Wednesday, November 12, 2014

What A Hoot!

I like barred owls. They are one of the more common owls in our area along with great horned owls and screech owls. Barred owls are just beautiful with their dark eyes and barred chest that provide the perfect camouflage among the trees. Their frayed feathers allow them to move unheard. Their call is fun to make too: "Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you all?" That is how hubby and I find each other in stores. We whistle "Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you all?" I am pretty good at making the hooting noise. 

We had the pleasure of seeing a barred owl hanging out in our trees about a month ago. We were just getting ready to leave for the morning and I heard the call. It was sitting in one of the shagbark hickory trees in our front yard. Pumpkin and I looked at it for a bit, then it flew into the neighbor's sweet gum tree. They are so beautiful when in flight.

Owls are just fascinating. Their eyes are stuck in place, so they cannot move them from side to side like we can. But they can turn their heads up to 270 degrees. If our eyes were as large as an owls, our eyes would be the size of grapefruit. Wow! Like other birds, they have hollow bones. They lay their eggs during the winter, typically February and March. The owlets hatch about 4 weeks later. Other owls that can occasionally be found in our area include: snowy owl, long eared owl, short eared owl, barn owl, and saw whet owl.

Well I guess I need to make sure that my little owlets get off to bed.  Have a great week!

Sunday, November 2, 2014


This time of the year is all about changes.

Changes in season: Fall has finally brought the first hard frost of the year. Good-bye bugs!

Changes in temperature: It is like a yo-yo around here. One day up, one day down. Time to break out the blankets!

Changes in clothing: Hello fall and winter clothes. Good-bye spring and winter clothes.

Changes in time: Woohoo! We fell back an hour = an extra hour to sleep in this morning!

Environmental changes are good. They give us a chance to slow down and reflect on physical, emotional, and spiritual changes too. What changes are we expecting in the next few months? What changes do we want to make in the coming months? What changes will happen that will take our breath away?

Changes are everywhere. If we do not change, we cannot grow and we cannot thrive. We are continually adapting to the changes in our lives. Some changes are small and some are huge. Some are planned and some are unexpected. Some changes are good and other are heart breaking. Changes are like a roller coaster with ups and downs. The only thing we can control is how we react to each change. Will we take it in stride? Will we roar like a lion? Will we retreat and lick our wounds? Will we crumble and fall? Will we be an example to others? Changes.

I am not sure what the next few months will bring. The last twelve months has been a roller coaster of ups and downs. I hope that life will get easier, but I know there are many more bumps to navigate.

Changes that I would like to see:
- The kids helping more with keeping the house clean.
- Figuring out how to effectively relay information to my son.
- Slowing down, breathing, and eating healthier.
- Remembering to ask God for help more often.
- Figuring out how to lessen stress in our lives.
- Taking time to give more hugs and more kisses even when the kids are driving me up the wall.

What changes are happening in your life? What changes would you like to see?

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Run For It

I meet myself coming and going quite a bit. I get myself turned around. I find myself upside down. Quite often I am overwhelmed. Life will get easier, right?

My sister got the front door painted lightening bug yellow a few weeks ago. She gave me a new wreath for my birthday, too. Isn't the combination pretty?

The kids have been playing in the leaves this weekend. Princess even sorted the leaves by color.

Last weekend, I carved the family's pumpkin. Somehow a deer bone is now sticking out from its mouth.

I won a free book a few weeks ago. It arrived last weekend: The Stress Cure: Praying Your Way to Personal Peace by Linda Evans Shepherd. Thank you Baker Publishing and Proverbs31. The book is fascinating and a down-to-earth. It centers on managing stress through prayer and scripture. I have only made it through three chapters so far, but I do enjoy the fact that information is related in easy to understand examples. Chapter Two was about being overwhelmed. That me, OVERWHELMED!

I have been taking some nature photography.


I have wrangled with the health insurance company about Pumpkin's specialist. Turns out that I was right and she is in-network. So the insurance company has five visits over the last year to correct. A sixty dollar co-pay is a big difference when it is a two hundred dollar (3) or five hundred dollar (2) per visit bill.

I had the opportunity to attend an ADHD & Special Needs training last week. I have gleaned some information that I can use with Pumpkin. I need to find the time to really sit down and read over all of the handouts. The speaker was very nice, informative, and engaging.

A few weeks ago we took Princess to a neuro-opthomologist in a neighboring town. We were sent by our eye doctor for a second opinion. Good news! Her eyes are healthy and there are no underlying causes for her atypically vision problems. Her glasses are within the acceptable range for what she needs right now. We were referred back to our eye doctor for a 6-month January check-up.

Pumpkin went grocery shopping with me this afternoon. He decided to ride in the cart. Then he strategically stacked and built structures with the groceries as they went into the cart. Gotta love the quirks of autism at times.

I hope that everyone has a great weekend! Don't forget Spotlight Sunday is tomorrow!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Spotlight Sunday

I am issuing a challenge:

Every Sunday from now (October 19) through the end of November, I challenge you to spotlight something positive happening in your community on some form of social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc.). Hence, Spotlight Sunday!

I am concerned about all of the negativity that I see on social media. Usually it is picked up from what people see or hear through the media or acquaintances. There is just as much positive as there is negative for every community, but what seems to get selected to share is more often than not negative. Every single community across this world has at least one, if not more, positive things that often is overlooked. If you want to change how others view your community, then change must first happen within yourself. 

We need to start the change. So what is great and positive about your community? During the upcoming week look for something unique, wonderful, positive about your community to share with your friends, then each Sunday post, tweet, pin what you found. It is a fun treasure hunt and maybe you can even convince your friends to join along, together we can change negativity into positivity one post at time. Are you up for the challenge?

Monday, October 13, 2014

Happiness in the Small Things

Ahh!! New sheets! 

So fresh, so crisp, so wonderful! 

Nothing like new sheets! 

I splurged with my birthday money a few weeks ago and purchased a new set of sheets from Target. We just finally put them on the bed last night. 

I love the burnt orange color and white pattern that runs across the fabric. 
So fall like and not too girly!

Heaven! A freshly made bed is just heaven! 

We even took the time to rotate the mattress. We should do this more often, I woke up without my back hurting. Yay!

Besides these wonderful new sheets, I also like new hot-off-the-press books. The smell of a fresh new book is glorious and is also a rare treat! 

What do you like to have that is new?