going to hang around and get more bites. With multiple bites around my neck I was going bonkers with itching and just feeling yucky. SO, here I am again. I'm thinking it might be time to look for another apartment. The problem may get cleared up in the future, but I can't be a guinea pig any more and I want to find a solution so my kids can have their life back. They are being so good to me and don't act like I'm a bother, but I feel like it anyway. I'll keep you posted.

Faye, you asked how I keep from bringing the bedbugs to my kid's house. I've tried very hard to make sure all the clothing and things I bring over are clean or have been heat treated. There's no way to be 100% sure, but I do the best I can. These critters seem almost demonic in their ability to survive! (Well, not ALMOST. They're just another example of Satan's hold on this planet.) If I move I'll probably leave behind my bed, couch and recliner. I'll just be careful with everything else. I'm not going to drive myself crazy over-thinking things because, believe me, I'm capable of doing that, lol.

Anyway, I've worked one day at the tree nursery. It's rather repetitive, tedious work. I already knew that, but 8 hours of that kind of thing really brings it home. I plan to keep going. It's tough on the back muscles but hopefully they will get stronger as I go. I've missed two days being sick, but I hope by Monday I'll be feeling better. I think I'll try wearing a face mask while working because there's so much dust and pollen flying around as we work.

I'm so thankful to the Lord for providing family to help and to take me in. I'm so blessed to have a roof over my head and family to love. Besides my family here, all of my kids and step-dad have been giving me support and suggestions. It seems like in the last few months I've had only a few days that I've really felt well. It's either been bug bites or the latest wave of sickness. Thanks everyone, for lending an ear and being so kind.

Happy Easter to all! He is risen!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

I'm back home!

Hello, all! I'm back in my apartment after about 3 WEEKS living with my daughter and her family. They are such troopers and saints to put up with me that long!

The exterminators came last Friday (April 7) and I moved back in that evening. I have a few new bedbug bites, but they tell me that's normal. There will be a few bugs that live for a while. They will come and re-inspect the place in 3 weeks. I hope this is it for the bugs!

I enjoyed the time with my family, though all of that youthful exuberance can be taxing when you're not used to it 24/7, lol. Two year old Adele is going through a phase of being moody, so she was the main challenge. I also got strep while I was there, and, of course, you don't know you're contagious until it's too late. A couple of the girls got sick later, though not with strep, thank goodness. Audrey missed four days of kindergarten, but her teacher has also missed some days being sick. It seems this year is particularly bad for folks getting sick. Are you guys getting that?

But I do love those kiddos...
I took Hazel's picture...

...and then she took mine!

Adele on the new bike/scooter she got for her birthday.

Audrey home from school sick.

Bouncy little Sullivan, aka Bubba.

And here's my baby holding her baby.
As you can see from the photo of Micah and baby Sully above, things haven't greened up yet in our neck of the northern Minnesota woods. We do have a tinge of green grass and some buds. I think a little rain and some sunny days will cause all to bust out in greenery very quickly. Birdies are finally coming to visit my feeder again. I've seen blue jays, a robin and a purple finch, along with various sparrow types this morning.

Here's my high-tech bird feeding system...
Yup, it's a shoe tray. I can get by with this because I'm on the second floor and squirrels can't get to my balcony, lol. I also have a hanging bird feeder right above it for the shy birds. I'm still deciding on whether I want to bother with a hummingbird feeder. It's more stressful than pleasant to watch them fight over it, and they totally ignore the flowers. Speaking of which, I'll soon be emptying the flower pots you see above.

I used a sheep manure mixture in my pots last year. Just trying to be different, I think. Many of my plants turned yellow. So, this year I'll try something else. Potting soil? Topsoil? What do you guys recommend for containers? I'm going to stick with some simple annuals. I do use Miracle Grow, but I'm probably not consistent enough with it.

I brought home a couple of thrift store items this week. A little patio table...
...and a little chair which I thought would be good for doing chair yoga. My other chair has arms on it and doesn't work so well for the yoga.
I've finally begun walking on the trail near my apartment. I have one route that is 2.2 miles long and another that's 2.4 miles. I'm alternating and walking every other day. I hope to do some yoga and small weights on the other days. I'll also find some other good walks around town. I like to have some variety.

Otherwise, I'm trying to catch up on some ATC swaps. My new one-month-long job starts tomorrow. I'll let you know how that goes.

I don't know about you all, but I don't know how anyone does this thing called life without Jesus. He is our only real hope and the only thing that makes it all worthwhile. Yes, our kids and family are so precious, but without Him we would have no hope to share with these loved ones. I'm so thankful for Him and I have to keep my eyes on Him when everything seems to be going wrong. Keep your eyes focused on Him and keep your thoughts on things above. Satan will try to pull you down with everything he can think of, but don't listen to him. God is good and faithful. Keep on following Him!

It may not be Easter yet, but He's already risen! Woo hoo!

Love y'all! Shalom to all!

Monday, March 27, 2017

No rent refund...

Sorry, I should just keep this to myself, but I'm so angry!

My landlord says that to be "uninhabitable" there has to be storm, fire or earthquake damage. He apologized for the one day of inconvenience next Thursday when the exterminator comes. I informed him that I've already been living with my daughter for 7 days because I couldn't endure the bug bites, which I'm allergic to. I told him I call that uninhabitable, and I'm paying for an apartment I can't live in. I think he's going to slither out of this.

Thanks for listening to my ranting and raving. You guys are swell!

I hope to get my "shalom" back. I'm letting this get to me too much.
Love y'all! :)

Wish I knew who painted this. Can't read the signature! :)

Sunday, March 26, 2017

The bedbug drama...

Thanks to all of you who supported me in taking some action concerning the beg bug situation.

Sandra, your reply was extensive, and I wanted to let you know that I agree with you 100% on all of your recommendations. I never went to the clinic, I just toughed it out and used witch hazel and Benadryl ointment, which doesn't help a lot. I actually stayed in the apartment for over a week getting bitten because I expected it to get taken care of speedily, but went to my daughter's when I realized that wasn't happening. I hope I don't need "proof" of my allergies from a doctor. Like it's been said, even an infestation of these critters makes the place uninhabitable, whether a person is allergic or not.

I half expect to have the same experience you did. I will request a refund of rent and my neighbors won't and they'll be wondering why I got a break. Of course, they don't need to know if I don't mention it. But I'll probably advise them to do the same thing.

I've been enjoying my time being part of my kids' household. I think Micah has enjoyed some grown-up company and help with the housework and kids. I'll find out tomorrow how much longer I'll need to be out of the apartment.

Anyone know why Blogger changed the uploading thing for pictures? I'm not given the option of uploading them from my computer, which is the only way I can upload them! Life...why do things keep changing?

Well, I'll talk to you later.
Shalom to all and have a great week! :)

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Quick update...

Thanks so much, everyone, for your prayers and sympathy! God is good and changes are coming about.

My son, Josh, is recovering. The virus he has makes it difficult to keep food down, but he says he's praying for healing and an appetite for Power-ade. His Facebook posts show that his sense of humor is still going strong!

My building manager said that an exterminator will be coming on Monday to do an inspection and decide how to handle the bedbugs. I'm thinking of asking my landlord for reimbursement for the time that my apartment was uninhabitable. Everyone else in the building is staying in their apartments, so I must be the only one having an allergic reaction to them. Still, even without the allergy, people shouldn't have to live in infested apartments. So, it looks like I'll be camping with my kids for a while longer. We're managing pretty well and I'm trying to be helpful. :)

My son-in-law just learned of an interesting job opportunity today, and he is planning to look into it. It would be working at a place that constructs prefab houses and they also build log houses, so he might get an opportunity to do some stone masonry on some of those projects. It is close to his present pay and good benefits. He should be able to advance quickly. God is opening doors to better things!

Thanks again for your prayers!
Shalom to all!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Life is being crazy...

So much uproar in our lives right now, but the Lord knows how to lead us, and craziness can sometimes lead to great adventures!

First of all, I've spent the last couple of nights at my daughter Micah's house, along with her hubby Adam and the four grandkids. They live in a single-wide trailer house, so things are cozy and boisterous to say the least! I will be staying as long as necessary until my landlord does a thorough job of ridding my apartment building of bedbugs. Yes, they're back again! The last invasion was in November and I believe only my apartment was treated at that time. This time around they checked everyone's apartments and found at least two that were so heavily infested that the pest control guy didn't even want to enter them! This is a one hundred year old building so it will take some doing to kill off all of the little boogers. Finally, they should be using a heat treatment, which is much more effective than just pesticides. It will be two weeks ago on Friday that I got bitten for the first time. I was  hoping it was just a random spider bite, but more followed. I'm allergic to these little beasts and after receiving 25 or so bites I couldn't hang around. I felt kind of sick for some days, but now the itching is finally fading away and I'm much better. If I didn't like my Nevis location so much I might go in search of another place to live, but I want to be close to Micah and the family. Hopefully things will be taken care of soon. Hazel and Audrey are sharing the top bunk in their bedroom and I'm sleeping on the bottom one. It's working well, and I'm able to visit with Micah and help her with the kids a bit. Tonight they've all gone to AWANA and I stayed home to relax and rest up from all of the exuberance, lol.

In other news, I heard that my son Josh was in the hospital receiving IVs and getting x-rays. Apparently he's been battling one of the tough bugs that have been sweeping across the country. He got sick yesterday while getting out of his car and passed out, face-first on the driveway. He received some bruises and abrasions to his head, but he is okay. They've kept him in the hospital to rehydrate him. He's been working a full-time job and doing school more than full-time, finishing up his masters and doing an accounting course at the same time. I think he's getting run down. Hopefully he will take this as a sign that he needs to look after himself better. He's trying so hard to take care of his family.

Thirdly, my son-in-law, Adam, has been having problems with his boss not getting tax documents to his employees. The boss hasn't been taking care of book work and paychecks as he ought to and after a couple of months of promising to fix things and get the proper W2's to everyone, he still hasn't come through. Besides that paychecks sometimes won't cash the first time through. My son-in-law is at the point of walking out and finding new work. This is a big step for a family with four little ones, but he seriously doesn't think he can continue under the present conditions. This employer has a long history of doing business this way. I'm not sure if he's just irresponsible, lazy...or what. If you met him you would think he was just the nicest Christian man, but the way he treats his workers is terrible. And my son-in-law works very hard as a stone mason. Adam is visiting with an accountant and some family members who might be able to help him decide how to move on from here.

So, we're dealing with things one day at a time, and I'm so glad the Lord is with us no matter where we go.

On a lighter note I wanted to show off my new coffee maker. My Keurig expired a while back, and to tell you the truth, I never drink more than one cup of coffee per day. So, I bought a pack of small coffee filters and found that they fit perfectly in this vintage flour sifter, which in turn fit perfectly in one of my mugs. Voila! Pour hot water onto the coffee grounds and it makes a pretty fine cup o' joe! I had been thinking of buying a Melitta one cup coffee maker, but, heck, this was a lot cheaper! :)
Below is my latest 5"x7" canvas for the March Canvas swap. The gal I painted it for loves Irish Wolfhounds, so I tried to make  something with some Irish flavor. It arrived on her doorstep on St. Patrick's Day!

Well, the troops will be back from AWANA soon. I'd sure appreciate any prayers for my kids! Thanks in advance! You folks are the best! :)

Love and shalom to all! Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, March 6, 2017

A new job!

I have just one more weekend to work at the deli! That will be March 18-19. I just returned from applying for a job at the Badoura Tree Nursery which is run by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. I'm looking forward to no more hair nets and rubber gloves! I can work in old "farm" clothes and enjoy the aroma of soil and evergreens. I'll be working with a friend who used to work in the deli. The job only lasts for a month, but will give my savings a boost and then I'll figure out what to do from there. I plan on this being a yearly event.

The job entails grading the seedlings by size and then packing them for shipment. It's done inside a building on the nursery grounds. We're not doing the stooping and bending of harvesting the trees. It's pretty much standing by a conveyer belt, sometimes with a coat on, because it may be cold/cool in the building. I'm sure it will be a lot like some of the work I've done over the years on our farm. That's why I think I'll like it. It will be a lot of standing, but it's only for a month. It's nice to know you're doing a job that helps people plant trees and make the state more beautiful. :)

Other than that, I'm resting up from a weekend of work. Feels like I might be coming down with something AGAIN. I've been helping with grandbabies a lot, and everyone is taking turns being Oh well. I have two weeks before I have to work again, so I'll just rest and relax. :)

I've been rearranging furniture, trying to make a nice spot to paint on larger canvases. Now that it's kind of ready I just have to figure out what to paint. That's always the difficult part! Here is a smattering of my recent ATC stuff, just so there will be some photos in this post. Ha ha!

I had to apologize to the gal who requested this Wonder Woman ATC, because she's kind of cross-eyed! She said she loved it! It reminds her of her Siamese cat, LOL!

I painted my Food Inchies...

...and these Dinos for the Dinosaur Inchies swap.

Life goes on as per usual. I'm loving my "retirement". I got a gym membership, but I think that's going to be kind of a waste with me being sick so much, lol. But I'm hoping the weather will allow more time outside with prospects of walks. March can be a very snowy month in these parts, so we'll see how that goes.

I hope to check out some blogs today. You all stay warm (or cool, depending on where you live) and I'll see you next time!


Friday, February 24, 2017

Nothing very newsworthy...

But that won't stop me from posting!

I think I've been overdoing the video watching. The days slip by so quickly!

I've been planning a small makeover of my appearance for my son's upcoming wedding. I mean, I can't show up to meet my new daughter-in-law looking like a total frump. So, pretty soon the hair will be getting cut in what my daughter calls a "mom cut". This photo is an example, but I don't labor under any misguided notions that I'll look like this. I'm not sure if I want layers. I'm going to try it just all one length and see how much curl I have. I can always go back and get it layered later.
I'm also playing around with simple makeup. As some may have guessed, I eschewed makeup years ago, mainly for reasons of allergies and expense, but I think I'm open to using a little. I've ordered a couple of products from the BOOM line for older ladies. Expensive, but I'm sure I will use it sparingly and not very often. Should last me a good long time! I'm just getting the Color Stick which can be used for lips, cheeks and eyes and the moisturizer. Remember this gal? I like her ideas about makeup and the older lady. :)

I ordered a dress online. I know; dangerous. We'll see how that goes. It was a very cheap dress, so if it looks very cheap, I'll return it and visit some brick and mortar shops when summery fashions appear. I'm giving myself lots of time. I like to have everything figured out well ahead of time. Can you tell?

In the art area all I've done is a few more drawings...

I think I ended with #13 for my 29 Faces challenge. I'm still behind, but here are numbers 14-21.

 I thought I was missing a face, but then I remembered we were allowed to use animal faces, so I counted this one. :)

 These Food Inchies will be painted for a swap.

 These were for an Owl Inchies swap.
 And then I painted these two to give away in swaps...
Well, it's getting late so I'll wrap this up. Y'all have a great weekend!
Shalom, everyone!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Touring on a narrowboat...

I don't have TV and I don't watch a lot of movies, SO, this is what I do a lot. Want to join me on a narrowboat cruise through the beautiful English countryside? Warning: this is almost an hour long, but you could always watch it a little at a  time. :)
You really get to see a lot of beautiful, lush countryside. You also learn a lot about how locks work. I hope you'll enjoy this along with me!

Nighty-night, everyone!

Monday, February 13, 2017

My great blogging friends...

Thanks to all of you for your kind comments concerning my mom and my health issues. You're the best!

I did finally go to the clinic today. Woo hoo! Been threatening for quite some time! The PA I saw said my lungs sound fine, but are probably just a little irritated from the secretions they're having to put up with. He was a little more concerned with my sinus pain and low grade fever. So, he prescribed an antibiotic which I've begun to take. I expect that this will take care of my problems, and I'm so glad I decided to go in.

I haven't been doing a whole lot while I've been under the weather. I did watch a scad of movies over the weekend: Pride and Prejudice (the four hour version), Persuasion (the 80's version), Jane Eyre (the Toby Stephens version) and Night at the Museum (with the kooky Neaderthal guy).

I've been trying to keep up with my 29 Faces challenge. Here are the latest...

Maybe I can dig up some new grandkid photos. Well, here's an assortment of kids and grandkids... :)
Here's my sweet son, Josh. He's growing out his head hair a little.

And here he is with Nathan and Starry.

This is what Micah calls her Walmart Freak Show. She's wearing Sully, Hazel's sticking her tongue out, Adele is saying something, and the little boy with the brown hair is Micah's nephew, Max. Audrey is in school. Micah babysits Max a couple of days a week. She's a brave gal and doesn't mind doing this sort of thing...most of the time!

Jordan and friend Andrew, clowning around.

Adele takes her superhero job very seriously. The binky makes the outfit. (Not to mention the slippers!)

I don't remember what Audrey was so excited about, but this is the only recent photo I have of her, lol.

Yup, Sully (aka Bubba) is always this sweet. I think he's the spittin' image of his dad, and seems to have his dad's temperament. He's a blessing!
Well, that's all I have for ya at the moment! I hope you're all well and happy as a bunch of clams.
Have a shalom filled week! :)

Friday, February 10, 2017

The crud...

I've been sick since January 28th when I posted about Mom going to heaven. I thought I was getting better about a week ago, then after working the weekend things began going downhill again on Monday. At that time it seemed like the flu (which I'm assuming is what I had) turned into something in my sinuses. My sinuses aren't hurting really bad; just enough to bother me a bit and I'm a little head achey. I seem to keep getting a little fever each evening (like 1 degree). I took 2 aspirins yesterday and 2 just now. That's about all I've taken. If I'm still feeling cruddy on Monday I guess I'll give in and go to the clinic. I know my insurance won't cover the visit, so I'm being cheap. I can afford it, I'm just being stubborn, plus, the clinic is so crowded since everyone has this junk. But two weeks is long enough!

Okay, now that I've whined, here are my latest faces for the 29 Faces challenge, then I'm going blog visiting!
I also checked out a bunch of movies from the library, so I'll be having a marathon at some point. :) (Oh, yeah. I managed to get to the library book sale, no matter what!)

Hope everyone is staying well!
Love and shalom to all!

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Art work catch up...


It's my working weekend, so I'm pretty pooped, but I wanted to catch up on recording the artwork I've swapped lately. I hope everyone is doing well. I'll probably do more blog reading and such after I get through work tomorrow.

Okay, now I'll start looking through my photos and slapping them on this page as I find them. :)

These four were for a Pick-a-Theme swap. Each person in my "group" asked for a specific theme for their card.


"Bird in a birdbath"

"Cats" and "Nature"
 This one was for a Make Me Happy swap where you make someone happy by drawing what they ask for. These are one-to-one swaps. This gal asked for a drawing of Aki, a singer in a Japanese band. I'd never heard of her, but I Googled her name and found a photo for reference.
 Then there was the "Cars" swap. I know, I know, they're WONKY. That's the best I can do...

 For another Make Me Happy (MMH) swap a guy asked for a bobcat.
 And yet another MMH. She asked for a Beatrix Potter character.
 I'm just beginning a 29 Faces challenge. We simply draw a face each day. I haven't done one today. I'll probably wait til Monday and do several to catch up.
I was down to just the 29 Faces challenge and our usual monthly 5x7 acrylic on canvas swap, but today I added a bunch of inchies swaps to my list. My friend in the UK (she goes by the name of Noodlerabbit on the swap site) comes up with so many cute ideas for swaps that I can't resist. :)

Everyone have a great rest of your weekend!