Monday, September 7, 2015

Cooler Weather At Last!

The past couple of weeks have been hot and very humid, so we have been running the AC steady day and night.  That's unusual for here in northern Minnesota.  The ten day forecast is calling for temps in the 60's with cool nights in the 40's.  I think long spells of hot weather are now in the past.  We might have a warm day now and then, but I think we are definitely into fall now.  Our leaves are beginning to turn and there are fewer birds to be seen in the yard.  The hummingbirds are keeping us busy filling their feeder--guess they are gearing up for the long haul south.  Our flowers are beginning to look a little droopy but there are still a couple of nice blossoms on the wildflowers we planted in the spring.

John and I got up early and headed into town for a round of golf.  With John working with Matt, our playing time has been limited to John's days off.  The days are getting much shorter.  Instead of getting light at 3:30 a.m., the sun isn't coming up until after six, so we are getting a later start for playing in the mornings.

John picked a five gallon bucket of grapes after we returned home, so we spent the afternoon making grape juice.  We ended up with 42 quarts--hopefully that will last us until next summer.

Life is settling into a routine now that school has started and we have football and volleyball games to attend every week.  John's garden is just about done--only tomatoes left to deal with now.  Everything else has been pulled and stored for the winter.  Right now John is battling a gopher who has made himself at home in the garden spot.  He managed to wipe out the carrots and got a few cucumbers and potatoes.  He's a pretty crafty critter as he has avoided all the traps that have been set.  John vows he going to have victory even if he has to dig up the entire garden spot.


Saturday, August 29, 2015

Long Game and Late Night

John and Matt knocked off work early yesterday so everyone could head out for last night's football game.  We left home about 4:45 p.m. and made a stop at DQ for some supper.  From there it was straight south for an hour to Ulen.  Even though the day had been warm, there was a nice breeze that kept it comfortable for the game.  It was one of the most exciting games I've ever seen--at the end of regulation the score was tied 22-22.  It took five overtimes before a winner was finally declared.  Unfortunately the Bears came out on the short end losing 2 points.  The players on both teams were completely exhausted when it was over.  You could see the players were really slowing down as the overtimes went on.  It's a shame there has to be a loser in a game like this--both teams playing their hearts out.  On the bright side, Hanna came to the game so we got to visit with her for a bit.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Starting Back Up Again

After taking a break from posting, I've decided it's time to get back to it again and let folks know what we're up to here in northern Minnesota.

August has been a busy month for us.  It started off with the county fair where John and I worked in the Original Arts building on entry day and helped long into the evening getting everything set up for judging the next day.  John took a first place ribbon with his Sea Captain wood carving and I got first for my still life photos and an Award of Merit for my Mountain Laurel picture.

 The garden has been great this summer.  We've had plenty of rain along with hot, sunny days. Our grape vines have recovered from the deer destruction of last summer--in fact, they are back bigger and stronger than before.  We should get a bumper crop of grapes and plan on canning many quarts of juice.  John and I have already done dill and bread and butter pickles and sweet relish.  We had plenty of jelly left over from last year, so we skipped jelly-making this summer.

John and I have been playing golf just about every day; however, that is being put on the back burner since John has started working for Matt as Sam is back at football practice and school will start on Tuesday.  We had a major storm go through our area about two weeks ago that caused a lot of property damage.  Matt has been getting many calls about repairing roofs, replacing walls that were blown in, and repairing other damages to siding, etc.  I think he'll be kept busy the remainder of the year.

The high school football season is underway.  The team has three games before school even starts.  I think it has something to do with the Vikings using the MN Gopher's field and trying to work in the high school football playoffs.  All I know is that high school football has started throughout the entire state.  The Bears first game was last Saturday night at home and they won 36-12.  Sam had an outstanding game scoring two rushing and two passing touchdowns.  Tonight we head to Ulen for the second game of the season.  Volleyball started last night.  Jenni, 7th grade, played her first game and Rachel, a freshmen, played JV.   The Clearbrook girls had a winning night at every level.

Jenni Serving

Rachel (15) Returning Vollies

 Sam (7) is Quarterback and A Defensive Player

 Now, you might be asking why I haven't mentioned Hanna yet.  Well, she got a scholarship to a private Christian Academy and now is attending school about two and a half hours away from home.  Sara did her high school at Hillcrest and Hanna has always wanted to go there, so when the opportunity came for her to attend Hillcrest, she decided to take it.

I think this just about catches me up on what has been going on with us.  It's hard to believe it's the end of August and Fall is just around the corner for us living in the northern parts of the country.  We can see some of the leaves are beginning to turn and many of the birds have already started south.  John and I will be heading that way before we know it.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

End of the Month Catch Up

Since I haven't written anything over the past two weeks, thought I better do a little catching up with my blog.  We just returned home from a five day trip to Wyoming to help celebrate grandson Isaiah's 14th birthday.  The weather was just beautiful and we had a great time visiting.

I had the nerve denervations done and my back is finally doing much better.  It takes about four weeks before you start to feel better.  I head back to pain management for a follow up in about two weeks.

John's arm is completely healed and he has been back playing golf--I hope to start up again tomorrow since the weather is going to be much cooler.  We had some hot, steamy weather for almost two weeks and I just don't like playing when it's like that.

John and Josh hauled some slab wood back to our place and got it unloaded.  It has been sitting in the back yard waiting for John to get busy.

The fair is this week, so John and I spent time getting some of my pictures ready for the Original Arts building display.  We'll be working at the fair a couple of days helping with entries, setting up, and working in the building during the fair. 

The garden is doing great and it won't be long before we start harvesting and canning.  We brought some Texas wildflower seeds home, planted them in the front flowerbed, and they have grown beyond our expectations.

 I'll try to do a little better with posting on the blog. 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Mid July Catch Up

I thought it was probably time for a little update from here in northern Minnesota.  John and I have been enjoying a nice quiet summer here on the home front.  We do plan to take a trip to Wyoming in about two weeks.  The garden should be at a spot where nothing will be ready for harvesting until we return home.

I had to have the nerve denervation one side at a time and one week apart.  Last week I had the second side done and so far the pain levels have been low.  

John had been playing golf every day, but last Friday he tore something in his arm and had a lot of bleeding under the skin.  He saw the doctor yesterday and was told the body would heal itself, just apply heat, and take a couple of weeks off from golfing.  John was very happy to hear that it didn't involve any shoulder injury.  I haven't played golf since July 3rd as I have been resting my back and recovering from the procedures that were done.  I hope to get back out next week--John will have to be my caddy.

We had a few days of cooler weather last week, so John had Josh come down and help split and stack wood.  The shed is just about full.  

  I have been busy selling on Ebay and shipping out something  just about every day.  We have been surprised at how many of the leftover components from the business we have been able to sell.  There is not too much left now.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Happy Fourth of July!!

We are truly into summer here in northern Minnesota with warmer temps and long hours of daylight.  The only problem is the wildfires in Canada are causing our days to be very hazy and at times we can barely see the sun.

John and I have continued to play golf in the mornings and then spend the rest of the day doing things around the house.  Lawn mowing is still taking up a large portion of John's time.

Amy's family arrived on Thursday afternoon and we spent some time visiting with them before they headed up to Matt's place where they are staying.  John and I along with JD's family have been at Matt's every evening for supper and visiting.  Today was our annual July 4th get together with fireworks after dark.

Chef Matt

Some of the grand kids roasting marshmellows

Sitting around the fire waiting for the fireworks
 Some of our backyard fireworks

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Beautiful Summer Weather

Our weather has been just beautiful with sunny skies and very comfortable temps.  John and I have played golf just about every morning--at least John does, I take a day off now and then.  Lawn mowing consumes at least part of John's days.  He likes to keep the grass cut low and trimed up because that helps keep the mosquitos down around the house.  

Today John and I were up and out bright and early as I had a 9 a.m. appointment at the Center for Pain Management.  It was nerve denervation day.  Dr. G. met with me and said he decided to do only one side today as he felt the nerve pain afterwards would be too much.  He was taking a more agressive approach and would be doing the nerves at L 3, 4, and 5 (he only did 4 and 5 the last time).
I was sedated and didn't feel a thing and, so far this evening, I am feeling pretty good.  I know things will probably change over the next several days as the nerves try to figure out a new route.  

Once I was done with the procedure, John and I went to breakfast at Perkins and then did some shopping at Hobby Lobby and Wal Mart.  Back home I rested for a bit and then did some baking for the upcoming holiday.  Amy and family will be coming in from Wyoming, so we'll all be gathering at Matt's for meals and fun.