Sunday, September 30, 2018

Retreat 2018

I have been at retreat since Thursday afternoon and will head home today.  Friday night I went home for awhile, and last night Far Guy came over to have dinner with us... Andy’s Award Winning Ribs, corn bread,  potato salad (my recipe) and root beer floats.
I am working on Christmas Cards.

These flowers here are surviving, Far Guy reports that my flowers froze on Saturday morning and there were snow flakes in the air at home.
Far Side

Saturday, September 29, 2018

A Tough Week

It was a tough week…seemed to have lots of death…and tears.

One of my Aunt’s died the same day as Chance died.  Her funeral will be next week. It seems like a long wait…I think people are dying to get into the funeral home…a bit of dark humor on this Saturday.

I am away from home…usually I leave Far Guy and Chance and go to the Craft Retreat an hour away…many times they would come visit me there.  This time Far Guy will be alone.  He encouraged me to go…I can come back home anytime over the weekend.  Far Guy says the time away will do me some good.  He has a list of things that he wants to accomplish and he may join us for supper one night.

It may snow while I am away…I packed a winter coat.  The same women have been meeting at the same retreat for many years now…several mothers and daughters will be there.  It used to be mostly scrapbooking…but has evolved to what ever craft you want to work on…I will be working on our Christmas cards.


Photo from retreat last year

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Friday, September 28, 2018

Aunt Louise Laid To Rest

Tuesday morning was Aunt Louise’s funeral.  It was a very nice service with a luncheon afterwards….Minnesota funeral food; lettuce salad, scalloped potatoes, ham, dill pickles,  crusty bread and all kind of bars.

Aunt Louise was a heck of a bread baker we always enjoyed when she shared a loaf of bread with us.  I recall one day years ago when Far Guy’s Mom was alive Willard and Louise were visiting her in the Nursing Home and someone mentioned fresh bread…a little old lady came over and said “That is one thing I miss…fresh baked bread.”  Well you can guess that planted a seed in a bread bakers mind and a few days later fresh bread was delivered to that little old lady. Years later when Far Guy was at his Mom’s bedside for days…loaves of bread were delivered for him to bring home… comfort food from a special aunt.

After lunch we left town and drove the 15 miles to the cemetery…a number of cars pulled to the side of the road and waited for the procession to pass by.

Road Home

Funeral procession


Louises Funeral



Louises flowers

She was laid to rest next to her husband.  We have a plot in the same row as does Alaska Guy.  Family has to stick together.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018


We chose to follow Chance’s choice…he refused all food and water…even ice cubes.  He just wanted to lay outside.  We were very careful to keep a close watch on him and sit with him.  He was telling us that it was time and it was up to us to help him along.

We came to the conclusion that it was hopeless and we wanted him to die as peacefully as possible.  Thanks to a very understanding Vet that was possible…although he required a double dose of sedation…after the first dose we thought he was asleep but I moved toward the door and he woke up and lifted his head as if to say “Where are you going?”  The Vet said “People dogs are very loyal and will fight the sedation to stay awake and keep track of their people.” The second dose had him pain free and in a deep sleep and then other drugs were administered and he just stopped breathing…peacefully and in no visible pain.

We brought him home and buried him in the grave that was dug several years ago (October of 2015).  Far Guy dug it one day when Chance supervised…he was always a bit curious about that spot on the edge of the yard with the wooden cover…like he knew something…Border Collies are pretty smart.  Far Guy was certain Chance would die in the winter and a grave would be impossible to dig…we had five gallon buckets of dirt stored in the woodshop.

Shovel at rest

No matter how hard it is as pet owners we always have to do what is best for our pets and not what is best for us.

We are crying rivers…not because of our choice or Chance’s choice.  We miss the third member of our team…

Thank you for all the kind comments about Chance…he had many friends all over the world…if you are reading this then you were probably one of those wonderful people. Thank you for loving our dog!

Clay imprint from the vets office

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Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Wistful Wednesday : Chance

We were very fortunate to have a wonderful dog in our lives for a good long time.  Yet it never seems long enough.

Chance #4 Dec 26 2004

Dec 26 2004 shortly afer we brought him home with us after he chose Far Guy.

Chance and Gene (2)

He brought much joy into our lives everyday. He was singing for Far Guy!

I could play ball all night!  November 14 2013 (2)

He loved balls…especially the pink ones…and blue ones…fact is if it was a ball that was thrown he probably loved it. He would play ball outside or in the house…he didn’t care just as long as you threw it!


He was a loyal friend who would share everything…yes even his beloved balls, toys and his food and water dish with Miney and Little Elvis.  He loved it when they visited!

Chance and his pal 2013

Most of all he was Far Guy’s faithful companion.

He liked me well enough but he had a special bond with Far Guy. I think it was a “guy” thing.

2009 (2)

He tolerated me and my camera.  I think I must have thousands of photos of him.  Here you can see his big heart on his shoulder…he was loved by so many people!

Chance as good looking as ever 2012

Saying goodbye was hard…  we are incredibly sad, our hearts are broken.

connie blog headers-p0095

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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Last Aunt

It rained most of the day yesterday…and it wasn’t very warm either.

It kinda matched our mood.  Into every life a little rain must fall.  We stopped and picked out funeral flowers…yellow and light orange roses.  We attended the Funeral Home Visitation for Far Guy’s last Aunt….our flowers were there along with many others.  She loved flowers all of her life…and has many beautiful bouquets to mark her passing on. In her younger years her gardens were a sight to behold. 

I have heard that saying “If you love me bring me flowers when I am alive instead of when I am dead.”  I think she would have replied…I will take flowers when ever I get them!

Far Guy still has one uncle that is living on his Dad’s side of the family. He is now the “older generation” on his Mom’s side of the family.

Aunt Louise has struggled with health issues all summer…she has been in the Nursing Home since spring….now it is fall and she has died. She was 88 years old. We had a good visit with her in mid summer…her laugh was distinctive…we talked about her much loved husband who died in 2012 and her children.  She and her husband had seven children…one is Alaska Guy who is the same age as Far Guy.  He has been here most of the summer caring for his Mom. Sharon was here earlier in the summer…I missed seeing her…she and I were just a year apart in age and spent many childhood days together.

Rest In Peace Aunt Louise.

2 Timothy 4:7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.


Willard and Louise Abbott jpg

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Monday, September 24, 2018

Fall is falling fast

Ack the leaves…I did the 4th mulch yesterday and my husband says about 1/8 of the leaves have fallen…I was hoping he would say 1/4 of them are gone…maybe a big wind will come up and blow them away!  It was cool out…I should have worn gloves and a hat.

I finished packing up/straightening my garage…I still have a few odds and ends that I will try to sell online. I have a car full of stuff to recycle or donate.


Next door the Impatiens have made way for pumpkins and gourds.   I always wonder if the deer will eat them.

Decorating the wreath outside the door for Fall and changing the flag is on my list of things to do.

We have a busy week coming up and I am signed up to attend a retreat at the end of the week.  I will be working on our Christmas cards and a bead project. I have made a list.

Chance is holding his own for now…he has ups and downs…and so do we.

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Sunday, September 23, 2018

Cooler Weather

We are 60 degrees cooler than we were last week at this time.  Last Sunday it was 90F+ Saturday morning it almost was 36F.   Minnesota weather is always unpredictable.  At least it isn’t snowing.

Today I am packing up the remnants of my garage sale…it went well. I sold a number of items online.  Chance was the main greeter when he was allowed outside. 


Sometimes it is enough to be near the ball.

Poor fella is struggling again…but he perked up nicely when Odda visited and when a garage sale visitor brought their dog along.  Eldercare for dogs continues.

In between visitors I mulched leaves for the third time. 


The flowers are still thriving.

Bird Report: The Hummingbirds are gone and the feeders have been taken down.  Plump Robins were noted in the yard…they were feeding on grubs or worms…and then poof they were gone. Common Flickers visited our yard one afternoon.  Canada Geese can be heard honking when they fly between the fields and the lake.  We have Woodpeckers, Chickadees, Nuthatches…and a few obnoxious Crows/Ravens that visit our feeders.

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Saturday, September 22, 2018

High Bush Cranberries

The High Bush Cranberries are ready.  (Viburnum trilobum)

High Bush Cranberry fruit 

I really don’t have time to make jelly but I sure would like to. You can make jelly, jam or sauce from the berries.

Leaf identification; three lobed leaves with veins that are well defined.


The fruit is tart and tastes much like the true cranberries.

This one bush in our driveway may yield one jar of jam…maybe….jam is faster than jelly!  I would need to scout out more to make a batch.

I need more hours in my day…and it gets dark earlier everyday.  Welcome Fall I guess, but I am not quite ready for you.   The lawn was mulched for the second time yesterday 5-8 more times and then it will snow.

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Friday, September 21, 2018

The Birthday Surprise!

The birthday surprise was a surprise for both of us….Far Guy had no idea what thoughtful gift he was going to come up with…he was starting to panic.  I have to admit I might have enjoyed his panic just a tad.  He was so busy last week my birthday was the last thing on his mind.

Our daughter Jen showed up with a new machine that she had purchased…Far Guy then offered to purchase it from her… for me!


It is a fancy smancy die cutter.

No more hand cranking a die machine…this one has a motor and grabs the sandwitched die and the paper comes out perfect.

For our Christmas Cards this year I wanted a fancy die cut piece of paper to surround a stamped image.

Frames with the snowflake die

The machine does a marvelous job…this is a very intricate cutout…many tiny pieces of paper fall out all over!  If they don’t fall out then they are poked out.


It is a wonderful Birthday surprise!  Far Guy was off the hook…I was happy…and Jen can borrow it when ever she wants. It was a win win win situation.

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Thursday, September 20, 2018


I am older today. 

I was looking through some of my old birthday photos and this one made Far Guy laugh out loud. 

11 years old 1962

Me and my baby brother…ready to shoot the photographer.  Far Guy said “Too bad you didn’t keep that holster!”

Doncha just love the full skirt with itchy can cans underneath accessorized by a apron with it’s own towel…and a really strange haircut…no chance of those bangs getting in my eyes…and my shoe is untied.  I am holding a figurine of a Collie.

My Mom took this photo and she marked it 11 years old so the year would be 1962.

Far Guy and I will go to lunch today with my parents…at one of our favorite places.  I got new mulching blades for my lawnmower so I am really happy…and Far Guy got me a nice surprize too…quite by accident…but I really like it!  When he asked me what I would like for my birthday I replied  “ I know you will pick out a really thoughtful gift.”

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Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Wistful Wednesday: 1st Day of School 1967

This is a photo that my mother took on the first day of school.

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I was a Junior that year, my other baby brother would have been almost 7 years old and in 1st Grade and my baby brother would have been in 8th grade that year.

Looks like we have all the school supplies we need. This was way before book bags or backpacks.  My mother must have thought my other baby brother was going to grow some and those pants could be rolled down as needed.

I think that plant was called Gold Drops.  It was an old plant that almost everyone had in their flower gardens.

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Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Backwards Birthdays

Our youngest daughter started going backards with her birthdays …today she is 37 by her count and somewhat older by mine.

She was 18 days overdue.  Her husband asked me “ Why didn’t you wait a few more days and you could share a birthday?”  I replied “She was 18 days overdue.”  Far Guy said “ Good thing she was born when she was because someone was pretty cranky.”

Newborn Jennifer

The Doctor barely made it for her birth, she was born at 12:59 AM on a Thursday.  Of course I was there…Far Guy, the Doctor and  a Nurse.  Big Sister Trica was at our home with my baby brother…he was in college back then.

jen Birth certificate back (2)

Aww look at those little feet!  The Doctor was thankful to have her here and okay because I had been having some problems.  She was a tad overdone and had lost weight…she weighed 5 Ibs and 5 Ounces and was 19 inches long.  Her skin was all wrinkly…and she was born hungry!


Here she is…almost 37…by her count!

In August of 1979 I wrote this…Jennifer is becoming quite independant.  I told her “No cookies”  She said “Know what?  I am mad at you.”

The same year I wrote… Counts to 20, says her ABC’s  reads  to herself, she looks at the pictures and makes up stories.

Happy Birthday Jen!  We are proud to be your parents!

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Monday, September 17, 2018

Half a Wheel

We bought this half of a wheel in an antique shop in Baker Montana one summer.  We used to have a cow skull that went with it but a previous neighbor’s dog named Molly kept stealing it.   Eventually  it disappeared. (Molly’s Mom and Dad may have gotten tired of returning it.)


I used to put pots of flowers near it.  Now it is just a spot for weeds.

We had a busy Sunday.  Jen and Andy came over, we went out for lunch to kick off birthday week.  We stopped by Wallyworld to get a couple of cases of water when we had strong help…of course one of the workers in Wallyworld thought Blake was in the store and she got a little excited.  We use bottled water for coffee and then our coffee pot lasts a good long time! I drink coffee once in a great while and Far Guy cannot wake up without it.

I mulched the first batch of leaves in our yard…and so it begins.  Last year it was 7 mulchings…time will tell what it is this year.

I put a bunch of old landscape bricks for sale on a facebook marketplace and sold them and they were picked up…no more pile of bricks!  Cross something off the list!  Ah yes you actually have to make a list to cross something off.

My inside projects are kinda like the half a wheel…no big accomplishments.  I still have 22 Christmas ornaments to paint. 

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Sunday, September 16, 2018

Going Buggy

Had time during the garage sale to visit with some old and new neighbors and take a few photos.  The sale went well and I will add more “stuff” and repeat the sale next week.  Chance loved having company and exhausted himself greeting people just like in the old greenhouse days…we finally had to put him in the house so he could rest.

This week I will be attempting to weed out some “stuff” from Far Guys garage…if he hasn’t used it in 20 years then perhaps he should give it to me for the sale.


A grasshopper


A bee

I told Chance be careful where you are lifting your leg…the Sedum is a favorite spot of his.  It is also a favorite of the bees.  It seems to have thrived with his contributions.


Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’

I helped Far Guy set  up a spot where he and all of his classmates can upload and look at their photos.  What a struggle…not the most user friendly site so I am certain that just a few people will be calling for instructions.  Oh well it will keep him busy…I told him I just needed to be done when I added the photos I took…or I will be going buggy for sure.

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