Life, as I see it.

wow - lots has happened that I haven't blogged about:

Kindergarten graduation
Our 11-year anniversary
The Garden
My obsession with the Twilight Series
Life in General.

So - hold onto your hats - this post is going to be a long one!!

K-garten Graduation

The boy graduated. He learned his letters and his numbers and colors and can color inside the lines (most of the time). My little baby boy is officially a 1st grader. I know that in 12 short years, he'll be getting ready to head off to college. holy cow - I can't believe that!!

Here he is - getting his "certificate". Of course, he put the paper right in front of his face, so we couldn't see him!
...and here they are...the future graduating "Class of 2021"!!
Joseph...in all his cheeseball glory. This kid LOVES the camera!!!

Here is Sarah - one of Joseph's many other girlfriends. He likes to play house with her. she's the Mommy, and he is the Daddy. Oh yeah, starting young...

And here is the MOST AWESOME K-garten teacher in the world!! Mrs. O'Donnell! We absolutely LOVE her. I don't think I could have made it through the fist year of school without her. She is simply amazing.
Posing with Grandma....what a handsome guy!!

Joseph with his friend, Joseph. (There are 3 Josephs between the two classes.) of 36 kids, there are 3, what is that a 12% occurrence?)

And the graduate...cruising after graduation in Grandma's yellow convertible! He thinks he's so cool...
Our 11-year anniversary
This deserves a post unto itself. I am so very happy that Joe and I celebrated our 11-year anniversary on June 20th. 11 years. It has been an amazing 11 years too. We know each other almost too well, and can figure out what the other is thinking sometimes. That being said, he never ceases to amaze me. sometimes, I'll sneak a sideways glimpse at him and fall in love all over again. I'm a pretty lucky person to have such an amazing man in my life that loves me. I know, enough of the mushy stuff - but in all seriousness...I have a pretty awesome husband.
Here is one of those sneaky glimpses...This was this afternoon, while the Tigers Game was on TV. My two boys. sigh. Life is grand.

The Garden

I don't think I've shown a picture of the finished patio, so here is one. We've been having some great fires in the chimnea, roasting marshmallows, watching bats in the evening sky and fighting off mosquitoes. Anyone who says that smoke keeps mosquitoes away is a liar.
And now - some pics of the garden: Check out the zucchini!!!

My obsession with the Twilight Series
I have to thank my friends Karen and Sarah, as they are the wonderful people who suggested that I read the Twilight Series. I figured they couldn't be too bad...they made a movie out of them. So - a few weeks ago, Karen loaned me the first book. The boys were gone on a Sunday afternoon, so I poured myself a glass of Cab, and sat on the newly finished patio and started the first book. I. Never. Put. It. Down.
Oh my goodness - these books are GOOD!! Forbidden love, teen angst, romance, sigh. Never mind the whole "he's a vampire, she's human" thing. sigh. I'm horribly addicted. So, I finished the first book in one night. (You know I'm a speed reader). I read it again over the next few days, until Karen could loan me the second book. Then I rented the movie on OnDemand. wow. I want to be a vampire!! No, seriously! Well, maybe not really...but the movie was GREAT!!! Karen finally loaned me the third book a few days ago, and I devoured that in one evening. and I've reread that one twice too. There are vampires and werewolves and love and history (a little...). I stopped by Karen's house today to borrow the 4th and final book. I SO have a date with that book and a cup of tea tonight. I'm so excited!!!
Life in General
Notice that I haven't said much about the Celiac? I'm mad about it. I'm not sure where I stand with it or against it. I don't want it to run my life. I don't want to constantly have to think about what I eat, and what goes into my system, and if that piece of food has ever touched wheat. Sigh. but I'm trying to be positive. So - I'm not thinking about it, and I'm not really talking about it either. The doctor wants to take some more tests to see how much damage has been done, and then I have to see a nutritionist. I really feel bad for Joe. This is going to change how I cook dinner. I've been good about it so far, but I can only cook so much. I have lots of learning to do!!! :) If you know of any good gluten-free recipes - send them on over. Mind you, there can't be many vegetables, no onions, etc. OR...if you know of any gluten-free bakeries. Someone said there is one in Clawson...I'm going to try to find it this week.
Not much else going on. 4th of July coming up...we are going to MN to see the Bubbs! Yeah! Little Joe is VERY excited about this trip!


Are you kidding me?

I just found out that I have Celiac disease.  Yup.  All my stomach problems that I thought was an ulcer…wrong.

I am gluten intolerant.

I can’t have wheat, rye, barley or oats.

I can’t have bread.


One of my most favorite things in the world is bread…a hunk of fresh-out-of-the-oven sourdough bread with real butter melting on top.  Or, a freshly baked hunk of bread from Paesano’s (BEST RESTAURANT EVER!) with their homemade herb butter.  Or, a big slice of crunchy 9-grain bread with peanut butter.


I’ll have to find out more about this…I can’t give up bread.  There has to be a way…


Coffeemakers and Memories.

Last Sunday morning I had a meltdown.  A really big meltdown.  I wanted coffee, but my coffeemaker wasn’t working right.  It wasn’t that I NEEDED coffee, I just wanted it, because it felt like a nice coffee kind of Sunday morning.

For many years, I didn’t have a coffeemaker.  My Mom used to give me such a hard time about not buying a coffeemaker for myself.   I’m not good at buying things for myself.  Anyways - my mom got me a coffeemaker for Christmas one year.  It was a really cool coffeemaker.  Stainless carafe, programmable, very cool.  And I loved it.  After she passed away, I would think of her whenever I made coffee.  That was one of the things that we shared – coffee.  Sitting, in her living room, we would share the best moments – sipping coffee, (sometimes it was almost ½ coffee and ½ flavored cream – that was our guilty pleasure!).  

So, fast forward to last Sunday, when said coffeemaker wasn’t working.  And…I. Lost. It.  I started crying – and started swearing at the coffeemaker.  Big Joe came into the kitchen and tried to fix it, while trying to calm me down.  I was mad at the coffeemaker, and I was mad at my mom, and taking it out on the coffeemaker.  I was mad that if I got a new coffeemaker, I would lose that connection to my Mom.  I think I called the coffeemaker every name in the book.  I was mad about the mess it made all over the counter…sigh.  After deeming the coffeemaker broken – I decided to just get my mind onto something else.

So – I went to Meijer.  I got groceries – and as I was waiting in line to checkout….this guy comes up behind me who looks very similar to Big Joe – and puts a Coffeemaker into my cart.   Yes – my awesome husband decided to surprise me by buying me a coffeemaker.  It gets better…He didn’t know I was at Meijer, so that was a complete surprise.  Sigh.  Wow.  This guy is awesome.  And now – I have this amazing new coffeemaker – and I love it.  It makes REALLY good coffee too.  And the first cup I had – I made sure to toast my mom. 

Isn’t it amazing how something so small and simple can completely make your day amazing!?!?




I don’t normally check my horoscope.  Not really.  I like to think that I have SOME say in my destiny – but I looked at mine today.  ARE YOU KIDDING ME???  Check this:



Your drive and initiative are dynamic, but perhaps out of place. It is quite possible to earn frowns of disapproval if you attempt to shake things up too dramatically. Concentrate on pleasing others.



Pleasing others?!  Not today, my dear.  Today I have some work things that will be, um, volatile, to say the least.  So, I’ll be looking out for myself today, and nobody else. 


So there, cosmic karma.  Bite me.




Something for you to do this summer....

Park and Read in Michigan This Summer

The Troy Public Library has teamed up with the Library of Michigan and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to make it easier for you to enjoy a day at one of Michigan’s beautiful State parks.

When you visit the Library between now and September 25, you can pick up a one-day vehicle permit good at any Michigan State Park and Recreation Area. Many of the parks will have a hammock available for you to borrow for the day. So grab your book, pick a park, and enjoy a relaxing—and FREE—day of reading outdoors.

The program is sponsored by Macy’s and The HammockCompany.com.

Scenes from a Lazy Weekend Afternoon

The weather was so beautiful last weekend that Little Joe and I decided to have a picnic in the backyard. So, we brought out snacks, and drinks, and the blanket.

Of course, Dax wouldn't leave our side, when she smelled the food that we had brought out...
I tried to nap a bit...Joseph "pretended" to nap...too cute.

I Made a Cake....

So, I donated a "custom cake" for a local non-profit's silent auction a few months ago...

The high-bid winner called me the week RIGHT BEFORE ROUGE RESCUE to cash in her winnings. Ugh. Are you kidding? The worst week of my professional life, and I have to make a #$^# cake??? Ironically - it was one of the best things I did last week, as it got my mind entirely off of the pending weekend, and all that still needed to be done.

I kind of impressed myself with the results too...I liked it more than I thought I would. I haven't heard back from the winner of said cake, not sure if I will though. but, if you know of anyone with a special occasion coming up...I'm free now. and I make a darn good cake! :)


another babbling blog post...

There are so many things I want to do right now. But where to start? I’m feeling overwhelmed (work is crazy right now, and I don’t know where to start). Eh. Lots on my mind. Nothing bad, but I can’t turn off my mind. Such is the life of a Mom. :)

On to my point of the day:

As Barbara Kingsolver, Steven Hopp and Camille Kingsolver note in Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, it doesn’t take much of an effort to have a major impact. “If every U.S. Citizen ate just one meal a week (any meal) composed of locally and organically raised meats and produce, we would reduce our country’s oil consumption by over 1.1 million barrels of oil every week. That’s not gallons, but barrels”

Wow. That is amazing to me. I’m glad I have my own garden, and eat as much that I can out of my garden…but what about all of the other things we eat? The processed foods? The food from another state, much less another country? We use the venison that Joe gets every year, and I tend to not buy a lot of other meat at the store. I’ll buy a pork tenderloin form time to time, and some frozen chicken breasts…but maybe I really need to take a look at our food budget, and our food “locale” a little more. That, and see if my boys will eat some vegetables, rather than processed food. Hmmm...I'll have to work on that.

And here is a great link from the FREEP that talks about locals farmer's markets...

So? what does this mean to you? what are YOU going to change???


River Day - and my week of headaches

If you are so inclined – the first Saturday in June (the 6th) is River Day in Troy.  Well, Rouge Rescue across the Rouge Watershed.  We are having our event at the Stage Nature Center. (on Coolidge, just south of South Blvd.).  I would LOVE it if you joined us.  This is the job that I’ve been going crazy over.  I put together the design for a rain garden and 2 streambank stabilization areas.  REI has partnered with us, as well as Starbucks.  (Yes, I’m a Caribou girl, but Starbucks is a great community supporter, and we’re happy to have them at our event!)  Anyways, I’m ordering the plants this week, and working with the DPW to get the heavy lifting earthwork done.  There are usually over 100 volunteers, and 5 hours of work, and a BBQ for everyone afterwards.  I would LOVE to have you join us!!  Tell your friends!!  Whoo-hoo!! 


And if I bite your head off for no reason – now you know the reason why.