Help for the Winter Blues…

Hands up if you have ever experienced the winter blues?

Don’t worry if you do, I get it also. The crazy thing is that I never realized it until a few years back when my husband pointed it out that I always seem low and out of sorts in January and February. I remember just looking at him and the light seemed to turn on.

I had never been a fan of those two particular months, but it had never dawned on me that my feelings of depression were related to them. Or more accurately, to the time of year.

As a coder I was familiar with and had even coded my fair share of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) diagnoses. I even have a friend that almost goes into full mourning as soon as the leaves start to turn in the fall. So, I know the symptoms, some of which can be very serious. And I knew that that wasn’t the problem – however I will say right now, SAD can turn into a very serious medical problem. If you think you may have it, please get help.

So, what are you to do to try to combat the Winter Blues?

Here is a list of things I use and do to get out of my winter blues.

  • Realize it – recognizing what’s going on will help you realize that it’s only temporary.
  • Essential oils – you can use them in oils, put them in the bath, shampoos/conditioners, etc.
  • Herbal teas
  • Exercise – keep it up even if you think it’s not working
  • Self pampering
  • Eat a clean diet – lots of fruits and veggies
  • Cut back on coffee (ugh!), sugar, and if need alcohol and tobacco.
  • Get outside – even on a cloudy day you can get some benefits from the sun – but oh how wonderful it is when the sun is out!
  • Buy/do something just for you – I am not saying to go buy a new car – I am talking something small. Go to a movie, or buy a new nail polish – think small.
  • Take a class or volunteer.
  • Try a new hobby -or- pull out an old one.
  • Put music on and bust a move!
  • Plan for the future – Springs coming! Sometimes it doesn’t feel like it, but it is. If you are a gardener, order some seed catalogs and start planning your garden. Like to travel? Start exploring ideas for your next adventure!
  • Plant something! On my windowsill I currently have herbs, lettuce, spinach, kale, swiss chard and microgreens happily growing.
  • Animal/pet therapy – I always feel better after I have hung out with my dog and/or ducks!
  • Get out – of the house I mean. Go to church, go window shopping, grocery shopping, etc. See people -and- interact with people – it may seem silly, but it helps.

If all else fails, look into a light lamp/box. When I worked in-office, during the winter we very rarely seen the sun (we were in the basement!). The boss was a wonderful woman though, and she realized that we poor, pale souls needed a little boost during the winter months and invested in some light boxes for the break room. We didn’t use them much, on lunch and breaks, but even the little bit that we did used them it seemed to help.


What do you do to help with the winter blues?


Morning Chat 12/26/2022

Welcome to Morning Chat.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas.

Over the last few weeks I have been doing a little tweaking to the blog – trying stuff here, adjusting stuff there. My reason is simple. – a change is coming. Not a big deal, life changes all the time. But here on MTdawn the New Year is bringing realizations and hopefully a little more time.


A few months ago, I started to feel as the blog was running me. Again, not a big deal. I am sure at every time a blogger feels the same way at one time or another. But what bothered me is that I wasn’t enjoying myself anymore. I started the blog to connect to people and share ideas. I still felt that those were the driving force, but it became more about deadlines and stress. I didn’t like it.

And I know what you are thinking – yes, I did bring it on myself. I totally admit it. For some reason I didn’t feel the way I thought I should, or the way I wanted to. Now, I know that life isn’t all fairy tales, rainbows and unicorns. My time on this planet has seen more tears with it then I would like to admit. But this is my blog. And what’s good about that is that I can make the rules.

So, with that I wish you all a wonderful year full of happiness and joy. I hope you will check back every now and then and see what’s going on here, even drop a line just to say ‘hi’!

I am looking forward to the New Year. I hope you are too!


Morning Chat 11/29/22

Good morning and welcome to Morning Chat for November 29, 2022!


I hope everyone is having a great week so far! Hopefully you didn’t OD on too much turkey and pie!

We had a quiet Thanksgiving. Since my husband had to work the night of, we ended up having ours earlier in the week, it was reminiscent of when he worked in law enforcement. In all his years working in it, we only had Thanksgiving on the actual day, one time, and that was the year our daughter was born.

Since then, I have been thinking about traditions. We definitely have ours that we do on the day of, or on the ‘stand in’ day. For the longest time we had a set number of traditions, but slowly over the years we have added more, like homemade cinnamon rolls on Thanksgiving morning while we watch the parade and chocolate satin pie (and pumpkin pie) after dinner.

Mostly my daughter and I have added them. I think that mostly came from us trying to celebrate the holiday when it was just the two of us, and we were waiting for him to come home. It’s nice to hear her excited for them every year, even though we have only been doing them for a short time, they have become a tradition for her. Something I hope that she will carry on with her own children.

What are your special traditions?


Morning Chat 11/1/22

Good morning! Welcome to Morning Chat for November 1, 2022!

Adjusting needs and a Thankful card!

Happy November! I hope everyone had a safe Halloween! We had a pretty quiet one. Halloween on a Monday isn’t the best, where we live a lot of the festivities were done on Saturday. I can understand why, but it kinda takes away some of the festivities of the night – oh well, each to their own, right?!


The change of the month brings a change to MTdawn. With this site I look at it as a job -a job I like, but a job, nonetheless. At least I like it, but like any job it can become a burden more than a blessing when it takes over.

I know the fault is all mine. I have 2 sites, MTdawn and Pumpkin Papercraft, both of which I love working on. But there is a lot of work that goes into them, especially if I am posting projects.

My problem you ask?

I was starting to feel overwhelmed – I am a wife and mother, taking care of those I love is first priority. We have a lot going on in our lives and I started to feel that I wasn’t enjoying myself the way I should, and that mainly came down to how much time I was blogging and trying to keep ahead of everything.

Then an epiphany…

The only thing I can figure out is that I was so used to working a job that I didn’t like that I just kept doing it because I couldn’t change anything. And then I realized – hello, I’m in charge! I can do whatever I want! – and yes, if you are wondering that was a “duh” moment for me. It happens!

So, the thought was simple – cut back! So that’s the plan. Not a lot will change on here, on MTdawn. I am going to start posting the papercrafts that I do again, under the name Pumpkin Papercraft (more info for this card will be posted tomorrow).

And slowly over the next few weeks I am going to do some house cleaning on the site and simplify to make things easier to find. I figured I would ask all you wonderful folks that check out my blog what you do and don’t like? Any ideas? I would love the feedback!


Homeschooling on the hard days

Having a bad day homeschooling, here are some tips to help.

Have you had a hard day of homeschooling yet? Chances are that you have. How do I know…because I am having one right now. Yep, it’s one of those doom and gloom days. The good thing is we don’t have them very often. Usually there is something that proceeds them. A late bedtime the night before, recent time hanging around with certain friends, too much sugar, avoidance in learning a new/difficult subject, growing pains, and the list goes on and on and on…

So, what do you do?

The thought of pulling my hair out and running away, screaming like a mad woman was appealing.

But not very helpful.

Here are some of tricks I use to get thru the hard days.

Figure out what the triggers are beforehand. If you don’t know, or are having trouble figuring them out, write down in a notebook what is going on in you and your childs’ life the day before and the day of. This will allow you to find a pattern, then when you see ‘whatever’ it is happening you can stop it before it starts, or at the very least prepare yourself.

You can also use their triggers as an opportunity to teach them. One of my daughters’ triggers is hunger – especially when she is growing. Ugh, it reminds me of the Betty White Snickers commercial. It’s not pretty. So, what I do is when I notice her starting to get grumpy, I offer her a snack – crackers, glass of milk, carrot sticks, anything to keep the hungry monster away. But I also put it in her hands, making her responsible. Sometimes I miss stuff, it happens. By having her identify when she feels hunger coming on it teaches her to be proactive about it.

Pray. I mean it. When in the middle of a ‘it’ I pray for our tempers to be controlled, for patience thru the rest of the day and for the day to get better. By giving it to God always makes the day get better instantly.

Talk to your kids about it. If they are having the bad day, try to find out why. Finding out why and trying to help will show them that they aren’t alone. If you are having the bad day (hey, it happens!) let them know, maybe even offer them an incentive. Maybe a little extra play time or a favorite dessert after dinner will help everything get done without the drama.

Put yourself in timeout. Not your kid(s) – you! Go to the bathroom, bedroom, outside, anywhere alone-just 5 minutes tops, and breathe deeply. Concentrate on your breathing and with every exhale send your troubles with your breath and relax. Even after a minute you will feel better. Make a plan and get back to it.

Move on. Sometimes moving to the next subjects helps. Especially if it is something they like.

Change gears altogether. Completely drop what you are doing and be done with ‘schooling’ for the day. Sometimes you just have a bad school day, and nothing is going to make better. But don’t be done with your child for the day. We have only had this happen once, but one thing I noticed was that my daughter thought I didn’t want her around – BIG parenting fail. I felt terrible, I didn’t mean to make her feel that way I was just so overwhelmed that it happened. So now, when this happens (my plan for the future) we do something fun, go for a walk, paint pictures, play games, just go outside and play.

What do you do to help with hard days?


How far have you come?

Looking to the past to help motivate you for the future.

What have you accomplished in the past?

For myself it’s easy to see what I have done in the past – project wise – all I have to do is walk through my house. There are projects everywhere that show what I have done. From the easy paper decor items to the involved house renovations – most of which were completed by me (Not all of them, I want to give credit to my hubby who has had his full share of projects.). Then if I pull up the blog, I can rummage thru the 142 posts that have come before this one – and that’s just on MTdawn, Pumpkin Papercraft has another 36 posts! That surprises me that I have been able to accomplish so many. I really didn’t think I had that much writing in me!

For the personal side, it takes a little more digging. I know what is in my past, but sometimes time fades the details. I recently looked back at reread what I wrote for Morning Chat – 1/3/22. That was the very first Morning Chat that I posted. In it I give a little background of who I am and where I have been. Even though it was just a little over 7 months ago that I wrote it, the life I had then almost seems alien now. I will note, that in that post, I didn’t even cover other very personal challenges and heartbreak that I have faced. Some of which I don’t know if I ever will talk about them, they are painful. And even though I have recovered, even forgiven, sometimes the best think you can do is learn from the experience and move on. Forgiving can be helpful but forgetting can be harmful in numerous ways.


So, exactly how far have I come?

For the projects, I look at them and it helps me to keep moving forward. Even though I have been creating most my life, I will still make something and just be wowed by it. I know that God gave me that creativity and I am very happy about it. I know that explanation seems like so little in comparison to some, but it is the truth. Sometimes just being happy about something is best and can give you so much motivation for the future.

For the personal side, time does heal. It may feel like it is taking an eternity, but as I said before, time will fade the pain. But the lessons that came from that pain, shouldn’t fade. Like a scar from an injury, they should be a reminder, good or bad, of the lesson learned. As I look back, I see that even during the hardest times, I made it thru. Even as rough as they were, God got me through it. I know that there will be future times that are as hard or harder. And I will get through them also.

How far have you come?


Morning Chat 7/25/22

Good morning! Welcome to Morning Chat for July 25, 2022!

‘isn’t this done yet’?

The quote of the week is “Finish what you start no matter how painful it may be”- from gymnast Nastia Liukin. When I read that I just chuckled, then rubbed my sore back. Oh, how true it is.

Thankfully after months – what seems like an eternity somedays – our projects are finally slowing down – we are almost done!

And that makes me very happy.

This week the posts are about fun things, making a kids chalkboard and a pallet couch. Which, since I have made the pallet couch, I have had very little time to enjoy it. I plan to remedy that very soon!


Have you ever got to the point in a project – or projects – where you think ‘isn’t this done yet‘?

That happens to me every year. Since we have no garage or shop to be able to work in in the cold months – and since we live in Montana, we have just a few of those every year (I really hope you hear the sarcasm in that!) – we tend to overload our spring and summers. My hope is that someday we will have a place out of the elements to be able to do projects year-round. But for now, this is life. And even though I am tired, I will be extremely happy when they are all done.

I hope you have a great week – and good luck on any of your projects!


Kids & Trust

Do you trust your kids?

It’s a cloudy, wet day. I am writing this post while waiting for an oil change in my car – alone. While my daughter is at home, 2 miles away – alone. Why am I telling you this? I am telling you of my trust in her. I trust my daughter. Even at her young age, I trust her. I trust that she won’t trash the house, I trust that she won’t eat a bunch of junk food, get into things that we have set limits on or burn the house down – all of which are good things to know that she won’t do.

But after watching other kids her age, even older than her, not acting appropriately (ok, they were acting like wild animals), it makes me wonder if my husband and I have an anomaly on our hands. A naturally mature, good-hearted child. Or is it the years that we have invested in her? The small, menial tasks that we worked on, that has led us to this point – that I know that I can leave for 1, 2, even 5 hours – and I know that everything will be ok at home and with her.

I am assuming it’s a bit of both.

I recently read an article by Annie HolmquistNever too young to learn responsibility“, it was telling of young children, around the ages of 4 and 5, doing errands – alone. No adults to hold their hand and make sure they were doing what they needed to do. I also remember years ago, I saw a video of a young boy in Japan, approximately 6 years old. His daily routine had him preparing for school, walking for miles then taking a train to his final destination all by himself. Then when done for the day he would retrace his steps back home. The majority of his day was spent alone in the middle of a busy metropolis.

What do both of these have in common? Responsibility on the child’s side? Yes. But also trust on the parents’ side. The parents of these children must have trust in their children. Much like people in a committed relationship that have trust in each other to be faithful, parents need to be able to trust their children. And with that trust comes freedom. A freedom that some parents would scoff at, some may even consider it neglect.

But it is not just a freedom for the child, it’s a freedom for the parent also. The freedom for the child comes in the form of being able to understand their value. To grow as their own person and learn who they are. The freedom for the parent comes in a different form. A bit scary at first, to watch your little one that you have protected for so long leave that secure space. But once you see your child flourish, it’s all worth it. You then have the freedom to enjoy them as a person, not just as your child. You get to see a glimpse of who they will become, and it all came, because you trusted them.


Morning Chat 6/27/22

Good morning and Welcome to Morning Chat for June 27, 2022!

an early morning planet viewing

I hope everyone had a good weekend. We once again had a busy one, that’s just part of life on our little farm – always something to do – even on a mini farm!

I want to tell you about what we did last Friday.

Last week we watched online (at as the planets aligned in the night sky. And my daughter, the amateur astrologer and local planet nut who is obsessed with space asked if we could take our telescope out to see them. This meant more than just stepping out back door, we have large trees to the east of us that would have impeded our view. So, I, as any good homeschool mom got myself up – well before I think even God was up – and we drove over to our local wildlife refuge, Lee Metcalf (or just Metcalf to locals).

I knew what to expect from the many early morning photo shoots that I had done in the past, but it was a whole new experience for her. She was super excited, even at 3:45 am, but once we parked and got out, she quicky became nervous. I could tell, a mother always knows. The cool brisk morning, yipping foxes and rustling grasses from unseen critters had her a bit on edge, that is until I lined up the telescope and had her peer thru. What she saw was a small blurry Jupiter. It was small but just enough for us to count 3 moons around it.

The next planet to view was Saturn. Given the fact that it is over 800 million miles away from us our little telescope didn’t do too bad. With our eye piece we were able to see the ellipse of the planet and it’s rings. Which of course was all that my daughter needed to get over the early morning jitters for good. I will admit that it was awe inspiring for me. The thought that these giant planets are out in space, millions of miles away and yet they are right there – thru the lens to look at. It made me feel small, and a bit like I was in on a secret.

I hope you get to try it someday. Have a great day!


Taking a Break

Sometimes you just need to take a break…

This post has been written for homeschoolers – but a break can be an important part of everyone’s lives!

We are officially on summer break after my daughter’s 2nd year. I schedule breaks through-out the school year, but it always seems to amaze me how long it takes us to get to one.


Since we homeschool year-round, breaks are an important part of our lives. It allows us to take a breath, and revel in where we have been and anticipate what is to come.

It also allows us to remember why we do what we do. The constant strain can make everyone tired – not just the students. I speak from firsthand experience. Being a homeschool mom takes work, and there has been more than one time that I was the one that wanted to skip a day more than my daughter.

So, why not just take an extra day or two off and get back to it? Simple…we need to rest! And just get away from it all, even if it is just stuffing everything into a drawer for a week or two and “forgetting” about it. For the student it’s getting away from the work. Learning can be exhausting especially if it doesn’t come easy. And for the teacher, i.e. me, it’s the idea that for a period of time, I don’t have to explain something again, and again, aaand again. sigh…

Here is a quick list of things we like to do on our breaks:

  • Nothing! Absolutely nothing! Nothing is scheduled and anything goes, she wants to play with her mud kitchen or hang out in the pool all day – have at it! I may join her in the pool!
  • Hanging out at the river/lake
  • Hiking – we have great trails near us!
  • Painting – we are currently looking to paint our house (which will be fun for her for about – 15 minutes) but I am talking about pictures, wood pieces, etc. When she was little, she liked to “water paint” the house. I would give her a bucket of “paint” (water) and an old paint brush, and she would “paint” all day.
  • Finding shapes in the clouds – when was the last time you did that?
  • Star gazing
  • Board games
  • Family Lego time – we have built some big houses!
  • I do try to limit tv time, but when the weather is nasty out, we hang out watching movies and sipping cocoa
  • Drawing with chalk (on sidewalks/patios – I also made my daughter a chalkboard out of an old door – which I will be making into a post soon)
  • Imaginary play – I get out all our garden sheets and a bunch of clothesline clips and she drapes them over her swing set and chairs to make tents, pirate ships, circuses – you name it!
  • We currently have a very large pot full of leftover wood pieces from projects – it is amazing the things she can think up with those. Since they are left over pieces I don’t care if they get ruined, so it’s nothing new to find them floating in the pool or being used to make a Fairy house in the sandbox.

What is something fun that you do when you get a break?


What Makes Us Content?

Are you content…or always looking for something better?

What makes some people happy with a small house in the middle of a city where others will only be happy in a grand mansion with acres of rolling hills around them?


In my short time on this earth, I have known people that are perfectly content working as retail managers and others, that are the amazing surgeons, only seem happy if all eyes are looking at them while they try the latest new medical advancements. Drive, yes, many are very driven, but are they happy?

Is being content in our circumstances something that is just in us? Or is it a choice? I would have to lean toward the later. I think a lot of life comes down to a choice. What we wear, where we work, where we live, even who we marry are all choices we make. Yes, some have much more lasting end result then others. What you wear may only be significant for a day, even a week, but who you marry can last for the rest of your life.

Like many of the choices above, I think we have to make the choice to be content.

I am a prime example; I would love to have a larger house with more land – at least the land – but with property/housing costs in our area doubling in the last two years the idea becomes unrealistic. When we noticed the trend, we had to have a true heart to heart with ourselves. We then realized the blessing that we have with having a paid off house and we started working to change our mindset to feeling content in our circumstances. It took us having to make a choice, albeit a difficult choice, to allow ourselves to be happy where we are.

So, once again I will ask you – are you content?


Simplifying Life

Simplifying life can make life a lot easier…

…and a whole lot more satisfying.

What if I told you that there was a way to make your life better? But here’s the catch – you have to want to do it. Much like an addict needs to want to be healthy, someone who has a complicated life needs to want to simplify. Here are a few ideas to help you get started.


There are very few of us that don’t have a hundred things they don’t need in their home. “Stuff” helps us feel comfortable. Usually when a couple gets married, they ‘make a home’ – i.e., they buy stuff. And that’s ok. It’s when you start becoming a slave to your ‘stuff’, that is usually when problems start. The comfortable feeling of home can become a daily dread when ‘just right’ becomes ‘too much’.

Then there are times your life changes and what was working no longer helps. That means that system needs to be updated or changed completely. I noticed this in my own life – when I went from working in office to working remotely, I didn’t need all the work clothes anymore, and ended up getting rid most of my work wardrobe. I kept a couple outfits in case I needed to go into the office. The other time that our life changed was when we brought home our daughter. Life in general changed so how we organized and kept our home changed.

  • Get rid of stuff
  • If something is not working to help you – get rid of it or change it
  • Downsize
  • Clean off “tops” – table tops, counter tops, etc. (this will help a home feel cleaner)
  • Reevaluate organization – maybe you have the room, but better organization would help
  • Get rid of old stuff – medicines, cleaning products, clothes that don’t fit, kids toys, etc.)
  • Get rid of broken or things that are missing pieces
  • Reevaluate “what ifs” – what if I loose 10 lbs, have a baby, move, get into X. Sometimes this can be the hardest one, you have to be very honest with yourself.
  • Try the – one in one out rule – something comes in, then something must go out


Sometimes it’s not the stuff in my life that is making complicated but what is going on in my life. When I am feeling overwhelmed one of the first thing I try – TRY – to do, is list the top 5 things that are bothering me just then. Sometimes just naming the issues helps me to be better able to handle them, which makes life simpler.

  • Get rid of debt/live within your means
  • Reevaluate needs (physical, mental, spiritual) when life changes occur
  • Cut back on wants
  • Take stuff off schedule (say ‘no’!)
  • Clump appointments together
  • Clean up pantry/freezer and make menus to make mealtime a little easier


Work has the ability to affect you as much as anything. Especially here in the states where we have prided ourselves on our work ethic for decades. It has been engrained into us that work is good, more work is better. But there again lies the problem. Working extra here and there is ok, but when you become your job sometimes you have to give up what truly matters in order to feed the “work” beast. The good thing is usually your body and life gives you signs that you are needing a change, you just have to acknowledge them.

  • Clean up your space
  • Clean out emails
  • Say ‘No’ – too many projects can be overwhelming
  • Take a day off – I am a huge fan of the occasional mental health day, they can be life savers!
  • Reevaluate your work

What do you do to help simplify your life?


Morning Chat 6/13/22

Good morning and Welcome to Morning Chat!

Jurassic Park Dominion, expensive popcorn and canning meat!

I hope everyone had a great weekend! We had a very busy one.

A few weeks ago, I asked my husband what to think about what he wanted for/or to do for Father’s Day. He decided that he wanted to go to the new Jurassic Park movie – Jurassic World Dominion, which was really fun. Both of us have been JP fans since the first one came out. I can remember reading the book before Jurassic Park came out- almost 30 years ago!

I know some of the reviews came back negative, but we enjoyed it. We liked that they finally answered a question that we had from the first one – involving a can – not going to say anymore just in case you want to see it. And it was nice to see old characters brought back, I have been a fan of Sam Neill ever since JP came out. We only wished that they had brought back Joseph Mazzello (Timmy) and Ariana Richards (Lex) from the first movie. (FYI, if you want to watch a great miniseries try The Pacific from HBO it stars Joseph Mazzello – whom I am also a fan of after seeing this, he did a great job!)

After enjoying our popcorn – which we needed to take a loan out just to buy – and watching dinosaurs run rampant thru the streets of Malta it was time to wander home. But the fun didn’t stop there! Or well, maybe it did. I don’t know if being yelled at by ducks is fun, certainly is loud. They definitely were not happy to be couped up on such a nice rainy day.

After letting out our own feathery dinosaur wanna-be’s, it was time to can. Pressure can that is. After hearing reports that we may be experiencing blackouts over the summer I figured I protect the small investment that we have in our freezer – meaning our meat – and can it. It will do two things for us – one, it will put the meat into a long-term storage (the shelf life is around 18 months) and two, it opens up freezer space. Summer’s coming – gotta have room for ice cream! By the way, since we knew I was canning when we got home, we were enjoying a discussion about what dinosaurs tasted like – we figured chicken – what do you think?

Anyway…pressure canning meat is something new to me, I have home canned a lot in the past but never meat. So, as any good blogger, I made notes, took some pictures and will be making a post about it soon. I am glad to say that it looks like everything turned out well. Over the next week I will be cooking with some to verify the results.

Well, time to get going, still have another batch to can and I hear the feathery beasts. I hope you have a great day!


Virtual Travel Adventures: Personal or Homeschool

This is a great – cheap – way to “see” the world. It also makes a great Social Studies project!

I don’t remember much about my school years, but when I was in 7th grade, my social studies teacher “took” us to Mexico. During our class time for a period of time – I think maybe 4 weeks – we watched travel videos, looked at maps, pictures, learned about the culture, tried authentic foods, and was able to touch and feel goods that he had picked up from his travels there. We in turn used special color-coded journals to write down what we “did” and what we thought. Every Friday we handed the journals in, and he would read over them, grade them, and then return them the next Monday so we could add to it the next week.

I don’t remember his name, but I remember that he seemed to want to open the world up to us. And for that I am grateful. We moved soon after that project was completed so I don’t know if he took his students on other adventures around the globe, I would hope so. I truly enjoyed it.


Back then – the ’90’s was a lot different than it is now. We had movies, maps, books and pictures to gain information. Now you can turn on your computer, and in a matter of seconds, you can be anywhere in the world. Moving down the streets in some rural village in the middle of a distant country just like you were there.

I will admit that nothing can beat being somewhere to enjoy the experience of travel and the diversities of culture, but this is close. And with everything going on in the world, not to mention the gas prices that are on a steady uphill climb – it can be a close second. And now, another “benefit” (for lack of a better word), is that since the pandemic, a good portion of museums, aquariums, even the Vatican has virtual visits. And if you want more of a guided tour you can sign up for virtual trips. Just put in “virtual traveling” into any search engine and rummage thru the results. Some do have a fee, but most are free.


So why write about this? For one, I am starting to make up my daughters’ schedule for the next school year. And it is something that I would like to do with her, maybe not as involved as it was when I was a kid, but maybe somewhere new every week to get a feel of what’s beyond our little world.

And two, to mention it to those who are a little wanderlust, who are unable to travel at the moment for whatever reason. When I was working full time, sometimes the stress was overwhelming, not to mention sad due to my line of work. And every now and then I would take a break and head (virtually) to some remote island in the pacific – or stroll around the streets of a small town in Tuscany. Allowing myself to “get away” even for 10 minutes helped the rest of the day.

So, with that – I bid you safe travels – from carpal tunnel and eye strain. And send a Thank you, to my teacher, whoever you are/were. You touched a kids life – Thanks.


Morning Chat 5/30/22

Good morning and Welcome to Morning Chat for May 30, 2022!

rain, pantry organization and Hyacinth Bucket


I first would like to start off by Thanking all the veterans for the service they have given to our country and offer a sincere Thank you to the families of the fallen heroes of the military that make our freedom possible. I pray that this Memoria Day offers you peace and hope.

I fell asleep last night to the sound of raindrops drumming on the roof. The peaceful sound allowed me to sleep very well. Upon awakening I found a wet, overcast day that is forecast to much of the same as the night before. And I am thankful for it. Not just the sleep, or rain (which is desperately needed), but the break from outside activities.

Days like this make me want to grab my camera and head out to find the perfect shot. The wet conditions and clouds above make the colors pop and give a luster to life. I consider it one of God’s little gifts to us.

The problem is that’s not what is planned for the day. The wet break in the weather is allowing me to catch up on much needed work inside. Our pantry specifically. Since we have been absorbed the last 6 weeks in outside projects our pantry – to say the very least – looks like a bomb went off. Honestly, I don’t even know what is in there.

The main issue with this, is that our pantry shares a room with our office and homeschool supplies. It’s a busy room (we have a lot of multipurpose rooms in our house!). When I was working full time, I kept up on the organization of it – most of the time – because I looked at it every day. Now not so much. It happens!

So, for a few minutes before the busyness of the day starts, I shall take my coffee out on the deck, in my only Royal Doulton cup – a little nod to Hyacinth Bucket (pronounced Bou-quet!) and enjoy the beauty of the mountains that God has so graciously painted.

I hope you have a wonderful week!