Saturday, May 9, 2009

Vacation Time....

It looks like our vacation in Colorado is back on! With the $400 repair work on my car and limited funds, our trip was uncertain. Then I cried and stamped my feet a bit and told Irv, "But I have to go on vacation!!!!" and now our trip is back on. I'm kidding......sort of. :)

I know that spending money right now isn't a very smart thing to do with the economy the way it is right now. We don't have a financial safety net to catch us if we fall...but each year I count on that trip. I count on it for time away, time with Irv, time with nature and time with Matt.

When our kids were little we rarely took vacations. We went to the Dells once or twice and were given a family trip to Disneyworld as a gift from Irv's employer at the time. Those were the only vacations we had back then. In more recent years, we have been to Colorado a couple of times and last year we went to Virginia to visit Michael and Bernadette.

I love packing up the car and getting in and just driving off. It's such an awesome feeling. I would definitely be one of those people that could hop in a car and drive around for months...wherever the road took me.

This year the road will take us back to Colorado, but this time to Telluride where we have never been. Telluride is a small town in the San Juan Mountains, surrounded by 13, 000 foot peaks.

I know a lot of people hate driving anywhere, but to me it is a wonderful part of the trip. I find it such a special time where Irv and I have hours (24 of them each way this trip) to just chat and plan and dream. I know Irv...the non-morning person, loves listening to me, the morning lover, chattering at 5:00 a.m.

The scenery is great for part of the trip and awful for part of it...I won't mention that big long state that starts with an N and ends with an A that is so flat and ho-hum where all you see are cattle...because I don't want to offend anyone. I'm sure it's a wonderful state. Most of northern Illinois isn't too pretty either. I just like the change of scene, no matter what it is.

I told Matt to find enough to keep us busy for 5 full days, and so far I know we will be kayaking down the beautiful San Miguel River that flows through town and visiting one of hot springs in the area, and I am sure we will be horseback riding in the mountains as well.

Ah.......vacation dreaming.

Friday, May 8, 2009

A Fun Way To Spend A Day

I was talking to someone at work today about my youngest son Matt's plans for this weekend. He will be camping and rock climbing. She said, "At least you don't have to worry about him being in an avalanche for a while." How true. That is my "winter worry". In the spring, summer and fall, I only have to worry about him falling off the side of a mountain!

Actually, Matt is very careful when he is enjoying the great out of doors. He isn't reckless, and he doesn't goof around. He knows that one little mistake could cost him his life, and he values his life too much for that.

This weekend, Matt and his friends are headed to Independence Monument near Grand Junction, Colorado. According to the web, they will hike 40-60 minutes to get to the site where they will climb. The ascent takes anywhere from 3 to 5 hours depending on your skill level. Then after celebrating on the top of the big "rock", it takes another 2 hours to descend and then the 40-60 minutes to hike back to your car. The height of the "rock" is 350 feet.

The red line on the second photo shows the route most people use.

You can get an idea of the height if you look at the last picture and you realize that these climbers are at the very end of the climb....that little part of the rock on the top that kind of juts out. Then you look at what they already climbed and you get a better idea of just how big that "rock" really is!

Matt is so excited. Sunday is his 26th birthday and he can't think of a better way to celebrate.

(Have fun, be safe and take some awesome pictures Matti. I love you!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Beyond Happy

Do you ever days where you just feel outright awesome? I'm talking about get up and you feel so good that your step feels lighter, you find yourself smiling for no particular was one of those days for me. Around 9:00 this morning I even stopped and asked myself, "Why the heck are you so happy today?" Since I talk to myself a lot, I even answered back saying, "I have no idea!"

I am a very positive and upbeat person and I am happy most days, but there are days that just feel different, and those days seem to be happening more and more often for me.

I feel at peace, clear headed, and so comfortable that it's almost, do I deserve to feel this good?

I have been trying for a while now to learn to live a calmer and more peaceful life, so maybe it is working in ways I had not expected.

I am a happy person, but I am also "wired" and overly anal as my children say. I never sit still and have to doing something or more than one something all the time.

I mentioned before that I started forcing myself out of my workshop by 9:00 p.m. so I can lay in bed with a book, a Sudoku puzzle or paper and pen. That has been transforming for me, and now I don't have to force myself any more, I look forward to it.

I've pretty much given up on T.V. as well. I got tired of all of the violence that saturates the airwaves. I'm actually down to two shows, American Idol and The Amazing Race along with some Cubs games and occasionally some golf if Tiger is doing well, and that's it.

I really think the changes I've made are allowing me to really be me, and I think that is what's bringing days of unexplained joy.

We are all here inside our's just a matter of clearing out what we don't need and allowing ourselves to just "be".

Thank you Eckhart for some lessons learned!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Craft Show Question

Well, we are getting down to the nitty gritty for my first craft show. I told you before I don't waste a minute of time right now as I work my tail off to increase my inventory, tag and price items and package them up. This morning at 6:15 before I left for work I was pricing the 33 awesome cake stands I have done for the show! I have coasters and switchplates and pin cushions and home decor and photos and cards and bookmarks. I will finish the pillows as soon as my sewing machine gets back from the repair shop. It decided to not function properly this past weekend....great timing! Am I upset....nope! I have plenty of other things to do until it gets back this weekend. Then it will be the mad dash to get all of the pillows done for the show!

I've been reading everything I can about what payment methods people use at shows. I think we talked about this before. I will not be offering credit cards, but I am undecided what to do about checks. People say that not a lot of people ask, but what if they do? Do I want to take checks? It makes me a bit nervous.

It also said to scope out the nearest ATM so you can suggest that to people as well. That sounds like a good idea. If you do shows, do you take checks?

We are going to set up the canopy again this weekend and put the two five foot tables in there and the shelf and the little table and the check out desk and the pillow display and see if it's all going to fit! It fits really nice on my scale drawing, but we will see when it's the real thing.

My son Matt sent me an awesome power point today that I want to share with you, but I have no idea how to get it on here. It's about plastic water bottles and it is a real eye opener. It was sent as an e-mail attachment. I saved it to my desktop, but when you click on it, it just opens it up and there is no link or anything. If anyone knows anything about that stuff, let me know so I can share it with you.

Well, Irv has dinner ready....what a sweetie he I have to go. Idol is on in an hour and this is the first week where I am going to be a bit sad no matter who gets sent home. :(

Have an awesome evening!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Car Problems Part 2

Remember when I told you that the kid where we get our oil changed said our trans was leaking? Then we took it to the dealer where we bought the car and they ran a diagnostic test and said it was the power steering and not the trans. Remember how they were going to charge us $1000 to fix it and then decided to "cut" the price and that price was still more than our mechanic charges? Then we had to pay the dealer $100 for the Diagnostic test whether we had the work done there or not because the problem we had was not something that was under warranty.

Well, we paid them their stinkin' $100 and had the car fixed at our own mechanic. When we picked it up, he said that it was a problem with the power steering, but that the trans WAS leaking fluid! Irv called customer service at Toyota and because we didn't have our car serviced when Toyota recommends and because the car was over that part of the warranty, there was nothing he could do. We get our oil changed regularly, but we have never ever taken any of our cars in for the recommended service that always ends up costing you $500...and we have never had a problem with any of our cars because of it.

So, Irv took the car to our local Toyota dealer where we know one of the service guys. He checked it out FOR FREE and said, "Yep, the trans is leaking."

Irv is picking up my repaired car....repaired under the trans part of the warranty so it is FREE.

Tomorrow I will be writing a nice little letter to the dealer where we bought the car telling him that I REALLY want to believe that it was just a little mistake on their guy's part...the fact that he could only find a $1000 non-warranty problem and didn't happen to see the warranty trans problem that everyone else saw.....and I WANT MY $100 BACK!


Monday, May 4, 2009

I Finished It!!!!

I finished "The Power of Now" by Eckhart Tolle the other day. Wow! Quite an amazing book. Some of the things he talked about I was already not living in the past. He just put things into such a different perspective that he really made me take a look at my life and my entire thought process.

I will say that the book was very difficult to read. Sometimes I wondered if he was speaking a foreign language. I mentioned before that some of his sentences were so long that by the time I got to the end of the sentence I had forgotten what he said at the beginning and had to back and read it all over again.

What I did take from the book is that I need to slow down. Stop looking back, but stop looking forward as well. Having memories of days gone by is nice and planning for the future is okay, but neither is acceptable when it means forgetting about today....because really, today is all we fact, this moment is the only thing we can really control. Take care of this moment and the rest will take care of itself.

I've already started his book, "A New Earth". When I finish it, I am going to get "The Power of Now" on CD and listen to it in my car while I commute. There were a number of areas of the book that went right over my head. I'm thinking that hearing the words might bring a better understanding.

If you are caught up in the rat race and are continually wondering if there is more to life than the constant worry, regrets, fear and stress...I highly recommend "The Power of Now."

I'll let you know how the new book goes. Have a good one!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Words of Advice

No matter how tempting it may be, no matter how big of a hurry you are in, no matter if your bathroom sink is right across from your workshop, no matter, no matter, no matter what.....DO NOT USE YOUR BATHROOM SINK TO RINSE GLUE OUT OF BRUSHES AND SPONGES AND NOT COMPLETELY WIPE IT DOWN EACH TIME......because no matter how good you think Soft Scrub might does not work on glue! :)

Have a wonderful Sunday everyone!

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