The content of this blog is the author's personal view. I am not a theologian, writer, or photographer. The views in this blog are based on personal experiences and not a judgement of what others are doing.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Butterflies, Flowers and Rainbows

It is cold out today.   I had planned a while ago to post about flowers in the middle of winter so we could all have a little hope (me really) that it won't be like this forever.  I really do love winter.  I love being outside on a beautiful winter day.  I also love sitting by a fire, sometimes I sit right on the hearth with my back almost touching the glass. 

The only flower pic on my new computer
So the problem with blogging about flowers is that most of my flower pics are on my old computer which I have plugged in in the back room which is really cold.  I'm not sure I want to unplug it and find a spot in the living room to plug it in.  The battery won't last more than 5 min.  I finally decided to suffer and took a few minutes in the cold back room to transfer some of my flowers onto my new computer.

Surprise tulips.
Don't you love when you
forget you planted them?

Forget Me Nots

Wild Daisies


It took me all summer to get a
...more to come

Purple Cone Flower

Balloon flower

The tiniest butterfly I have ever seen.
It's probably not called a butterfly

I threw seeds in by the mailbox,
a few happy ones came up

Queen Ann's Lace taking over

 Spring is just around the corner and it's just about time to plant some seeds indoors!  Time to get the seed catalogs out and start planning!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Oatmeal -- edited

I had to go down to my freezer to get this recipe to share.  Although my sister has blogged about oatmeal and claims to have the BEST oatmeal,  http://homesteadingatredtailridge.blogspot.com/2011/01/best-oatmeal.html I like mine just fine. I should do things a little more purist, but then I might not do them at all.  I got this recipe from my massage therapist Kathryn Rose from Massage Connection (http://www.massage-connection.com/). 

I have altered it to make it more user friendly for... me.  The BEST part about this oatmeal, is that I eat it every day.  Why?  Do I love oatmeal so much that I want to eat it everyday?  I much prefer Toaster Strudels if you want to know the truth.  But you eventually come to a point where you have to start making good decisions and grow up.  Just because your mother isn't there to tell you Toaster Strudel's aren't good for you isn't a reason to keep eating them.

With going Gluten-free a year and a half ago, that took my favorite Special K with berries out of the picture.  I REALLY like that cereal.  Then with my blood sugar getting a little higher, I realized that all cold cereal that is gluten free is not good for your blood sugar.

I had started eating oatmeal everyday when my cholesterol was borderline high.  High enough for them to want to send you to Cholesterol 101, but not high enough for anyone to do anything.  My cholesterol did go down, but I also went off of a bunch of migraine medicine that year - some of them known to raise cholesterol.

But really, it just comes down to making better decisions.  So instead of thinking about all the lovely things I would like to eat for breakfast, I just get out my oatmeal every morning. I have edited the recipe more to my liking, and instead of heating water on the stove I figured out a perfect timing for microwaving *gasp*.  Maybe I'll change my mind in the future about my edits, but for now it is keeping me eating it.

I have made it differently in the past.  Sometimes I like to add a sliced up apple and some cinnamon.  Sometimes I cut up a banana.  This week I am enjoying dried cherries.  Most of the time, I just eat it plain (probably because I can't think real clear in the morning).  I always sweeten it with a little stevia.

I just had a physical yesterday and got my blood work back and my cholesterol is just fine!  I blame it on taking bio-identical progesterone, since estrogen dominance is not good for your cholesterol.  But really every little bit helps and oatmeal is a step in the right direction.

So instead of thinking about it, I have just decided to do it.  Every day. 365 days a year (well ONCE in a while I have something different).

Just a final disclaimer:  I am aware of oatmeal being questionable for celiac disease.  I don't have it, but have chosen to use it in my gluten free diet.  I am aware that my way of doing things isn't as purist as it should be, but when you take baby steps, you make steady progress.

The Recipe (from my freezer because I keep it in a bag with all the ingredients):

  • 4 cups rolled oats (not instant)
  • 2 cups oat bran
  • 1 cup lecithin granules (emulsifies fat and keeps cholesterol soluble; prevents and dissolves stones, contains choline, necessary for brain and nerve function) (I find it at the nutrition store)
  • 1 cup flax seeds, ground (richest source of Omega 3 fatty acids: decreases blood pressure, cholesterol levels, inflammation and water retention)
I take 1/3 cup of this mixed together and 2/3 cups of water. I find this is enough for me and one spoonful left for Turk (my dog).  I also add a pinch of salt *gasp* because it tastes too bland without.  I microwave about 1 1/2 minutes. 

The above is my edited version.  The original also included:

  • 1/2 cup dried fruit (I like to add this later if I feel like it and for variety)
  • 1 cup seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, sesame) (I leave these out because *bleh*)
  • 1 cup raw unsalted almonds (I did this for a while, but prefer no nuts in my cereal and also prefer cashews, so I take a small handful of cashews and eat them while the cereal cooks)
  • 1 cup milk thistle seeds (regenerates new liver cells and is a potent antioxidant) (I leave this out because I don't have a readily available <close> source and I also take milk thistle every day)
The original cooking instructions are to use a 1/2 cup of cereal (this was too much for me) and add 1 cup boiling water, cover the bowl for 3-5 minutes.

All in all, I find this a very tolerable way to eat breakfast.  The dogs have my number and enjoy eating the last bite.  They also know exactly how long it takes me to make and eat it and I went way over my quota today in blogging about it while I ate.  Turk just rang the jingle bell on the door like he had to go out.  He didn't.  He was just wanting me to get up and remember that it was time to go for a walk and quit blogging.


Saturday, January 21, 2012

Walk the Dog: A Winter Trick

Winter Walking in full gear
I have been walking dogs in the winter time for almost 8 years.  My exercise before this was teaching 6 aerobic classes a week.  When I first quit, I enjoyed being outside and took up biking, but when we inherited Turk I only had so many hours in a day and started walking every day except Sundays.  As the years have gone by, I have learned a few walking tricks during the cold.  I figure I have earned the right to be an expert at this because I have paid the price.  I learn best when I can 'see' why I should or shouldn't do something. 

I have been tripped, slipped and hit my head (a lot), side-swiped (by a dog) in the middle of the road (yes I fell, and yes it was humiliating- the whole city of Kaukauna garbage crew saw it), cut off (and tripped), and dragged (very, very humiliating).  In all of this, I learn really fast.  My dogs have learned never to come to a dead stop to sniff something if we are in a slow trot.  I have learned that my peripheral vision is gone when I wear a face mask.  I think Turk learned that too.  They also know I mean business when I say "NO LUNGE".  After being dragged not once, but twice I was so mad at them that I kept them in check the whole rest of the way home and didn't let them pee on one thing!  They know now not to mess with mommy.

We have had dogs run at us, in fact it happened today.  I have learned to not be standing on ice when this happens and also not to get my dogs too close all the while keeping them on a tight leash.  Not too close because when a dog is coming at us, my dogs are not thinking or hearing me very clear and they will bite at anything that comes near them.  Turk got bit in the butt once and will not let it happen again.
Waiting for me
to get my winter gear on
Tazer has learned that lunging at the birdies in the bushes just to watch them all fly away is not acceptable anymore.  She started doing that on our walks and I didn't do too much until the day I was standing on ice when she did it.  She hasn't done it since.  In fact she kind of started doing it to the birds at the nursing home until that day on the ice.  Now she just looks at them like she knows it's that no lunge trick I am testing her on.  She won't even look at them now.

When I first started walking in the winter, I thought I was all set because I am from Wisconsin and we just have all that warm stuff to be outdoors naturally in our closets.  Some of this is true, but not all. 

Solomon Running Boots
Like a warm jacket.  I already had a nice Columbia jacket.  These things never wear out, you just get new ones when you are sick of the color.  I have never (ever) been cold in my Columbia jacket.  I also had Columbia boots.  They were really warm and comfortable... if you were ice fishing.  I tried walking one day in them and my feet hurt really bad.  There is no arch support and they weren't formed for walking.  So I spent some Christmas money from my mother-in-law on a pair of running boots.  I call them my Four Wheel Drive Boots.  They are light, warm and keep my feet dry... AND they have proper arch support.  They are the Solomon brand but they are going on 8 years old and I am sure I will have to move on to something new-fangled when I replace them.  They are still going strong though.

I have learned from early on that my hands have never gotten cold with deerskin mittens.  I think I got my first pair at the mall from a kiosk.  When they wore out, I must have searched for some place to buy them and found Bemidji Woolen Mills.  I believe I am on my 3rd pair from them.  I go through them every two years because of holding on to the dog leash.  Last year I was beginning to think maybe I was wrong about how warm deerskin mittens were because my hands were getting cold.  Now this year with my new mittens, I realize my hands were cold before because I had holes in them!  Ha, genius!

I don't know what changed this year, but my walking pants were not the same.  I used to have a pair of lined wind pants that I would wear leggings under.  That worked well, but now I do not know what happened to them.  I probably threw them away last year at the end of the winter and forgot I did that.  So this year I have replaced walking pants with stretchy yoga pants.  I tried two layers, but my bottom was f-r-e-e-z-i-n-g.  I complained to my husband who was out shopping after Christmas and bought me an early birthday present of winter running pants and some outer thick ones. (he even wrapped them up!) I told him how warm they were and he asked 'which ones did you wear?'  I said 'both!'  Of course, in looking a little on-line I am sure it would be no problem in the cold if I got a pair of $300 ski pants.  Not in the budget- I guess this is part of the trick - walking the dog in the winter on a budget.

Now the other day, he was going to go ice fishing with his brothers and it was too cold.  Ha, that sounds funny because in order to have ice it has to be too cold but too cold for ice fishing is below zero.  So instead of ice fishing, the brothers were going to Gander Mountain shopping.  Tony asked if I needed anything and I quick took stock because it is really weird that he is being so nice to keep me warm outside. (could it be he doesn't want the job of walking the dogs all winter?).  Every year I have been wanting to buy an extra face mask so I can wash one and not have to wear a stinky mask all winter.

I have gotten teased I don't know how many times about me wearing a mask on my walk.  People will say they saw me and how I was bundled up like I was in Antartica or something.  I don't really care when they do this because for one, they obviously don't know what it is like to walk outside 313 days a year for aprox. an hour each time.  I have two types of face masks: one that I call my close to 35* mask and my full face mask that sucks to my head.  My 35* mask has a face cover that is kind of loose, but if it gets a little chilly at least I have something to cover.  The full face mask doesn't leave any room for 'maybe it will get warm on my walk'.  Regardless of the style though, I need one so that I don't get windburn.  I have had that and it lasts for days and hurts!  My face would also be bright red for days, so I guess I can consider them 'beauty masks'.

So my husband came home with a full formed face mask.  I wore it today and it was perfect.  It also gave me a little more peripheral vision.  I suppose sometimes it does pay to upgrade.

I am always grateful when we have a year I don't have to wear ice cleats, but sometimes you just can't get away from the weather.  Tazer is afraid of the ice and I wish I could get her some cute little cleats.  She must have slipped once and got scared.  Turk is experienced with ice and has learned to walk around it or on the snow.  So I end up with one dog fending for himself and the other dragging, walking tippy toe.  They both do well when I yell "Ice!" and will slow down so as not to drag me across it.

So I wear ice cleats begruggingly.  Many years ago I was so proud of my ice cleats and was walking in the snow (and ice?) and noticed I only had one on my foot.  I backtracked my footprints a good half mile and found it.  Arg.  So now when I wear them I make sure they are sucked on tight.  I did notice also this year that they don't do my arch any good and they put pressure on the fibroma on the bottom of my foot.  So I am grateful for all the days I don't have to wear them, and grateful for the days when I need them that I have them.

And then we come to the dogs.  I think every dog besides breed has a different personality for the cold weather.  Turk is getting worse with age and doesn't like the cold at all.  In his younger years it didn't bother him too much.  Tazer, on the other hand will lay in the snow when it's zero!  Of course she has a LOT more fur than Turk.
This is from a couple weeks ago in the middle of winter!
She does not like being brushed and is a big baby when I get the brush out.
 So on today's walk, I don't know how many times I dug salt/snow out of Turk's paws.  He slows down and I ask him "Which one?"  He has learned.  He lifts one of his paws up.  I have to take my deerskin mitten off and that is why I wear the little stretch gloves underneath.  It must hurt or sting and he used to snarl at me.  Now he knows I am helping him, but will still show his teeth a little.  I tell him "No BITE" and he usually straightens up.

Tazer on the other hand gets snowballs in her hairy paws.  She starts slowing down and I pick each paw up and start digging them out.  This probably hurts a little because I am pulling her hair between her toes.  So when she is in pain she takes it out on poor Turk.  If a leash gets wrapped around her leg, she nails him.  Of course, he usually is a bully when walking and will just drag her the direction he wants her to go.  If he doesn't want to sniff somewhere, Tazey can't either.

So after todays walk, I may consider getting booties for both dogs.  Tazer has worn them numerous times for when she has injured her feet and she tolerates them well when she knows that's how it's got to be.  Turk might be a bigger baby, but is smart and may learn that a winter walk is much more enjoyable in his old age if he is dressed appropriately.

All in all I wouldn't give up walking in the winter.  It is a trick, but everything is so beautiful and the air is so crisp I will try to do this as long as I can.  The trick is in the gear!
Todays sighting on our winter walk

Friday, January 20, 2012

Weather According to: Tazer

Contrary to Turks internal thermometer,
Tazer doesn't seemed to bothered by the zero degree temps.
She is doing her 'job' and watching for any deer that may
wander into our yard
Tazey, don't you want to come inside?
She only came in on command.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Turks Weather: BOO

Attention: These pictures are not of abused animals
like in the pathetic ASPCA commercials.
No, this is how Turk looks when he is bored out of his mind.
Today we couldn't go for a walk because it's below zero.
Their tootsies freeze up when it's this cold.
and so he naps all day,
knowing that it is too cold
because he is getting older and wiser.
(he is hating having his pic taken here)

Wise enough to know that he needs to do his job quick
when he is outside.
I always watch them carefully when it is this cold
because they drop fast if they are out a second too long.

Tomorrow's another day!

My Hope Is You

It's been an interesting last few days... well not really.  Actually I've been pretty blah, had some appointments and on top of all that: I had to WORK.  So besides the blahs, I had my 4th dental appointment on Monday morning.  I replaced the 3 fillings I had that were metal.  After getting my bite evened out a little more, I also mentioned to the only dentist I've had in my adult life that the wisdom tooth he redid had a really wide space and was catching my whole meal and very uncomfortable.  I would floss and floss and still not be able to get the food out.  So he suggested that he redo it for free.  I used to be ashamed of being a pain in the butt, but I'm not anymore.  So now I don't think he even left a space... well not really, but it's good now.  I think I'll send him a note and thank him and tell him that I don't even have to floss anymore!  Ha Ha.

I spent Monday afternoon getting my hair beautified.  What a process!  Then Tuesday I was supposed to drive 25 min to my acupuncture appointment and we were getting snow.  I wasn't about to pass my apt. up so I got in a little earlier.  It all worked out.

So between blah and busy, I haven't had much to say.  That can only mean that when I do feel like talking again, I'll have lots to say!  But as one thing leads to another (especially on the internet) I came across Third Days song My Hope is You.  I have always loved this song.  I think when this came out, I was just starting to actually read my Bible and when I found that this song is basically Psalm 25 I was in awe.  In awe that these song writers can follow their God-given talents and make the Bible come alive.

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul,
in you I trust, O my God.
Do not let me be put to shame,
nor let my enemies triumph over me.
No one whose hope is in you
will ever be put to shame,
but they will be put to shame
who are treacherous without excuse.
Show me your ways, O Lord,
teach me your paths;
guide me in your truth and teach me,
for you are God my Savior,
and my hope is in you all day long.
-Psalm 25:1-5


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Turks Weather: It may be above zero, but 17 is cold and I'm old

This could be my weather forecast, but I have too many warm clothes to complain.  I have been toasty warm with my deer skin mittens and new winter walking pants my husband bought me this week.  I consider 17 to be a perfect walking temperature.  It is far enough from 0 at least.  When the temperature is below zero, you can't walk the dogs.  Their feet freeze up really, really fast and I know for a fact that I can't pick one up and carry them. 

With this late onset of winter weather, Turk is seeming to not have adjusted.  This morning we were clearly taking the 'Water Walk'.  They know the names of the walks, they know that I changed my bed  sheets today.  That can only mean it's Saturday and on Saturday we go on the 'Water Walk'.  But as we headed out, Turk's little internal thermometer told him we should shorten it and instead of us going right, he pulled for the 'Short Walk'.  He wasn't hard of hearing and he wasn't wishy washy about it.  He definitely wanted to take a shorter walk.  So we did.

I have a red jacket I may start putting on him.  The problem I run into is when he wants to drop and do snow angels.  I also anticipate a little teasing on Tazer's part.  They let each other know when they look stupid.  In fact the other day I went into the piano room to get a tissue before our walk and always close the french doors to keep the furnace from kicking in when we open the door.  As I was getting ready, I saw Turk standing in the hall with his ears up and wagging his tail.  I looked to see what he was looking at and there was Tazer 'stuck' in the piano room.  She could push it open with her nose, but somehow she doesn't think of that.  When I let her out, she tore into Turk she was so embarrassed.  So this is what I am wondering will happen to Turk if I put a red jacket on him.  This would maybe be the equivalent of pink bunny jammies from the movie The Christmas Story.  Maybe I will get him some little booties too!  Ha. 

All I know is that in dog years, Turk and I are about the same age.  I also know that I am dragging my feet getting ready in the morning on these cold mornings.  Turk steps carefully off the couch instead of taking a big jump.  Maybe he needs deer skin mittens and an uber lined bottom warmer!  I think I will start with the red jacket.

Out with the Old, in with the New...all year long

I love changing my fireplace mantel
every new season
And so the celebrations have ended and we are all sitting around bored.  Well, I would love to be bored. Christmas may be the last big holiday in your book, but our celebrations just keep coming.  Since Christmas, we have had my daughter's birthday on the 1st, Christmas with my husbands side of the family on the 7th, my son-in-laws birthday on the 8th, my husbands birthday on the 10th.  Next week on the 16th is our anniversary, and THEN maybe I can think about starting a new year! 

So it's been a bit of a rollercoaster ride like always.  On top of that, I have had hormones that also have been like a rollercoaster.  One day I am focused and have a plan, the next I feel like crying and feel so useless (as in getting anything done).  I pour a Coke (I only want one when my hormones are bad) and drink two sips.  I start a sentence and can't remember the rest.  I have a thought and when I open my mouth to say it, I can't remember anything I was thinking.  I bring my camera case along on my walk with no camera in it.   I wear warm jackets on hot (winter) days and cold jackets on cold days.  My hormones feel a lot like Wisconsin weather.  50* one day and 20* the next. 

But despite all of my (imagined) woes, I am having no headaches in between *scheduled* headaches, in fact I didn't get a headache AT ALL when I normally would this week!!!!!  I am sleeping a bit better at times which makes the times I don't unacceptable now.  On the days I feel blah, I am staying away from facebook which seems to drag me down.  I don't mean that it is bad, but there is a lot of negative and when my moods are crashing I just don't need that (so please tag me if there is something positive you want me to see! ;-).  Not everything is negative, but the busy-ness of facebook is just too much for me lately when I probably really need to spend some time being quiet.  Reading blogs on my reading list on the other hand, is encouraging and uplifting. 

I actually love New Years and resolutions contrary to the latest research that says not too many people make them and hardly anyone keeps them.  I do.  But I don't make vague resolutions like 'lose weight'.  If I really wanted to lose weight, I would back up and look at my eating and exercising habits and then go from there.  And yes, I would like to lose a few pounds, but for me I am already eating what I think I should, exercising what I can.  So what is keeping me?  I know that my hormones being off is not helping my weight at all.  I lost 5# last month eating exactly like I always do (pretty much like a bird- not because I have so much will power but because my appetite is yucky).  I think what happened was for a week or so, my hormones were working together.

So I back things up even more.  I have read about some things that can mess up your endocrine system and although in my mind I think I am doing a lot, there is always room for change.  Getting rid of inflammation, keeping my blood sugar in check (and sometimes it just does what it wants), putting less in my body that is known to cause problems.

I have come across a few things in the past months and one of them is canned tomatoes.  Evidently the spray they use inside the can gets into tomatoes because of the acid in the tomatoes.  This is considered an endocrine disruptor.  I am going to plan on having a few more tomato plants next year so I don't have to depend on canned tomatoes.  It's hard because you can get them so cheap.

Another thing I have come across is the benefits of green tea.  I drank a lot more of it last year when my stomach was so off I couldn't even handle coffee.  I personally don't like green tea- at all.  I think it tastes like grass.  But I do have an abundance of peppermint tea from my garden, so I like to mix them together and then I don't even need a sweetener.

What has made me think about what goes onto/into my body is progesterone cream.  I had tried this before and didn't notice any change.  Now that I am taking a prescription of bio-identical progesterone, when I have extra symptoms I will use a little of the cream and it does help.  Within hours.  This has made me think about all the lotions and creams and perfumes that I 'injest'.  I didn't know about fingernail polish, but now within the last couple months I have read articles on the chemicals in this.  Just when I was in my second year of painting my toenails in the summer!

I had tried the deodorant 'stone' thingy and maybe didn't use it right and gave up.  I happened to need new deodorant and while at Walgreen's came across a roll on that didn't have the chemicals in it.  It works!  I am amazed at the label that says it is recommended by breast centers.  This makes me wonder that if you wait to get breast cancer, they will then recommend that you don't use the regular deodorants?!  I just don't get this that they don't just ban something they know is helping you get breast cancer.  I know it is more complicated than that, but I am not going to wait for the FDA to get their act together.

So I have started a couple new habits for the New Year.  Baby steps is what I am finding works the best.  I used to be more of an all or nothing type person, but I suppose the older you get the more you see how the little changes are the biggest sometimes.  So out with the old (bad for you) habits, and in with the new (baby step habits)!  All year long!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Turks Weather: Watch for salt/snow between the toes depending on your breed...

We finally got our snow!  I was thinking on our walk that we only have about 2-3 months or so to go!  Turk has a lot less hair for protection than Tazer, so he gets salt in his toes a lot easier.  It only happens right after a snow storm because of the new salt on the road.  He will usually slow down and when I look, he is holding one paw up.  He knows from all these years that it's what we do: I take off my big mittens and rub the snow/salt out from between his toes.  He doesn't like it but has learned to accept it.  So we did this around 3 different times this morning.  We dodged as much salt as we could.

Tazer on the other hand, has very hairy paws.  I've considered getting them trimmed in the past, but it is what keeps them protected from the salt.  But if we walk a long time in new snow, it will start balling up and then she will just drop.  Then I know it is time to dig snowballs from her toes.

Some other animals that didn't have a problem with the salt:

A ducky treadmill?
This is what the ducks do for the sheer fun of it.
Or is it exercise? 
They are swimming upstream in a very strong current.
This seagull saw the dogs coming
and wanted to take his dinner with him

All in all it was a great winter walk this morning.  The snow is great!  Just don't go barefoot, or you will have the same problems and then some.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Turks Weather: A good day to be mauled


Today we walked a little later than usual and we hit recess time at the middle school.  A couple kids came up to the fence and wanted to see the dogs and then pretty soon we had a mob of kids!  Here we are into the 2nd week of January and the kids were dressed like it was spring!

Turk loves meeting people on our walks because that means more petting.  Actually he prefers being mauled - lovingly.  When they have had a long, quiet day and want some attention, Turk will just wait for me to literally lay on top of him and rub his belly.  This is why we had to get another dog because he loves rough play.  This is also why I have to wash everything I wear daily whether I made it dirty or not. 

Tazer on the other hand does not like or need to be mauled.  I think because she takes her purpose in life seriously and has to secure the area and she can't do that if I am holding her down.  So she will just stand in the background while Turk gets his lovin'.  And she smiles.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

12th Day of Christmas

Gramma and Kyle

Christmas Day and visiting.  We visited my husband, Tony's mom in Green Bay and then swing around to our hometown, Shawano for the rest of the family.  With the kids all being older and not always around, it's not often one of the grandkids gets by the grandparents.  Our son Kyle was home during Christmas and traveled with us to the family gatherings. 

When Gramma opened the door for us and she saw Kyle, her face lit up and she said "Kyle!"  She was SO happy to see him.  We visited a while and when we were ready to leave she told Kyle:  Always remember you have your Gramma, well I won't be here always, but remember I love you.

She doesn't always remember things lately.  She tries to feed us double meals when we are there sometimes.  But she remembers what is important.

Turk's Weather: So many new trees, only one bladder

Although the weather hasn't been anything special lately, we have had some great walks with warmer winter weather.  But today's walk was a little stressful for Turk because of the season...every other house had a Christmas tree out on the curb.  He needs to keep his territory in check, so he had a lot of work to do.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

11th Day of Christmas

Tazer enjoying the snow falling
Lights and timers.  This time of year is so dark, that I really appreciate the lights of Christmas time.  I try to keep them up as long as possible.  I have even kept my lights in the back yard on all through January.  No one can see them except me and I don't feel like it's so dark and gloomy on these short days. 

I also enjoy the lights of the Christmas tree and garlands that I have through the house.  I used to take my Christmas tree down on January 1st until I had a baby on that day.  Since then we have had birthday celebrations on that day, so I decided that I would leave my tree up through Epiphany (Jan. 6).  I know everyone has their own traditions and although I used to get everything all cleaned up on the 1st day of the year, I now enjoy seeing the lights for as long as I can.

Christmas Drive home- Days are getting a little longer