Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Bird Fest 2011 in Pics

Last week I wrote out my Fall To Do list.  Then I started doing it.  Check this one off.  Mom, Amanda, K, BB and JJ and myself attended Bird Fest 2011.  Bird Fest 2011 was held at Beechwood Farms Nature Reserve, located in the Borough of Fox Chapel.  It is the headquarters for the Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania.  The Reserve is 134 acres of gorgeous wooded areas and had more than five miles of walking trails (note that for future to-do lists).  There is also a Store, auditorium, bird feeder observation room and library.  I found our surroundings breathtakingly beautiful.  We parked in a school parking lot and a school bus took us to the Reserve where we picked up key rings with bird tag numbers.  The boys each received a free pair of binoculars.  There were various education type activities to participate in and if you did so, you received a bead for your key ring.  We also made scarecrows to take home and had a bite to eat.  Free bags of birdseed were handed out.  The weather was fabulous and we had a great time.  This event was free and offered so much.  We will be looking forward to next year’s event.
We are here!
Guessing what bird this is
A variety of stuffed birds were numbered and placed throughout

That's Jake in there

K and BB drawing faces for the scarecrows
Tired of drawing on the sack, he drew himself
These 3 guys went home with us

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Annual Fall-To-Do List

I mentioned in an earlier post that I was creating my Fall-To-Do List.  And I have been.  I've also been working on my Winter To-Do List, and my Christmas Gift List. I'm a list girl.  My current everyday lists are my cleaning list and my "WW what did I eat today" list. Anyway, subject to change, revise, amend at any time of day or night, is the Annual Fall-To-Do List.

Things to do this autumn.

  • Crochet a sweater
  • Winterize the yard(s) and porch(es)
  • Take a walk in the woods
  • Gather colorful leaves to press and tape in a journal
  • Shop the Church’s biannual rummage sale
  • Visit the pumpkin farm - buy pumpkins and apples
  • Bake apple dumplings, pumpkin pies, apple bread, pumpkin muffins
  • Go on a haunted hayride; or tour a haunted house
  • Go to Zoo Boo
  • Host a Halloween party
  • Have a scary movie day – make popcorn, apple cider and ghostly treats
  • Buy mittens/gloves, matching scarf/hat – be prepared
  • Make a batch of winter squash soup with gruyere croutons for cool nights. I made this soup last fall.  It was glorious!
  • Carve pumpkins
  • Roast pumpkin seeds
  • Gather all the Halloween movies and books into a basket and set beside t.v. for family nights together.
  • Make taffy apples.
  • Go to a football game
  • Attend Bird Fest 2011
  • Bake a fall casserole 
  • Cross-stitch a turkey runner

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Moon over Pittsburgh

This was the moon the evening of September 12:
This is from my kitchen window.  The light shines through the back of the house and its just gorgeous.  It was so much more breathtaking than what this conveys.
Here is the moon the following morning:

Here is today, not the moon, but just how gorgeous it is here this morning.
This is taken from the Smithfield Street Bridge.  I walk across it most mornings.  It's one mile to my office.  Good walk.

And here is more catch-up for LSNED:
Day 9 – Gratitude.  Well, this list is as long as day, but I have two constants in mind.  My Mom – always and forever.  My daughter, who keeps my house clean and, fancy that today was one of those days.  How grateful I am when I walk in my door after a hectic work day and find a sparkling, clean house.  It’s a wonderful feeling and I am so grateful that she wants to do it.  Thanks Amanda!!!

Day 10 – Organization is the bane of my existence (well, there are other things, but...).  There are mornings I have climbed my two flights of stairs at least five times (and that’s just going up) before I get out the door in the morning. So, I have refined my morning and evening routines.  This coming week will be the test.

Day 11 – Reading and studying the manual that came with my camera has been on my to do list forever.  I treated myself to a great little camera, but I have no idea how great it really is because I just look at that manual and it’s so overwhelming that I put it down for another day.  Recently, I was frustrated over the date showing up on every photo and just this morning figured out how to turn it off.  Don’t know what else I set or unset in the process. So, for the next few weeks, I am going to sit down and study that manual and really get to know just exactly what all this camera can do.

Day 12 – Learn from your mistakes.  Do not keep secrets or think you can handle it yourself – trust others.  This was actually learned a few weeks ago, but today is as good as any to reflect on how it all could have been handled differently. It’s over now, and although it won’t be forgotten, time will heal all wounds.

Day 13 – I love my weekends.  Absolutely.  My Monday through Fridays are pretty routine.  Not much changes – well, there are little ebbs and flows.  But the weekend – anything goes!  I very rarely sleep in – don’t want to waste a minute!!!  Weekends are for catching up with my Mom, shopping, eating out, doing odd jobs around the house, visiting, relaxing.  I love my weekends!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Playing Catch-Up. . .Again

So here we are in our 13th day of learning something new and I am behind. . .again.  I think that may be a good thing - shows how busy/hectic life can get.  Oh, and that's another good thing about blogging.  You can jump right in and pick up where you left off.  Now where were we??? Thursday, September 8.  TRANSIENT.  My entry for this day is: "And this too, shall pass."  And there will be a photo of my eldest.  And that's all I've got to say about that.  Except that the 8th also marked my Mom's 70th birthday.  She made dinner (not that we all didn't offer to take her to dinner), she wanted to.  And it was GOOD!
Her present from M&M&B - great kids!!!
Party guests:
Mike and Dad a/k/a Pap

The Cake - super yummy!

Blowing out the candles
Mom and Dad (sorry about the date, gotta figure out how to take that off)
Flowers for the Birthday Girl


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Day 7 A Lesson Relearned

What I relearned today is that only I am responsible for my own happiness.  Not the Mister, not my family, not my co-workers.  Being happy is a frame of mind, you can either choose to be happy, smile and have a good day; or you could choose the opposite.  This evening when Mister called and said he would not be able to make it over, I found myself feeling a bit blue and maybe a little angry towards him.  And then I realized how I was behaving.  Was I really going to spend the evening bummed and blame him??? Heck no!  I had things I wanted to do and I was not going to sit around sulking.  Besides, Mister and I always have tomorrow.  
Speaking of tomorrow, it will be my Mom's 70th birthday. It's hard to think of her as 70 as she is a 5' 2" bundle of dynamite.  She moves furniture, carries heavy bags of groceries, drives EVERYWHERE - this woman knows a shortcut to the corner.  Should have been a cab driver in NYC.  She's awesome, full of energy (wears me out) and just the best.  And I love her lots.  So, dinner, tomorrow, with Mom.  
Good night all!

Day 6 - Gray Sky, Good Day

It is a gray, rainy day.  
But that doesn't mean its a gray day.  In fact, I've had a lovely day, albeit busy, but lovely.  Lots of office work to make the day pass quickly. Oooooh, but my house was COLD!!! I hated to shut the windows, but I finally had to close a few.  It was a great night to get under the covers and watch a movie.  Did some reading, too.  Talked to Mister, talked to my Mom, talked to my daughter.  It's all good.

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Greatest Gift is Time - Day 5

It rained today. All day. It is still raining now; and there is a cool breeze; and the crickets are chirping and it's lovely.  I am sitting here thinking about my day and what I have learned and that is the greatest gift I can give is my time.  So, Mom (and I know you are reading this), don't ever think I don't want to spend my time with you. You are my best friend and we have such fun times together.  I know I'm not the shopper like Cath, but I try (4 hours is about the limit though) and I am grateful that you have learned to enjoy just watching a movie with me (you know you putz - though I can't complain too much, my house looks fabulous!) I love you Mom and always have time for you!!!!!
We did drive over to the grocery store though, the Dollar store and K-mart. Had a nice lunch (dessert was better) and watched Unknown - not bad.  I did do laundry, cleaned the kitchen, walked a mile. It was a lovely holiday. Now, I have a little organizing today - afterall, tomorrow is a work day.  Nite all!   

Happy Rainy Labor Day Weekend and Day 4

I don't mind the rain. I actually like it.  If K were here today, we would walk in it. Without umbrellas. The rain does keep me from concreting a hole in the sidewalk. Hmmmmm.
I happened upon this Irish saying which I found so appropriate for me (I can do it): If I did it yesterday, I can do it today, and if I did it today I can do it tomorrow"  Hit's a chord, huh?  So, today I will walk a mile, scrap another page, do a little office work, etc.
Let's catch up, shall we???? Saturday was lovely.  Okay, it was hot.  Mom, Mike and I went to the Strip District. The Strip is exciting. Lots of people. Lots of vendors peddling gyros and oysters on the shell, flowers, pastries and cookies - baklava, pizzelles, and cream horns, oh my!. Lots of excellent smells, er, except maybe the fish market.  Those smells are not so good.  We had breakfast outside at a little cafe.  We stopped in at the kitchen store in search of an old type coffee pot. It wasn't there.  At Mancini's we picked up some fresh, crusty baguette.  Oh, the smell of fresh baked bread!  We went to the Pa. Macaroni Co. to get soppressato, cheeses, that the line????? Uh, we changed our minds...and forgot to look for the coffee pot.

I bought three plants for $5.00 from a vendor.  Pretty, pretty potted flowers.

After the Strip, we traveled to Trader Joe's in East Liberty. That's where we bought the soppressato, cheese and herbs.  And a few other groceries, too. Then to Home Depot, or was it Lowes?  Home Depot for concrete. Sears for primer. Then J.C. Penney's to pay a bill and, low and behold, they had the coffee pot!!!  It's so pretty.

Home Sweet Home. And that was just Saturday.  I watched Tyler Perry's "Why Did I Get Married?" Not so much comedy, but good drama. I scrapped, too.
Sunday, Mom, Janet and I went to Bingo. It's the 1st Sunday of every month.  I won $30.00. Rah! Rah! Home again. I did laundry. Watched some tv. Read. 
And here we are today. I have lots I would like to do today.  But first, I'll walk that mile.  Have a great day!!!

Note to Self: K wants this pillow for Christmas.  J.C. Penney.

Saturday, September 3, 2011


I'm behind all ready!  I'll be spending this weekend working on my pages, but here is what I've learned so far:
Day 1 - Sometimes I'm surprised at the amount of work I can do in eight hours.
 Day 2 - Today, I'm one of the happiest people I know.

Day 3 - Energy makes energy. Go take a walk.

Well, I'm off for an early morning excursion to the Strip District.  The sun is shining, the birds are singing, it promises to be a beautiful day (hot!).

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Cover

I completed my Cover in the wee hours of the morning as I had a surprise visit from the Mister and then bowling.  So, I worked on my cover while watching the late night rerun of Project Runway.  (Thank goodness they repeat two hours after the first viewing, bowling so interferes with that show!)  Anyway, here it is:
I didn't see the first prompt until this morning and the second prompt has been issued, too.  Good thing we have a three day weekend!!
Well, I'm at the office and I have timeslips to do.  Have a great day!!!!!