Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Crazy lazy and hazy days of summer

Snuggles at the fire pit before bed
We have been completely at odds with the weather. One day it calls for rain and then the next it calls for sun or vice versa We still have hay to cut but our painting and cleaning is almost done. This summer because we were not getting summer hot haying weather I decided to paint the deck and the posts. Once we got started well then everything needed a tlc. Before we knew it we were or I was on a roll. Somedays Jussi would come home ready to rest and I had a huge honey do list. He has been a good sport and likes what we have accomplished. So as we take some vacation time we pray that the weather will continue to shine down upon us in August so that we can alas put our hay in the barn. Happy Summer will update as we can, still have tons to say but just can't stand being inside when the sun shines. Later...C
These pictures didn't load yesterday sorry..this is the summer reno

Built a new fire pit out the back, where we had fallen trees earlier this spring

Painted decks and posts for over a week...we have a lot of deck

A friend gave us the playhouse aka fort...and our granddaughter and a friend had their first sleepover last night

I love that deer do not eat foxgloves

Moved the pond and re installed my antique sink, love it

planted more ferns this spring and found a new home for the hammock

No reno here just a summer hair cut but we love our Tucker.

Airpark walk with T dog
Swimming at the river with the kids

Monday, July 18, 2011

If the walls could talk...tales of the kitchen

After 14 years in our house, it is past time to paint the kitchen. Every other room has been re done, or at least touched up, so the summer of rain is prompting us to home repairs. Do you know what a history our kitchen has? In our kitchen we built a family, we welcomed children and young women for a season, we laughed, we cried, our son in law asked us permission to marry our daughter, we held birthday parties for many, drank coffee while discussing life in Haiti and prepared a home that is inviting and comfortable. The greatest gift for us is our relationships and in our family. Many a time we invited youth for events and our house not only was filled with mud caked smiling teens, but helpful clean up the dishes teens. We had times when tears and memories were shared and dozens of pictures were brought out and spread around with echoes of "Do you remember this ...Those were my favourite pants...What a geek...and look how cute I was a baby, which usually met with rounds of ...I was cuter.
The kids growth have left us with memories too precious to put a price on, they have baked their first meals, studied for drivers tests, colored maps for school and sang snippets of songs they had in their heart. Their dad well his famous claim to fame in the kitchen was never cooking but once he made pancakes in boxers, t shirt and a hard hat...yep, got each of the kids off guard, but they loved Finnish pancakes so much they put up with corny get up. Me well I have rolled it, sealed it, and marked it with a b, with two generations, and with my best friends. From pies and cookies, to won ton and perogy making parties, to crazy cakes with plaid stripes for a theme party our kitchen has been the hub of our home. Not always clean and shiny, but a happy place to pop your elbows down and help yourself to the fridge. So as I come to the painting portion of the kitchen, I realize I will need to copy and repaint the Wall of Fame. Over the years so many have left their name and height and when I started to write it all down, it brought back so many memories. It truly was a blessing to see the physical growth of the kids, but to know the spiritual and maturity that had come from within these young people to now, was nothing short of a gift. Thank you Lord for allowing us to have a house that was a meeting place, a gathering place, a safe place, and a full home of love and laughter. I will paint but I will transfer the Wall of Fame, so that when the second generation of kids look up they can see how tall their mom or dad was when they were their age. That part I am looking forward too.....if knew how to make a smile I would put one here!

Adam, Jim C, Mark, Jake, Kato, Maverick,(tallest) Randy, Kristina, Meghan, Alison, Tor, Michelle, Kelsea, Kelsi, and Adele, from 2002 to 2006, forever etched on our walls.
Avalon, Astrid, Auntie Kat, Jason, Grandpa, Daniel, Alaina, Alexandra, Anika, Husdon, (PS Naomi I have lots of numbers for H if you need any) Mercedes and Emmerson, you too have a forever place on the Wall of Fame..
Josiah, just cause you are the smallest, and oh so too will grow and be measured on Nana and Papa Jussi's wall.
Rachel and Ryland Nana and Papa have celebrated so many birthdays, fun times, and are amazed at how fast you grow. What does your Mom feed you?
Rachel 2001 40 inches to 2011 58 inches.....Junior High oh ee vay
Ryland 2007 31 inches to 2011 46 inches...Kindergarten this year yahoo
Carly you have grown into a beautiful young woman from 2002  59 inches to 67 inches in 2011
Kelsey and for Nick when we moved into our new home, Kelsey you were ten years old, and Nick was thirteen. Crazy how time flies. You have shared our home with Carly, Victoria, Kelsea, Michelle, and little Corey, thank you for allowing us to share our home with so many others.
Kels you started out at 54 inches ad when you left home you were 66 inches. You grew an entire foot in 8 years. Do you remember you wanted your birthday party in the new house, so we moved in with only plywood floors, a microwave, a bathroom, toaster and some mattresses on the floor. We all lived up stairs and finished the house as we went along. We so miss the crazy girl sleepovers, and the laughter that echoed late into the night from your room. When the house was full of dresses and wedding stuff, it all seemed surreal, but you got married and we are thankful for Jason, but we really do miss having you at home. Your smile lights us our lives.
Nick you were always tall, you started out a little over five feet at 13 years old, 63 inches. Then by the time you left home, the last time, you were over six feet. I remember thinking are your feet every going to stop growing, but you eventually caught up and have always been tall. Surpassing Jussi in 2002 at eighteen. You left home for college and university after only five years in the house, but the ceilings have been graced with the amazing sound of your voice singing from the loft. We really do miss you and your sense of humor and we miss the singing from the rooftops!
Special little people Emily and Brynn who measured themselves for the six months as they rented our house, while we were in Haiti.
We are so thankful for all that has transpired around the kitchen table, and the fridge (in our family) and look forward to the future and filling it with more love and more laughter.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

God is My Umpire

Sorry to all you faithful blog readers for my writers cramp the last few weeks. I had some medical testing and I had the end of the school year and everything went well but it took the wind out of my sails for a wee bit. We have been waiting on the weather to get the hay started and it seems like trickery. Each time we seem to get four days in a row...then the chance of showers hits the fourth day. So if you are the praying people can you lift up a little prayer and ask for some hot, windy hay days. We need nine days to get it all in the barn, preferably in two different runs. We have until the end of the month, then we are off an adventure to Finland, home to my husbands family,  for the honeymoon, fifteen years later but worth the wait! More about the adventure in the blogs to come.

Today and in the last few weeks I have been challenged. In these challenging moments I have not been all that strong, I have cried, felt defeated and moped around feeling lost and without direction. I guess I always wanted to be a tougher nut but it is something that still works for the good and for the bad...I am a wear my heart on my sleeve person. If you had to ask me how I was,  I may just have burst into tears, so I stayed away from people. (okay not the best strategy...but it worked) Now as I weave my way to health, and contentment I get the picture of a ball game and Laurel and Hardy's who is on first...I was running the bases of daily life but I was running in circles. I allowed worry to take over and no matter how many times I ran for the finish line, I kept getting lost. Sound familiar? I think this happens often to us, I know even a shopping trip can have me all over the place looking for something and then giving up before I found the item I was looking for.
I didn't want to give up so I persevered and with my solid rock husband and a few friends I am able to say, crisis averted.  My tests were all positive results and my million other things that all hit at a time when I was vulnerable, each in its time has been walked through, dealt with, shelved or conquered. Am I feeling emotionally powerful? Not yet, but that brings me to the umpire part of my blog.
When you have a type A personality like me and a people person, you tend to look to others for reassurance, props, perks, whatever you want to call it. At the same time you feel many things are personal when often they are not, so add the "take it personally" plus "looking for affirmation" and that equals when the going gets tough the weak go no where LOL. So feeling judged for your weakness creates a whole new set of equations. See my demise LOL.
Anyway I can write about it because I am able to see it was not about being judged it was about how I perceived I was being judged. God is my umpire he makes the calls in my life, and he has not called me out of the game yet,  so I am still standing on the base, looking for direction. Run, stay, or take a chance. I married a take a chance kind of guy, and I am stay safe and wait. Funny how that happens. So what is the job of the umpire?

The umpire is the person charged with officiating the game, including beginning and ending the game, enforcing the rules of the game and the grounds, making judgment calls on plays, and handling the disciplinary actions.

I love that God is my UMPIRE!  Can you imagine anything better? He controls the beginning and the end, He allows fair play and for errors, He guides and protects, and allows us to learn life's challenges by living and taking chances, and by calling us safe. He lets us play the game and watches our moves, being careful to keep us within the bases and not running amok. (running in a frenzy) I may have hit some home runs in my kids, and Jussi, serving in Haiti, working with kids with special needs but I am not done at the bat! I am ready to see where this next year will take me and I know there will tough plays, there will be highlights, there will be replays, and most likely some foul balls, so "put me coach I am ready to play! "
My pity party is over Praise the Lord. I am so thankful for the craziness of life, the unpredictability I can see after the fact. Lord teach me to trust in you and look for your signal. Batter up!