Grief And Gratitude

If you follow the blog, you didn’t see a Happy Homemaker Monday post from me this week.  Unfortunately, my husband’s grandfather passed away Friday evening.  My husband was already in Oklahoma to support his family.

The services were Monday and Tuesday in Oklahoma. The boys and I packed up and traveled down there on Sunday morning.  


Even in grief, I found a little time for gratitude. I kept a running tally in my head. The first six items, I threw in a draft folder on Friday evening. The rest popped into my head during the weekend and early part of the week.

Before We Left Items:

  1. My boys getting a chance to know one of their great-grandfather. He lived 99 years!  Only in the past 2-3 years did his health quickly decline. How many 14 and 17 year-old kids are lucky enough to have known their great-grandfathers for so much of their lives?
  2. Liz Claiborne for making stylish plus sized clothing

    Full disclaimer: I opted not wear this after to the services after all as it felt a little too informal once I arrived down there. Still happy with my purchase and will wear it for other more casual occasions.

  3. Not being sick this weekend with a million things to do
  4. A kind friend willing to look after our little gray cat on a moment’s notice
  5. Payday!
  6. Seeing more birds at the bird feeders each day

Items From The Rest Of The Weekend/Week:

  1. Safe travels to and from Oklahoma for all of us

    So glad they did their range-burning on one of our non-travel days!

  2. Caring middle school teachers (I had to e-mail each teacher regarding missing parent-teacher conferences regarding a different matter)
  3. Good weather, both here and in Oklahoma
  4. A good breakfast each morning at our hotel (normally, we stay with family but opted to get a hotel room this time because of the number of people in town)
  5. Minimal family drama (Honestly, this concerned me. Prayers for healing of some on-going family rifts appreciated)
  6. Mostly avoiding family drama (Extra prayers my husband and I continue to avoid it.)
  7. Family
  8. Grandpa’s faith.
  9. My kind, generous husband and children
  10. Good friends
  11. Sleeping in my own bed last night!
  12. Coffee, especially at home coffee. While I love Starbucks and the fancy creamers of the hotel lobbies, nothing beats being able to just get up and fix yourself a cup of your own coffee to start the day.
  13. My plants in the windowsill (mostly) surviving as I forgot about them
  14. Today being an absolutely beautiful first day of spring!

What things are you grateful for this week?


Joining the I Like Thursdays over at the Not Afraid Of Color blog. Be sure to go check it out and say hello to LeeAnna and the other wonderful bloggers joining in today,

I Like Gratitude

For this week and maybe going forward (still trying to decide), I’ve decided to combine my gratitude post with my I like Thursday post.

This week started out kind of hectic so this may be brief as I’m still playing catch up after being down all weekend with a nasty virus. Thought it was the flu but now I’ve decided perhaps just a nasty cold virus.

Straight to the gratitude list (and I also like all these things!)

  1. Feeling healthy!
  2. Medicine that works or has the placebo effect. Don’t care, better now. Shout out to Elderberry syrup.
  3. My happy little phone game where I can make it spring right now! 
  4.  Kids smart enough to do this while saying it’s all just numbers. (His grandfather gave him the card, I like it as well!)
  5. All the signs of spring I see around me: lots of birds including robins “fighting”, geese flying north, and rain with warmer weather.
  6. Dark chocolate (Trying to do no sugar in March is tough, I’m allowing myself a little dark chocolate here and there as a treat to keep from giving up completely)
  7. Unexpected poetry hidden in my chocolate bar wrapper
  8. Showing up to work on the wrong day yesterday (oops!) and getting to stay, they needed me after all.
  9. Green plants, can’t wait until I can see some outside
  10. Having older kids so I could sleep when sick and not worry (too much).

What things are you grateful for this week?

Linking up with LeeAnna over at Not Afraid of Color for I Like Thursdays. Go check it out!

(Apologies for not visiting anyone last week, thanks to all who stopped by the blog. Hopefully, I’ll be a bit more social this week though I don’t look to have lots of blogging time again until Saturday.)


Happy Homemaker Monday…Oops, it’s Wednesday!

Super late with my weekly “planning” post this week. Coming off a weekend of being down and out with a nasty virus, followed by 2 days of working. Throw in an academic awards night on Monday evening and a high school band concert last night. Hello, Wednesday!

Let’s see about planning the second half of the week shall we? If the link is still open, I’ll go ahead and link my post up to Diary Of A Stay At Home Mom where Sandra hosts the Happy Homemaker Mondays.

The Weather  

Spring is almost here and definitely in the air! 54 glorious degrees. Thunderstorms likely today. Rained a lot yesterday.  Almost 60 and windy tomorrow. More rain chances for the weekend. Been a lot of snow when rain excites us. Seen a little sun here and there as well.

On My Reading Pile

Mostly, a bunch of over due library books. I’m just going to take them over and start fresh. However, my copy (won in a contest) of Outer Order, Inner Calm by Gretchen Rubin arrived. I’ll start reading it next.

On My TV

Best thing to watch when you feel like a zombie? A show about them! Finished all 5 seasons of Z-Nation on Netflix.  Excited for Seal Team to return (finally!) next week. And I’m still watching God Friended Me on Sunday nights, rare for me to make time for a show and I’ve been making time to watch it.  Of course, it’s soon to be time to spend sitting outdoors instead of inside watching TV.

On The Menu For This Week

Menu planning on a Sunday night, while sick, for a busy week leaves this week’s menu looking a little uninspired.

MONDAY: We ate pork chops and baked sweet potatoes. *I worked 8:30-1:30* *Academic Awards night for J*

TUESDAY: We had Subway *I worked 8:15-3:45* *Band concert for G*

WEDNESDAY: Roast in the crock pot *Another Academic Awards night for J, this is a district one*

THURSDAY: Chicken of some sort, salad *I work 7:15-4* *Baritone lesson for J*

FRIDAY: BLT’s and French Fries *I work 7:15-4*

On My To Do List

Way too much!

  1. Clean, sanitize, fumigate the house!
  2. Return over due library books
  3. Organize/pay bills
  4. Make to-do list for upcoming trip
  5. Clean out pantry/fridge/freezer
  6. Find Spring clothes, put away sweaters
  7. Finish updating calendar
  8. Laundry
  9. Call about getting Senior pictures done for G (yes, I know this is super late)
  10. Call to reschedule hair appointment

Sure I could keep listing things but I think I’ll stop at 10.

What I Am Creating  

My own little patch of spring inside.  

Looking Around The House

Let’s not do that right now.  At least I’ve lit some candles and sprayed my Method cleaner in the bathroom sinks.

From The Camera

Beautiful sunrise on Monday! 

Something Fun To Share

May or may not have spent way too much time this morning reading this L.A. Times article rating breakfast cereals. The ranking of the Captain Crunch cereals as well as the omission of Peanut Butter Captain Crunch disturbs me. I feel for those living in a world where Peanut Butter Captain Crunch, pure comfort food for me, is not readily available.

What I’m Wearing Today

A mid-arm length white, black, blue, and gold tunic shirt I bought at CVS of all places as well as black leggings and tennis shoes. I’ll change into something else before the academic awards ceremony tonight.

One Of My Simple Pleasures

Being outside in the spring time.

Quote For The Week


What’s on your agenda this week?

First Gratitude Post In March

Happy March! You know what happens in March? Spring! 

Hopefully, it arrives as scheduled and with the proper weather. I’m thankful we’ve made it into March and so here’s my first Gratitude list for our new month:

  1. Spring is coming soon
  2. Spotting a new kind of bird (I think) in the crazy winter weather

    I know the photo is a bit out of focus but any guesses on what kind of bird this might be? I’m having a tough time deciding if it’s a house finch, type of sparrow, or something else. Looks like a small, shaggy striped sparrow.

  3. Spending time with family
  4. Weather nice enough (barely) for a walk around the block before the snow & freezing cold
  5. Items to the donation center (finally)
  6. A slice of carrot cake (a dessert worthy of a sugar-free month exception)
  7. Weather holding off until after the middle school band festival
  8. An unexpected easier day at work
  9. Husband making lunch and dinner for the kids while I was at work
  10. Blogging friends
  11. Friends in all forms
  12. A good book
  13. Flower seeds sprouting
  14. Children who make me laugh and think, sometimes at the same time
  15. Blue skies!

I could keep listing things but I need to walk away from the computer for a bit. Laundry and household chores require my attention while I’m home today to give it.

What things are you thankful for this week?

Happy Homemaker Monday, Marching On Through Winter

The calendar might say March but it’s still “officially” winter. One only needs to glance out the window around here to know that.  Two and a half weeks until spring “officially” arrives.

My boys are off school yet again for a cold day this time. Sub-zero wind chills, not safe to let the kids hang out at the bus stops. Our road also doesn’t look great after Saturday night’s snowfall. The cold apparently makes the melting salts not works as well.

Lucky (?) me, I still get to go to work later. And for a full day. Let’s see if I can squeeze in planning my week with Sandra over at Diary Of A Stay At Home Mom before I need to leave.

The Weather  

Already discussed it some. Current temperature is -1 degrees but windchill is -13.  News said 50 degrees below normal for our area at this point in the year. We are supposed to climb our way up to a balmy 37 degrees by Thursday but there’s a…wait for it….chance of more snow that day as well. I like seeing the 54 degrees and thunderstorms predicted for Saturday, that’s normal, I think.

Right Now I Am

Trying to get this post typed up before I finish getting ready for work. Also, drinking coffee and thinking about what to have for breakfast.


I always think of great things for this category in the evenings and think, oh I should share that. And then, by the time I write my post. I’ve forgotten! Maybe I’ll start writing my thoughts down in draft form so I can remember what I’m thinking about each night.

On My Reading Pile

Started reading Crucible by James Rollins since the library sent me a courtesy notice about its due date on Friday. New release so no renewals. I had a bit of trouble getting into this one but now I’m enjoying it enough I’d rather stay home and finish my book than go to work!

On My TV

God Friended Me was finally on again last night so I took a break from the Z’s of Z-Nation over on Netflix to watch it.  Maybe it means Seal Team is set to return soon as well. Been watching The Voice with my husband, I wasn’t sure I would but I do like John Legend as a new judge.

Favorite Blog Post

Found this article entitled: Gratitude for My Teenager-Even When She Is Difficult to be thought-provoking.

Something Fun To Share

This Margarita Bark recipe made me think spring thoughts. I’d like to try it (probably sans the Tequila).

On My Menu

Probably going to be a dull week for our menus.

MONDAY: Husband’s choice *I work 9:30-6*


WEDNESDAY: Pork chops

THURSDAY: Chicken Legs *J has a baritone lesson at 7:30*


On My To Do List

  1. Make sure all my work dates are in the calendar
  2. Get my library book read and returned by Friday
  3. Clean the house!
  4. Write and schedule some blog posts
  5. Figure out why some blogs I follow on Bloglovin quit showing up there
  6. Pull out some spring/summer clothes (maybe it will help the weather?)
  7. Get G a new winter coat
  8. Go to Hobby Lobby and get one more picture frame
  9. Get together with friends (soon, I hope!)


My own spring! My indoor flower seeds are starting to sprout!

Looking Around The House

Unmade bed, covered kitchen table, muddy paw prints on the living room floor….still stuck inside and still winter outside.

From The Camera 

On Saturday afternoon while it was still kind of “warm” and not snowing with clear roads, I took a walk around the block. Saw two deer!


On My Prayer List

Family, friends. My blogging friend from Rebecca’s Hearth and Home, her son-in-law as he’s in the hospital. My blogging friend, Rachel, over at Living Better One Day At A Time, as she deals with some family issues. All of you who read this blog.

Quote For The Week

In the midst of winter, I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer. (Albert Camus)


What’s on your agenda for the week?

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