Wednesday, March 21, 2018

The Catio

Brody and Bentwood loved hanging out together on the "catio" when the weather was nice. These pictures are from last June, and because we left for the summer at the beginning of July and Brody tragically passed away a few weeks later, these are my last picture of him in one of his favorite spots. 


One day Brody was sticking his tongue out while he rested. This was a pretty good symbol for how he usually seemed to feel about me. 😝 

But how I loved him anyway! If anything, even more so! (Much to his dismay.)

Bentwood is such a sweet, mellow, good-natured cat, which makes him popular with the pet professionals. When I take him to the vet for check-ups, techs will come in just to pet him and say hi because they like him so much. Same with when I board him. He really is a sweetheart.

This one on the other hand...
"Leave me alone, I'm layin' in my sun spot."

Sun-habilitation...I really do think the fresh air and sunshine helped him feel better.
When you find that sleeping position that's just right...

 I miss this view so much.

I've found this to be so true in my life:
"Time spent with cats is never wasted."
-Sigmund Freud

Monday, March 19, 2018

June 2017 was a Good Month

We had a great time on our cruise last week! I'll try to do some blog posts about it within a year. LOL.

Random happenings from last June...

We went to the boys' favorite playground the week school got out.

Things I bought from the Iowa Arts Festival downtown. I was pleased with my finds and purchases.
 Shopping can be rewarding!

It was time to replace my navy blue Saltwater sandals after a few years of wearing the same ones.
I LOVE THESE SANDALS! They're comfortable, cute, and you can wear them with almost anything.

A healthy orange lunch of steamed baby carrots and a sweet potato. Oompa-loompa approved.

The neighborhood mailhouse viewed from my car. It was a pretty day.

Peter and I had our 15th anniversary on June 15th. Our golden anniversary! 💑 
We went out to a really nice French restaurant for dinner, and he sent me this delicious Edible Arrangements that the whole family enjoyed.
A little bit of England in Iowa City. 💓

My organizing project for June was to go through all of the magazine articles I've saved over the years, clean them out, and organize the keepers into binders.

The three-hole punch got a lot of action, and little paper dots followed me around the house all month.


This wasn't a useless project because I enjoy collecting and curating useful and interesting information, and I refer to my "info binders" regularly, which is a lot easier to do now that the articles are organized and accessible instead of piling up in the boxes that many of them were in for years.

Paper dots all vacuumed up!

  My project room is one of my happy places. I love it! 
 I've had the cream-colored dresser ever since I was 13 years old (John's age!). The tall wooden bookshelf was a wedding gift from my dad. And the glider chair is the one I used for my babies.

 John loves his dad.

Sam positioned this stuffed dog (Buddy) from The Secret Life of Pets so that it could watch him play on his iPad. I thought it was cute.

 The heart of the home.

I don't remember why I took random pictures around the house, but I'm feeling nostalgic now since we'll be moving this summer so I'm going to include them in this post. I love my house and it's going to be hard to leave it.
This is such a cozy place to read and be surrounded by books. I love this spot. It's another one of my happy places. Perhaps our new house will have an actual library? A lady can dream!

I love our yard and the scenery around it. How pretty is this? I wish there were a way to bring it all with us.
I paused the DVR while watching an episode of Grantchester and this is what it paused on. Sid looked so cute!

Doggies at rest.

The boys built this big fort on a Sunday morning.

Church bags and other things lined up for church that day.
 The flowers were for a Sharing Time I was teaching about the Word of Wisdom. I poured a can of root beer on them as an object lesson about putting good things into our bodies, not bad. I gave the flowers away to my neighbor-friend up the hill (who happened to be the Primary secretary) and they survived longer than I thought they would!

Speaking of putting good things into our bodies, these cookies are so good. 😄

 Sam thought this was so funny. Look closely at what's keeping Buddy the dog attached to the two-headed dragon and maybe you'll agree.

The fridge was pretty cleared out before we left for Massachusetts for the summer. I like to use up everything perishable that I can in the weeks before we go. Waste not, want not!

Shoes lined up on the stairs. I thought the evening light shining in on them was pretty.

Summer wreath on the front door.

June is one of my favorite months of the year, and last June didn't disappoint. It turned out to be our last month with Brody too, which makes me feel all the more fond of it.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Blog Break

Last week I was the last in the family to catch the norovirus bug. It was awful. It left me out of commission for about two days, and weak and tired for another day after that. It messed up my week and now I have more to do than usual before we go on vacation and try to get our house ready to put on the market. So in an effort to get everything done in a timely manner, and also because I'll be on vacation, I won't be blogging for the next two weeks. I know you'll miss me, but you can always scroll through my blog and enjoy posts from the past. They're always there for you. 😊 

Also, while I'm writing this, I just have to vent for a minute and complain that Google is up to its old tricks again. It randomly won't let me sign into my blog on Google Chrome, so I have to do my blogging for now on Mozilla Firefox, which leaves funny spaces between some of the pictures on my posts. It's a tedious, time-consuming pain in the neck to try and fix it all, so I have to ignore it and move on, but my inner perfectionist is not happy. 😒

On that unhappy note...don't worry, be happy! 😏 (I really wanted to insert an eye-rolling emoji there, but Blogger is failing me again and doesn't have it.)

See you in a few weeks.


We went to a new place for Memorial Day weekend last year--Omaha, Nebraska! It was our first time going there and we had a lot of fun. It was a little less than a four-hour drive, which isn't too bad. I liked driving out there because in our seven years in Iowa I'd never really been farther west than Des Moines, which is in the middle of Iowa. It was neat to finally drive through the whole beautiful state.

We first did church history stuff, because obviously it's most important! 😇

Mormon history is everywhere in this part of Omaha because Winter Quarters was here for the Saints in the mid-1800s as they trekked out west.

I'm not sure who that person in the middle is supposed to be. Maybe Jesus, but it didn't look like him to me. 
I thought it was kind of creepy looking! I could be wrong but I don't think this was done by the Church.

I hadn't seen one of these old-school merry-go-rounds in a long time. I liked playing on these when I was a kid, but as an adult, not so much. Peter spun me really fast on it and I felt sick for a little while after that. I can't do circle rides anymore!

The Mormon Trail Center was really well-done.

I like the hymn "Come, Come Ye Saints" and I learned that it was written right here in Iowa.

Speaking of "Come, Come Ye Saints"...

Playing with a really big wheel.

Looking at a really big replica of the Salt Lake Temple.

There was a pioneer cemetery on the grounds. I have pioneer ancestry on my dad's side, so I looked for familiar names from my family tree, and I found one. I'll have to investigate that at some point.

Peter and I had gone to the Winter Quarters Temple that morning.

We spent our two evenings in downtown Omaha. I really liked the downtown area; it was clean and nice and had lots of unique shops and restaurants.

I have a long-held soft spot for Frog and Toad, so I had to take a picture of this!

"Absolutely do not touch." For some reason, this tickled my funny bone.

We spent the second day of our weekend vacation at Henry Doorly Zoo, Omaha's highly-renowned zoo. It lived up to the hype; it was awesome!

Do you see it?

I think flamingos are cool. Not as cool as owls, but still cool.

Naptime for the lion den. It was a very warm day.

We hadn't seen these striped fellas since Animal Kingdom in 2016. I love their stripes!

Some views from the sky-ride:

Mr. Rhino needs a bath.

These aquarium tunnels are so cool.

Sam was fascinated by this eel. Yuck!

My favorite part of the zoo was the indoor rainforest. It's one of the largest indoor rainforests in the world!

His heir and his spare...
(Sorry, I've been watching a lot of King Henry VIII stuff lately.)

A cute little burrowing owl

(It's not real!)

Sam fell in love with a giant snake in the gift shop, and sometimes I'm a pushover so I got it for him. He was so happy!

That night we saw Memorial Day fireworks from our hotel room. Convenient!

The final day was Monday, Memorial Day. On the other side of the river from Omaha, in Council Bluffs, Iowa, we stopped at the Kanesville Tabernacle on our way home. This is a lesser-known but interesting and well-maintained church history spot.

This is where Brigham Young was sustained as the new prophet after Joseph Smith was killed.

We stopped in Des Moines for lunch at The Cheesecake Factory and then we were home by mid-afternoon. 
It really was a fun weekend in Omaha!

John enjoyed this hug from Peter at lunch. 😄