Wednesday, May 29, 2019

3 Day Week-end+rain=R&R

Greetings friends,

I don’t know about you, but I love a shortened work week, there is just something about the extra day off. Of course I’m extremely grateful to all who have and continue to serve to protect us ( and I fell short of taking some home baked goodies to my fav local law enforcement….but I’ll remedy that shortly!)
Rod & I slipped away to our condo in Kellogg for a bit of R&R.  When you work in a highly structured environment there is something wickedly divine when you get to sip coffee without being mindful of the time.
Our fav place to sip coffee and watch the day begin
No rushing off to work or feeling like home related tasks were vying for your time. This past rainy week-end, I read quite a lot actually, we napped, watched movies, went for a walk, and met friends for dinner.  Pure bliss. We also had Rod’s 18 year old son, Zach and 2 buddies come spend a part of the week-end with us.  Oh those boys…. A mixture of sweet and hilarious.

With the start of summer officially on the books, I found that that a leisurely summer is going to be found in small snippets of time.  The summer has filled up and so quickly.   Rod & I have several dedicated days that will be spent with his family, mine and some blissful time on the boat exploring the San Juan isles.  I’m committed to working on writing every minute I can for this blog, Home & Harvest magazine and on my book.  I have serious day dreams of being able to afford a house on a lake where dedicated writing would commence. And having spent a wonderful Memorial Day week-end 2 years ago at my brother & sis-in-law's place on the lake only fuels the fire of want.  =)

This pic was from a couple years ago at my brother's place. The view from River & Edie's deck was fabulous

Lounging on the  dock with a book was divine
I have a stack of current magazines (yet unread)  that talk about summer…. and the headlines evoke images of people enjoying lazy days of lounging on a perfectly decorated porch and easy to prepare food for all those impromptu BBQ’s and picnics.  I love the idea of it, but it just doesn’t seem to happen like that though in my world.  What about you?  I’d love to hear your thoughts, so if you want to share, please email me 
at and tell me how you do it. So here’s hoping as summer unfolds, that you get to relish the time in ways that appeal to you.  Thanks for stopping by and if you enjoy the blog, please share it, and I love hearing from you too.   All my best, Gayle

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Another Day In Paradise

Just another day in paradise! (really it's me after a long day of playing in the dirt)
Happy Sunday!

A colleague and I had dinner the other night to catch up  and we had both promised each other the first nice day we had, we’d go celebrate and grab a beer after work.  Ha! Whatever were we thinking? Several of many first nice days came and went and she, like me lives alone on several acres, works full time and well…… when you live in the country, there is always a long list of tasks waiting.  I didn’t need to apologize for not making good on the sunny afternoon lounging over an adult cocktail, as she had the exact same mind set as me.  

My wheel barrow, shovel and rake are well used

So the first rainy day, I emailed her and said let’s get together!  Over dinner we compared notes on our lives, on our reasons why as single women, we  both deliberately chose to live in the county and how we cherish our little pieces of heaven.   We relish our time when we get our hands dirty and the hours spent behind a shovel, rake or garden tractor.   We agreed that country living is not for everyone (nor the faint of heart), and those that don’t live on acreage have any idea of the sheer amount of work it takes to keep up a place. I told her the first time I had met my mailman, I was in a dress, cowboy boots, a cowboy hat and was on my riding lawnmower.   I’m sure it was an unusual sight… but then again well ....if you know me, normal in my world is just a setting on the dryer.  So as he dropped off the package, he was being chatty and said something about how my husband I and keep our place so nice. I told him there wasn’t a husband, just me. He looked shocked, then recovered and said wow, that’s cool I guess. I guess the thought of a lone woman buying her own place and keeping it up was outside of his version of normal.  Lol
This red tractor is a signature piece of my "yard art"
When I bought the place two years ago, Rod wasn’t in the picture, but our creator knew what he was doing when our paths crossed.  Rod loves my place and we have spent many enjoyable hours working side by side.  For both of us, this is new having a yard work-mate, as his late wife didn’t like yard-work and my ex-farmer husband, didn’t either.  So we relish our times playing in the dirt together, having coffee in the morning on the new patio and deciding what new landscaping project needs to be done and then at the end of the day enjoying a cold beer.
Another sweet spot for morning coffee
Lately though, we’ve decided this thing called work is interfering with our time to play in the dirt as well as enjoy "other yet to be named adventures".   As we talk about what life looks like in a couple of years, we have no doubt in our minds that retirement looks inviting.

At any rate, I thought I’d give you a quick tour of what my place looks like and what keeps this girl (& Rod) happy. 

My other iconic piece of yard art and beside it I've started my lavender garden

More of my treasures, old bikes and buckets

The orchard! Rod trimmed up everything last Fall, 5 apple trees, 1 cherry, 2 plum, 2 pear, 2 peach trees.
A view from the orchard to the shop that Rod, I and his son Zach stained 2 summers ago. Rod has been insulating the shop... his needed "man cave" in the works!

A yard-sale find that now is yet another planter
Last of my yard-art that I had hauled from my Genesee  farm. This made the new place home

After the nasty juniper bushes were removed, Rod & I planted all sorts of plants, he put in a drip line to save on hours of watering.  Let me tell you that a cold beer after that day was a treat.
Last summer I had a garage built next to the house. Rod and I painted it. And for the record, he loves to paint
After the garage was built, there was a huge mud bog... so I hired a contractor to put in the patio.  Lazy days spent out here is what I envision retirement to look like.  I can hardly wait!

We christened the patio on Mother's Day this year

My little sweeties

And that's a wrap
As always, thanks for stopping by. Wishing you a great rest of the day and for me, well I'm taking  the advise the author who emailed me and suggested I read other women's memoirs to get a sense of their style and what appealed to me... so it's a work/pleasure sort of day, plus a little bit of bliss soaking up some sun.

As always, feel free to shoot me an email at  All my best, Gayle

Friday, May 10, 2019

Women - the 8th Wonder of the World!

Me in my in my imperfectly perfect place

A few years back, a group of us farm-wives were chatting about our lives and the ever-growing demands on our time, referring to family, jobs outside the home as well as the full time job of in the home and around the farm.  And I’ll never forget the comment one friend said, “I need a wife!!”  Meaning, she wanted a person who would be the behind the scenes fixer, the person who shopped, cooked, cleaned, did laundry, ran errands, and took care of all the details large and small to make life run smoothly.  Basically, to me, it sounded a lot like a personal servant. And I have to tell you it sounded absolutely divine.  The moment she uttered those words, we all stopped talking, looked at her in awe and agreed, we all needed wives!  

As Mother’s Day approaches, let us celebrate us as women.  We are amazing in our own right.  Let us celebrate the woman who kissed our scrapes and told us all would be well, the woman who helped make life as we grew up just a little bit better, the comfort of the company of your own kind that can laugh with you as well as commiserate the ups and downs of life.  We do so much, sometimes with so little and make it look effortless to the outside world.  I think women, and I mean all women are truly the 8th Wonder of the World, and I’m serious.  We are an amazing breed and we need to take the time to celebrate the beauty in each of us, in our lives.  Whoever you are, where ever you are as you are reading this, know that you are a unique and remarkable in your own wright.

Happy Mother’s Day to all, whether you are actual moms or not, remember to treat you like you would a child by making sure to nurture, care and protect you. And I’ll leave you with this quote that my friend, Vicki sent to me  that sums it up perfectly……There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful, than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection, to me that is the true essence of beauty ~Steve Maraboli

Wishing you a wonderful day to celebrate you!  And a blessed Mother's Day to all the women in my life who are extraordinary in my eyes.

As always, feel free to email me at , or leave a comment on the blogpost too.  All my best, Gayle