Tuesday, April 28, 2020

CoronaVirus Pandemic - Has Life Gotten A New Normal?

Coronavirus or Co-Vid 19 has taken lives of so many Americans, along with many other nationalities, and may simply have changed our lives forever. Many states have been under a shutdown for 30 days or longer and some are looking to extend that now that May 1st is rolling around. Many families have completely changed to a new routine with children doing E-Learning at home, many parents working from home, and many without jobs due to this shutdown. Many feel that the shutdown and all the steps that government has taken is a full abuse of power, while others feel that the steps have been helpful and some have even asked why more has not been done. A nation divided is what we always will be, as not everyone will ever agree upon the steps to take in these times. 

As I listened to the governor's update yesterday on our state and the preparations we are making to return to an open society, I was thinking that I believe life as we knew it before the pandemic has simply vanished. Are masks going to be a new normal? Will the number of people in a business at one time be limited? Will schools change the way they operate? Have parents discovered that being home and a part of their child's life is important and that the job that was so important may have lost some of it's luster? Do parents hate eLearning? These are all things to consider after the pandemic has left us with a new look at life. I have seen many good things come from this pandemic as well. I have taken virtual tours of zoos and museums that I would never have seen in real life. I have seen many people coming up with fabulous ways to help their children connect with friends, many people finding a unique way to visit their loved ones in nursing homes, and even a stuffed animal zoo that a family is doing to raise money for the humane society. Creative and fun and a great teaching tool - a way to give a little joy to those that might be struggling some. Across the United States, there have been so many good stories of faith, human kindness, and someone lending a hand for someone in need. Those are the times that I hope we never lose following the pandemic. 

On Sunday, my husband and I had to make a supply run for his garage. I decided that I would wear a mask as the weather was nice and I was fully aware that people would be out more and I was so correct. I wore my homemade mask everywhere we entered and I am thankful that I did. We even left two stores without going in because of the lines in the parking lot going in and the number of cars in the parking lot. My husband is in the high risk category and I am not taking chances of being the one to give it to him. I began thinking that this might be a new normal for myself and others. Having to wear a mask in public, even into the bank where I could not wear a hat or sunglasses before this whole virus ravished parts of our country. Social distancing is a new normal word that I am sure will somehow be listed as the phrase of the year in December as we look back on 2020. 

20/20 is known as being perfect eyesight and I think that 2020 has given us a chance to look at our lives with a new vision and make some changes to ourselves as well as our society. Maybe families have grown a little closer and found new ways to interact. Maybe the kids are discovering a world outside the window, that may be changing, but still offers fascinating play opportunities and learning. Maybe a child that would normally be on the computer has learned that grass and other items in nature can be more exciting than the game he/she plays for hours on end. Maybe a board game with mom or dad or both has become a Friday night routine and needs to continue. Maybe dinner with everyone at the table has made a comeback. Maybe some good has come out of this and 2020 has opened our perfect vision to a world that existed before and that might very well change around us but can still hold some of those important values that seem to have gone out the window. 

Our state is still seeing hundreds of cases daily and I truly feel that our stay at home order needs to continue. I know others are not happy about it and I don't know that it will happen, but for myself I will be sheltering in place a little longer. I will be social distancing a little longer and I will be making more trips to the barn to visit the horses, but it is okay. We are healthy and I intend to stay that way!

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Sunday Blessings #10

Good Morning! It's a rainy, but bright morning here on the farm. I am thankful for the bright skies as I am hoping that means an end to the rains that have fell for about 24 hours now. Everything is getting green and I am fully aware that spring is upon us, but with highs in the mid 50's it sure does not feel like spring. I am thankful that we had decent weather for the time that my cousin and his wife visited from out of state this weekend. This post is ging to be a little different than the others as I want to post photos instead of writing a long post of things I am thankful for. 
My daughter who loves the outdoors and the rural life. 
Two of my dear friends

Another dear friend
Country roads in the winter time
Horseback riding
Memories like this taken at the state fair several years ago

I could share so many more but I will leave the others for another time. I hope you will join in and share your Sunday Blessings with us. Link up below! 


Thursday, April 23, 2020

Cleaning, Purging and Quarantine Life

Since the closing of  the beauty shop, in a local nursing home, that my daughter works in almost a month ago my life has certainly been different. I had my grand doll 4 days a week for 9 hours or more a day and our days consisted of preschool, at home, and playing. Being an only child, she does not like to play alone and I was usually the 'friend' she needed daily. These days she is with mom most of the day, although I thankfully still see her as they live very close to us. The time apart has given me some time to work on cleaning the clutter that had accumulated due to all of our crafts, preschool activities, and just daily life. It has also given me time to purge some of my business supplies and closets and I have done just that. 

I am sure that our trash man feels overwhelmed with the full dumpster that he has had the past couple of weeks. ( Not all of it has been ours- I didn't have that much.) I have managed to probably fill it completely once in 2 weeks and probably added at least a quarter of the second load. I was not aware that we had so many small toys and papers along with so many craft things that we had used most of and there really was no reason to keep what was left. I am thankful to have gotten rid of some of it and I have managed to make some progress in figuring what I truly need to do next as far as projects go. If my daughter is off a little longer, which I believe she will be, I will finally get the photo albums filled and I will write descriptions to the ones that I can. 

I have also donated many books to the local Little Library and still need to work on the grand dolls room. She has a 3 shelf bookcase that is completely full! In her short life time, we have read over 200 books. She enjoys reading and I am so thankful that she does. Now that I am learning more about Montessori schools, I am thinking that we may homeschool kindergarten next year in order to work on things in a more Montessori school way. I truly believe that it is the exact type of schooling that she will do well with. She likes to be busy and she likes to learn while doing. 

I have also worked on some sewing skills while being quarantined and I have rediscovered my love of reading mysteries and other books. It is so different to be able to read an entire chapter without having to play Barbie's or some other toy/game while trying to read one page. Adult books are so much better than reading a farm animal book for the 25th time. I love farm animals, but there are only so many times that my brain needs to know that a cow says Moo. Thankfully, she also enjoys dinosaurs, and her Bible story book. It does at least give us a large variety of books. 

I cook three meals a day most days and so that has not been a huge change like it has to several people. It has been nice to have a little more time to cook though and put a little more effort into planning the meals. We have tried a few new recipes, but most we have not really liked. I have not done much baking as my husband is diabetic and truly does not need the sugar or the carbs. It seems as though I have substituted ice cream for the normal dessert as I usually have a bowl every evening while watching something on television or reading. 

I hope you have all found a way to keep occupied and keep the anxiety at bay. The first week or two was really tough for me, but now I am enjoying the time I have. It is nice to know that my husband and I don't have to constantly be on the go. He can keep in touch with his mom by phone and it has been a nice change of pace to be home. I wish that it was warmer out so that we could enjoy more time outside and work on yard work and gardening, but that will come soon, I hope. 

God bless each of you!

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Sunday Blessings #9

Good Morning to each of you! I hope you have all had an amazing week and our full of blessings today! I usually begin this with a short blurb about my week, but I just want to get right to the blessings for the week. 
Sunday Blessings

1. My mother-in-law has been fighting Co-Vid 19 little over a week now and seems to be improving. Now, I have a very difficult relationship with her and feel that my husband would be truly blessed if she would have passed, but I am thankful for his sake that she is surviving and overcoming. I am honestly surprised as her lungs are not in good shape and she has other of the high risks as well. Even the nurse did not give her great odds. Thankfully, she is doing well enough that they expect her to return to the nursing home today. 

2. I was blessed to hear that my cousin plans to visit from Virginia this coming weekend. We are still practicing social distancing and I know it is not the best time, but he will be picking up a motor that he purchased from my husband and he's going to stay in a hotel instead of with us. I hate that. However, he plans to visit a bit and we will be able to sit in my husband 's garage or on the porch and visit. We can remain far enough apart that it should be fine. I sanitize my home daily and so it is a clean environment for him and will be after he leaves. It will be nice to see a different face. LOL!

3. There are talks that our state may be one of the first to begin to open back up. I don't think that our Governor is quite as hurried as President Trump seems to be. He seems to be using much precaution and seems to be listening to state health officials. I am thankful that he is . He has extended our stay at home order till May 1, 2020 and I think that is a good idea myself. I am thankful that he has taken those precautions. I must say that other than missing my friends, I would like to remain this way for a little longer as I am still hearing of cases being diagnosed. I learned of two yesterday. Very sad indeed! I hope that they both recover and that our new normal is not just learning of new cases and hoping it is not us to please all of these that want to open up and move on. 

4. I am thankful for my husband, whom although at a high risk for the virus has continued to work daily and has truly been busier than before, I think. It is hard to think that repairing cars can be such an important thing to have done at this time, but I guess it is. Maybe because people are having work done because they are off work. I truly don't know. It is still a blessing. 

5. My friends that have been so thoughtful to call, get together on a video chat and stuff just so we could keep in touch. I am blessed to have such amazing friends- most of us since high school. 

Well, I pray that each of you have something to share. I hope you will join my weekly post by adding your own Sunday Blessings! 

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Sunday, April 12, 2020

Sunday Blessings #8

 Happy Easter! I am so blessed to be writing this week's Sunday blessings as I truly was not sure I would write it on Friday as I was truly having a mental breakdown and was scared of how I was feeling. It seemed as though my walls were closing in on me and that everything in my life was changing so quickly and I had no control. It was scary and sad. Once, I spoke with a friend and talked some of it out, I was feeling much better. I know that I have many things to be thankful for and that there are many blessings in the world, but it suddenly felt that there was nothing in my life worth fighting for. 

I am blessed to have good long- time friends in my life and I am blessed to have the online friends that I have as well. Many of you have reached out and asked how I have been with all the crazy that is our world these days. I am so blessed by that. The moments that someone truly wants to know how I am is a moment that I truly feel that I am blessed the most. 

I am blessed with my husband of over 25 years. He has always worked hard to provide for our family and he truly loves me in my worst times as well as my best. He has struggled with his mom being sick and has struggled with her attitude of everything he does for her never being good enough and yet, he is always there when she truly needs something. He understands why I have had to step back from her care and understands why I can't continue to allow her to upset me with her accusing and hateful comments. He loves his children unconditionally and it shows in all that he does. 

I am blessed with three children, that I will truly miss being together today. My son and his fiancé are such a huge blessing, although we don't see them often. We are also blessed with my oldest daughter and her fiancé that are willing to help with anything that we ask of them. We are blessed with my youngest daughter and her precious little girl. What a blessing grandchildren are! They can always make the world seem right just by watching them sleep! 

I am blessed to work with a company like Pink Zebra that allows me to work around my family and life. I am able to set my own goals and if I don't reach them, it is okay. I am blessed that they have fantastic owner that truly care about their employees and not just the ones in the office or that make the best sales. What an amazing company!!

For the day, we may not be able to spend with some of our family, but I encourage you to give them a call or stop by and visit through the window with them. It will be a blessing to both of you! Maybe check on a friend that you have not spoken with for a few days or even longer. They might just need that special moment in their life! God Bless You!

Please join us and write your own Sunday Blessing Post and link to us below. 

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Sunday Blessings #6

Sunday Blessings 

This is a place you can share your blessings each week in hopes that we encourage others. Feel free to link up your own Sunday Blessings post , so that we can visit you as well. 



I write this amidst a pandemic in our country known as Co-Vid 19. Many of us have never experienced anything like this and hopefully, never will again. Life has seemingly changed overnight and brought uncertainty and fear to many of us. Grocery stores putting limits on items like toilet paper, paper towels, chicken and cleaning supplies. Consumers racing to the store to load cartloads of food and household items into their cars, leaving others with nothing to be able to use. It is sad to see the greediness that has seemed to take over, but for each of those stories, you can find a person that is giving or going out of their way to care for others. 

I have thought long and hard as to what I would write this morning as I have been feeling down a lot this week. I am hope with my mother, my husband, 2 dogs, and my daughter and grand doll as well as my father in law to check on each day as he lives next door. It seems as though my life has changed overnight as well. My granddoll did come every day while her mom worked, which is not happening at the moment. She still visits as they live within about 50-100 feet from our house. She just isn't here daily and if she is, it is not just me and her. Usually, I have a couple of days a week, that we are the only two here for most of the day and I sure miss those days. 

Also, I feel like I am missing so much right now. Normally, I would visit with a friend for lunch or coffee , at least once a week and that has stopped. I also feel disconnected from everyone. We have called and we have facetimed, but it is not the same as face to face physical visits. With summer quickly approaching, I need the time to camp with friends, vacation with friends, and do all my normal stuff. Stay at home orders keep happening in the United States and we keep hearing many different dates from local, state, and federal officials as to when they might be lifted. I need definite! I find that my personality needs a black or white answer, not grey! 

Enough complaining though, this post is to be thankful. I am thankful that we have the technology that we do. I am thankful for the phone calls, texts, and video chats that I have been able to have. I am thankful to have friends that I am still close too. 

I am blessed that we have been able to take some evening drives and enjoy the spring scenery that is unfolding around us. I am thankful that my husband is still working. I am thankful and blessed that we are not sick and lying in the hospital with no family or loved ones able to visit. I am thankful that my children talk to me on a daily basis. 

Blessings abound around us, if we can just see them. My highlight of the week has been watching two pileated woodpeckers from outside my living room window each morning play and eat from the birdfeeder in the yard. If you are not aware of what they are, you should read about them. They are large woodpeckers and absolutely beautiful. They are certainly my favorite bird by far! 

Thanks for stopping by and I will look forward to your link below. Please only link to your Sunday Blessings post and not your entire blog. Thanks! Have a Blessed Sunday!!

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Saturday 9: Could've Been

Could've Been

Welcome to Saturday 9. What we've committed to our readers is that we will post 9 questions every Saturday. Sometimes the post will have a theme, and at other times the questions will be totally unrelated. Those weeks we do "random questions," so-to-speak. We encourage you to visit other participants posts and leave a comment. Because we don't have any rules, it is your choice. We hate rules. We love memes, however, and here is today's meme!
 Saturday 9: Could've Been (1987)

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) This wistful song is about a love affair that ended. What song reminds you of a long-ago love?

A. The song "What Could Have Been" by Little Texas. 

2) It was written by Lois Blaisch, a singer-songwriter who performs at clubs around Los Angeles and has sung outdoors at Disneyland. Would you prefer to attend a concert indoors, or outside under the stars?

A. Indoors due to weather concerns, but I do enjoy listening to music outside. 

3) This week's featured artist, Tiffany, appeared on the TV talent show Star Search when she was just 14. She came in second. Though she was disappointed, she admits she learned from it. She studied the singer who won and says it made her a better performer. Can you recall a time when you weathered a tough time and came through stronger?

A. There have been many times, but the near loss of my mom when she ruptured her esophagus was very rough. I believe, we are all struggling right now through a time that will make us stronger. 

4) Early in her career, she toured Alaska, opening for country legend George Jones. Have you ever visited our 50th state? 

A. No, it is on my places to visit. Just have not made it yet. 

5) Tiffany provided the voice of Judy Jetson in 1990's Jetsons: The Movie. Which cartoon did you enjoy more: the space-age Jetsons or the pre-historic Flintstones?

A. Oh! I could never pick between the two as I loved both of them. 

6) In 2007, she appeared on VH1's Celebrity Fit Club and lost 28 lbs. Are you making an effort to stay fit during this stay-at-home period?

A. I have been taking a few walks, but I know I am snacking more so I don't know that it will help. 

7) In 1987, when this song was popular, Aretha Franklin became the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. What's your favorite Aretha song?

A. R-E-S-P-E-C-T and "I Knew You Were Waiting" which she performed with George Michael. 

8) Also in 1987, third-generation race car driver Marco Andretti was born. Are you a race fan?

A. Not much. I should be since we live in a state that is very race active in May, but just do not care a great deal for it. My husband even raced for a few years. 

9) Random question: Do you find it easy to sit still, or are you fidgety?

A. Fidgety, for sure! I don't like to sit still at all. I do better if I am sitting outside , but I still need to move often.

Mother's Day

 Mother's Day can be such a beautiful day for many people, but I always think of the moms that have suffered losses of children, either ...