Jennifer Lyon
Friday, June 9th, 2023
Friday Five

TGIF!! I would sure love to know where all the time goes! Okay, enough whining, let’s dive into sharing five random things about our week. Here’s mine:

  1. It’s Thursday afternoon as I write this, and Maggie is at the vets getting her teeth cleaned, her tummy mass removed (we are pretty sure it’s a harmless lipoma), and they’ll check her ears. This week she suddenly developed itching and misery in one ear, so we’ll see. Could be anything including allergies, AND she was a boarding just about two weeks ago so she could have picked up something or other.
  2. I’m sure Maggie will be fine, they’ll call me when she’s ready to come home. But I’ve kept myself crazy busy so I don’t have time to fret and worry :-) I cleaned the carpets in the front of the house, did the laundry, went to Trader Joes and did a ton of other tasks. Now I’m moving a bit more slowly, LOL.
  3. So in the front hard, we have the pretty stone planter with flowers which we love, but we’ve been stymied on what to do with the rest of the yard. It’s just dirt and bark right now (we ripped out the plants the housing track put it because, in our opinion, they looked like dying weeds). So I printed a picture of the front yard, and began searching. I lost three hours of my life looking at pictures and coming up with very little to show for it. I showed Wizard the picture of our house that I’d printed and told him I didn’t find many ideas. Then he printed five copies of the picture and drew up five designs. I tried to get away with just picking one of his designs, but he was all mean and bullied me into making five designs of my own. I whined for a day then grudgingly did it, and now we have two designs, one from each of us, that we both really like. I’m sort of annoyed that he was right to nag me into doing it. Soon we’ll get estimates but right now we’re just happy to have some solid ideas.
  4. Wizard’s back is improving but he’s on the bench until I say otherwise. He’s cooperating (with the pretty much the same attitude I had about the front yard designs, LOL) because while he’s healing, I can see he’s about one sudden sneeze away from reinjuring it. He flat out overdid things for a long time while ignoring warning twinges and aches. But he’s steadily improving so no worries. The fact that he’s only putting up a token fight tells me his back really needs the rest.
  5. While Wizard is dealing with the frustration of being sidelined, I keep outlining all my ideas like my secret container garden down the long narrow side of the house. This poor man! First, there’s no time for that this year, and I know it. Second, there’s no money. Third, we have to get rain gutters on that side because we didn’t do it when we should have (we were idiots!), and we’re having some minor soil erosion there. Then once the rain gutters are in, that area will need to be leveled and maybe more soil brought in, rake and prepared. It’s a next Spring (if ever!) project, but I’m researching it now and excitedly babbling to him, and he’s rolling his eyes so hard, LOL! Honestly, I’m just proud of developing a vision for an area that we though was relatively useless and I’m having fun. It really will be like a secret garden because no one will know it’s there unless we show them.

So that’s my five, now I’d love to hear yours! I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 7th, 2023
My Fierce Hunter

Happy Wednesday! You all know Maggie is a bit obsessed with lizards. Here she is showing her tenacity:

Wizard and I cracked up. She was tracking two lizards: One was on the side on the house next door. Now Maggie’s an optimist, so it took her about five minutes of studying the situation before accepting there was no way for her to get to the that lizard. And the other one was the one you see her trying to get in the pic. She tried both sides of the wall, but as far as I know, never got him. Usually we find the…uh…evidence if she gets them. She loses interest once they stop moving (aka are no longer compatible with life, otherwise known as dead). Remember, I never said she was normal :-)

So that’s my Wednesday Smile — what’s yours?

Monday, June 5th, 2023
Weekend Roundup

Happy Monday! We pretty much spent the weekend at home, or around home.

Saturday I went to a Farmer’s Market (I wasn’t impressed with this one), and Wizard overdid it while unsupervised :-) That’s literally true, but I can’t fault him because I’d have done the same thing of pushing through to finish a project. Anyway, he pulled a muscle in his back. By Sunday was already doing much better so we know it’s just a muscle and he’ll be fine. But because schedules didn’t match up and Wizard could use a rest, we stayed close to home. Youngest came by  to deliver some wood for us (Wizard has many projects going!) and we did other stuff that wasn’t particularly noteworthy. Oh I made more sourdough, but that’s something I do every other week now, so it’s almost routine.

Sunday, I took Maggie for a two mile walk in the fog after which I admitted I need new running shoes. I took a deep breath and ordered an expensive new-to-me brand and we’ll see if they fit. It’s kind of weird that I spend the most on the shoes I walk in dirt with! Then I did a yoga practice and some gardening. After lunch I took Maggie to Home Depot where I was happy to see they have the dwarf Meyer lemon try in stock that I hope to get soon. It depends when Wizard can get ready that part of the hill where we are going to put it. I nearly bought my tomato and pepper plants but wisely held off since Wizards wants to rake out and put down some bark before I put potted plants on it. He’s been all logical and deliberate about it, but whatever….  The most important part of the Home Depot trip was that Maggie got about four people to pet her and tell her she’s pretty or sweet. She was quite pleased with her admirers.

Today I need to stay home for a warranty repair on a faucet and Wizard needs to go take his mom to a doctor. That usually takes half a day at the least for him, so pretty much shoots his day. But it will keep him for bending and lifting for one more day so that’s a bonus. While I’m stuck home, I hope to plan to fun cakes to decorate, and organize ingredients to bake and freeze layers. Lately, I just haven’t made the time to do it, and I miss it!

How was your weekend?? I’m guessing it more exciting that ours!

Friday, June 2nd, 2023
Friday Five

TGIF and Happy June! Can you believe we’re nearly half way through 2023? Okay, time to share five random things about our week. (I always blank on the entire week right about now, LOL).

  1. It’s been gloomy and overcast here for days. In an unusual twist, it’s getting to Wizard more than me, although I’m tired of it too. But when the heat comes, we’ll probably miss these days :-)
  2. I joined two new FB groups: One on women walking which is kind of cool. It’s for mature women who log their walks, show pics and share tips. I love the age bracket and the positivity so far. But I haven’t posted (I’m like to observe first to get a feel for groups). I also joined a gluten free one, but that one may not be for me. Just trying different things :-) I might find a gardening club for clueless amateurs — but first I have to learn to spell amateur. I couldn’t even get close enough for spell check to guess what word I was trying to write!
  3. I downloaded a walking app that I’m just trying out and like so far. To my surprise, Wizard is trying it too. Walking is not something he’s ever really enjoyed, but who knows? I think it’s cool he’s willing to try on his own time and terms. What I also like is I believe I can add him to mine so he can check where I am for safety reasons.
  4. On Thursday, I got my hair done — my bangs are growing out! I’ve had bangs for decades so this is a fun change for me. Then I worked on making another batch of sourdough bread that will eventually become two loaves. That process is getting a lot easier for me now. And we have a gift card to a restaurant, so we plan to go out to dinner, which we’re looking forward too.  I’m writing this blog before dinner, because I’ll need to shape the dough into the bannetons (baskets) for long fermentation in the fridge and forget to write the blog :-)
  5. This weekend, we might go see Turbo and his family, depending on their schedule. Otherwise, we’ll just see what happens! I’ll leave you with this pic with our son and daughter-in-law from last weekend at the Kramer Arch (I’m the shortest one, second from the right):

That’s my five and now I’d love to hear yours! I hope everyone has a terrific weekend!

Wednesday, May 31st, 2023
Procrastination Crashed My Tuesday!

You even have one of those days where Procrastination stops by uninvited?

Tuesday started off a normal day. I was a bit tired after a busy weekend and Monday we had a fun time having Biker Witch and her Biker Hubby over for dinner. They helped by bringing two dishes; my favorite vegetables and one of Wizard’s favorite desserts. Dinner prep and the cooking wasn’t hard at all, but I had to add more things in like making a bruschetta because, well, I’m me, LOL So by Tuesday I was a bit tired, but once I did my morning walk, I loosened up and was ready to take on the day. I had plans of grocery shopping, floor washing, a second walk and trying a new short yoga class that looked fun.

Things were going according to plan and I was putting away groceries, when I decided to boil some extra eggs for quick breakfasts. Sometime later — 2 minutes? 20 minutes? I remembered the eggs. I now have boiled eggs in my fridge that could be anywhere between soft boiled to ancient fossils. My breakfast tomorrow will be an adventure :-) But still, that’s a minor glitch, and I wasn’t procrastinating, just distracted by…something…I don’t remember what.

By then it was almost 11 so obviously I should wait until after lunch to clean the floors. Looking back, I could have done it, but something was whispering in my ear to wait until after lunch. So I cleared email and finally figured out an AOL problem. Then I had to think why I even still have AOL???? So I made a mental list of why…

And wait, this isn’t important. I have a G-mail account too, and why am I wasting time thinking about AOL? So i started thinking about lunch instead. I wandered into the kitchen and found leftover beautiful, colorful vegetables and rice from the previous night and turned lunch into a cooking project. I cut the veggies, made a stirfry, added the rice, then some cashews I had on hand and topped it with left over bruschetta. Sounds odd (it probably is weird, LOL) but it was good. Again, more time slips by and now there’s no time for an extra walk.

But I washed the floors! Finally! However, I had to cut out the yoga plan due to time, but I had over an hour to write a blog. Yay! I got my sparkling water and sat down to think up a brilliant blog. While pondering, I thought, “I’ll just take a quick look at FB…wait what’s this reel? A dog????” A minute or 60 later, I looked up and realized I’d been watching FB reels for an hour! Most of them were dog videos :-)

Then Wizard needed the computer.

And so it wasn’t until late (for me) last night that I was thinking, Why haven’t I written a blog? It’s not hard, what happened? And that’s when I realized that it wasn’t my fault, I clearly had an unexpected visitor from Procrastination!

Has this ever happened to you?

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, May 29th, 2023
Happy Memorial Day & Weekend Roundup

Before I get into the roundup, I want to wish everyone in the U.S. a Happy Memorial Day. As we celebrate, it’s also an opportunity to take a moment to honor the memory of those who gave their lives for our country, and all those who serve and served. A big Thank You!

Now for the weekend!

Friday was awesome! We headed out to Calico Ghost Town to our son’s campsite. They go with two other families they’ve camped with for a long time. They were all nice and fun folks. Then we headed out on the offroad vehicles. Our son and his wife have a Can AM four seater. He retrofitted it with better safety gear, and provided us with helmets and instructions. He and his wife (and their whole crew) take safety seriously. Having now met their friends and seen first hand how they handle things, I feel even more confident they do a great job of looking out for one another.

That said, one of my smiles was when my son strapped me into the harness the first time and has his wife adjust my helmet to make sure it was fastened correctly. After that time, I was “allowed” to do it on my own, but one of them checked my work when I did it, LOLOL! I’m not actually laughing at them, I’m laughing because once it was me strapping Middle into his car seats, and later his helmets and and safety gear. Life comes full circle but it’s all good. Then off we went through the desert on what I believe is called Phillips Loop, which could be called a trail if one is being generous. It was awesome, but I’ll say this, there’s not a lot of people I would trust to drive these roads and somewhat treacherous conditions. Middle son and his wife co-piloting are at the top of my list.  While he’s driving, she is watching and they are both in constant communication with the other two vehicles. I also know my son takes care of his vehicles and equipment. Wizard and I got to just be passengers without any worries :-)

It didn’t take too long to get to the Bismarck Mine and Kramer Arch. Here’s Wizard and me at the arch:


Then Daughter-In-Law, myself and three of the kids went into one of the two mines. I didn’t get pictures because I left my phone in my jacket in the vehicle. But everyone else had their phones, so I wasn’t concerned. I did worry I’d have to fight my claustrophobia, but it didn’t bother me. Partly, I think, because my daughter -in-law has been there many times, and I fully trust her. It was super interesting to see the mine.

After that we headed back to camp, ate lunch then headed into the ghost town to check out the Calico mine, the train ride, and some shops. We ended up in the small patio bar, where Wizard and I sadly didn’t drink anything fun. We would have loved to have a beer (or wine in my case), but we were driving home later. At one point, daughter in law and I went to the dog store — a cool shop that sells fun things for dogs including cake mixes! — and I came back to find Wizard and Middle putting each other in the town jail and taking pictures…Boys! They crack me up.

There are a bunch of little stories but I’ve rambled about it enough. We just had a good day “away” from the real life responsibilities and it was just what we needed.

Saturday we picked up Maggie after lunch and someone had partied too hard on their Spa Weekend. She can’t hold her eyes open!

She won’t tell us what she did all weekend, but it must have been fun! For the record, she’s always happy to see us but displays no anxiety or stress when she comes home. She’s goes right back to her routine, eats well and seems happy.

Today we’re having Biker Witch and her Biker Hubby over for dinner. We are looking forward to seeing them!

So how was your weekend?

Friday, May 26th, 2023
Friday Five

TGIF!! Every week, I experience the same thing — I wake up Monday and see a whole week in front of me, then I blink and it’s Friday! But that’s better than long boring days, right? Okay let’s get right to sharing five random things about our week:

  1. The patio ceiling fan is up and working! Wizard’s “fix” worked, then youngest came over (for the third time!) and finished installing it. We are all happy! The first problem was basically the wrong fan to hooked on the switch we had prewired when the house was built. That was annoying but fixable. It was the second problem of not being able to anchor the bracket securely that caused the headache. But that’s all done now! Both the guys worried that I might be upset that part of the bracket is showing — I’m like nope, as long as the fan is secure and safe, I’m happy! Wizard will paint the bracket to match the ceiling then we won’t notice it anyway.
  2. I made a stir fry that I loved and I’m more than thrilled :-)  I used this recipe and adjusted the spices to what we like and can tolerate. I’ve been doing well slowly and carefully adding some foods back into my diet, but some things like real garlic are not going to work. But I can use a little of the minced garlic in the jar and other spices, and we like it. I know a stir fry isn’t for everyone but I love them when done right!
  3. Wizard had his brother’s Mustang for a few days. The car had  to sit for awhile, so his brother had the battery replaced and had Wizard drive it a couple hundred miles, then they all crossed their fingers it was pass smog (required in CA). It did! But poor Wizard hurt his calf while weeding and stepping wrong off the wall, then drove that car with his racer clutch (a really hard clutch) and his calf is a mess. He barely noticed the injury when he first did it so he ignored it (like most of do, LOL), then aggravated the crap out of it with the car until I made him stay off it yesterday. Still he did get the car taken care of for his brother who is dealing with his own challenges and couldn’t do it. Plus Wizard enjoys driving the Mustang :-)
  4. Maggie went to boarding yesterday. I already miss her! She’ll be there two nights, and yesterday once she was gone, I tackled cleaning the carpet in the main areas of the house. I am wiped out! Wizard and I originally planned to both do it, but I insisted he not help due to his leg — this carpet cleaner I bought is powerful and heavy. But I got the hardest parts of the house done while Maggie’s gone. The other rooms are accessed by a hallway where we can put up a gate while it’s drying, so we can easily do those when Maggie’s home and Wizard’s leg is better.
  5. And today, finally, we’re going to Calico (a ghost town!) to see Middle and his awesome wife, and my two grandpuppies who are camping there. We are soooo looking forward to spending a day with them and doing fun stuff. We debated endlessly about taking Maggie with us (she’s usually good and the dogs all get along well), but decided to board her and get things done while she’s there. She will probably forgive me. Maybe :-) She usually has fun and loves the owner so fingers crossed!

So that’s my five, now I’d love to hear yours! I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!