Category Archives: Finally Friday

Because Friday is finally here and I need one day to talk about whatever comes to mind.

Competition and Abundantly Blessed

One of the games I play had a guild competition this week. A guild is just simply a group of people/players you’ve joined in the game and with whom you can chat. Well the game had a competition this week between the guilds. They’ve had a few others, so we kind of know what to expect.Well this one was a bit wonky! Some of our guild players opened the challenge and had hundreds, or in some cases, thousands of energy to play the competition, when normally you only get 120 charges of energy which allows you to play 6 times and then you have to wait for it to recharge or pay for some energy with gems. However gems are limited in the game, so they want you to pay real money to get more.

I was a bit jealous of those players that got thousands of energy charges. I asked questions and decided that I would not close down my game that night but did close my laptop, although I did not shut it off. I woke up the next morning and had 9220 energy charges!

Oh my goodness! I was so excited. And then I played and played and played and played and played . . . and I got really good at finding the objects hidden in the 6 locations of the competition . . . and then I got tired of playing those same locations so much. I realized that I do not ever want to have that much competition energy to use because the competition only lasts for 4 days.

That means that I was playing way more often than I normally do. It also means that I wasn’t really doing any of the other things I enjoy doing. At least I did take a break to get the Purk monotangle tile done for Wednesday.

I’ve been reading the Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson and haven’t hardly read any pages at all since the competition started and I really miss it. I’ve also not gotten much of anything else done around here. I’m glad it ended last night. However, before it did, I got another 700 energy charges or more.  :)

Sean made a quick trip to Virginia early this week. He stayed with our friends Paul and Stephanie. You may remember the art she and I did while they were here a couple months ago. (Copics, Embossing/Stamping, Distress Stains & Magicals)

Well, she was going through some of her art supplies and was going to get rid of some of them. Since Sean was there, she asked if I wanted any of them. Of course, I said I’d take whatever she wanted to send back with Sean.

After talking with her, I expected a few things. This is what she sent. :)

There are about two dozen ink pads and re-inkers in a rainbow of colors. :)

She also included some acrylic paint tubes and glittery watercolors, as well as some small and large tape rollers. Then there are the stamps and even a small die cut machine with a couple of dies. Not to mention the punches and stamp sets!

So much fun to be had! I am truly, truly, abundantly blessed!

I’ll have to share the things I make using these supplies in the future. Oh, did I mention the copper embossing powder or VersaMark pad? Yep, she sent those too! I sure am blessed! :)

I hope you have a good weekend. We’ll be visiting with Brian, Lauren, and Liam for a bit this weekend. :) I’m looking forward to it.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Down to Three and a Relatively Quiet Week

Last Sunday we went back to that one church that that didn’t have a pastor yet because they got a new pastor. They sent out a postcard notification, so we decided to check it out.

He seems like a really nice man with a great big heart for people and a desire to reach out to the community. But we did not enjoy his sermon nor his preaching style. Our church search continues.

In other happenings this week, Sean moved out. Of course he is not very far away as he moved a trailer onto our property since we have nearly ten acres. ;) Of course he doesn’t have all of his things out yet, so Tiffany and I have not filled it up yet :D

He was sooo packed in there. He played a masterful game of Tetris. :D But he had so much stuff that he thinks he’ll need a storage unit shortly. :D

But seriously though, we are going to move the exercise equipment into that room and the spare bed into the library. We’ll put a desk and other things we have extras of, like pillows, blankets, luggage, and such in there too.

It’s so nice outside. Although we didn’t get the low temperatures predicted, the temps did go down and it was lovely! :) I really enjoy the cooler temperatures. I was able to wear some long pants and a warmer t-shirt, instead of my usual shorts and tank top. :D

I prefer the temperature in the seventies, so it’s quite nice right now. However, it is supposed to go back up to the eighties in a few days, so I’ll enjoy it while I can.

This weekend seems to be a rather quite one. Next weekend we’re headed to visit our other son, daughter-in-love, and grandson. :) Tiffany and I should be working on the rooms next week and hopefully I’ll get to some art too. :)

Well, this is pretty short but I don’t have much to share, so I’ll run for today.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Diet, Mistborn, and Games

This week I’ve started my six week focus on releasing some weight. So far, it is going well, although I’m not doing so great with the exercise because I’ve been fighting headaches for a few days. But I’ve been doing really good with increasing my liquid/water intake and eating fruits and vegetables. I’ve also made an effort to eat at least one low fat, low carb meal or snack each day too. You can read more about that here, if you’re interested.

I finished the second book in the Mistborn series, Well of Ascension. It was really good and I love the characters! Unfortunately, since this is the second in the series, I cannot say much about it.

I like the characters a lot and enjoyed their development a lot. I enjoyed OreSeur and Vin’s relationship with him. I also liked Elend’s development and meeting Tindwyl. I did miss the balls/parties in this one though. ;)

Not much has been going on here. I’ve enjoyed reading my book and playing my game. There’s a game that I play and they’ve been having group challenges, so I’ve been playing a bit more than usual.

I haven’t played much of Cooking Diary lately though because in order to continue, I need more rubies and refuse to pay for them. I usually like the food truck events though and some of the rewards are rubies. I checked it out the other day and found I’d missed two food truck events with their anniversary. :D So I played it a bit the other day.

Well, I’m going to run, it’s been a light week. ;)

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Birthday ~

Family Fun and Books

Well, let’s see, last Sunday my oldest son and his family came up to celebrate the summer birthdays–his and his son’s. :) We haven’t gotten together in a while. And of course, I didn’t get many pictures.

First up was Brian’s birthday celebration. :)

And then Liam’s turn–he’s turned 4 this year! Where has the time gone?

It was a nice visit but too short. ;) It was nice to see most of the family (my middle sister and her family weren’t here).

We re-visited Okmulgee First Assembly of God last Sunday too. We got there during announcements because we took a wrong turn in our effort to find a shorter route. :D It was nice that they started on time; that has not been the case at most of the churches we have visited. ;) We’ll probably go again this week.

I started reading the Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson. I finished the first book and really enjoyed it. I’m ready to start the second one.

The magic system is really unique and not what I’d call magic because it uses metals and quite interesting.

I love the main and even all the extended main characters. I’m not sure which is my favorite–I love Vin and Kelsier but also Sazed, Breeze, Hammond and the others of the crew.

I did have a bit of a hard time with first few chapters though because it is a dark and harsh world. Vin survives beatings as a normal part of life in those chapters; thankfully that stops quickly or I’d have had to put it down.

I did know one major spoiler before I even started the book and am very thankful I did. It helped me with my expectations and not fall in the trap Tiffany had fallen into of looking for something that wasn’t coming.

I also read the first book in the Missing series by Margaret Peterson Haddix. It is an interesting middle grade book that includes time travel and seems like it could possibly be an interesting look at history. I’ve started the second one but got very involved in reading the first Mistborn book.

Well, that was my week. I’ve enjoyed the time with family and books I’ve been reading. I hope you’ve been having a good week and have a good weekend ahead.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Church Search, Reading, and Family Visit

Well, the last week has been rather uneventful. We visited another church on Sunday and although they are very contemporary, have a lovely facility, and seem to have great hearts, it is not for us.

They have a traditional service, earlier in the morning and then a contemporary service around 10:45. We attended the second service where they did use a small bit of fog and quite a bit of lasers. Unfortunately, it gives us an entertainment vibe which throws us out of worship. The entertainment aspect seems to disconnect us from the worship experience.

It was quite nice to have a water baptism that day. They actually included it as part of the worship service. Water baptisms always bring tears to my eyes, and especially when it is a child. The baptism on Sunday was supposed to be a mother and child but the child backed out; it was handled well though.

We also did not get anything out of the sermon. And one of the anecdotes he shared made be a bit defensive for my son’s beloved church. I wasn’t the only one that felt this defensiveness either. ;)

We’ve decided to revisit one of the previous churches again. It has stuck with Tiffany and I, so we think revisiting it will either confirm it’s a good fit for us or prove the otherwise.

I woke up yesterday morning with an old hymn on my mind. Then I got to thinking about the two churches we’d been to that seemed stuck in the 80’s or 90’s. Then I realized that it could be that they are singing the older songs and choruses to be free from paying royalties or licensing (or whatever it is called) for singing the newer songs.

The rest of the week has been rather uneventful. I’ve fought lack of motivation all week. I finished reading the Horse Dreams Trilogy by Stephen Bly. I really enjoyed this series a lot. I keep thinking about it. I liked reading about the west, even if the story wasn’t exactly believable at times. ;)

It is a Christian series so it is clean in my book, but I know some from stricter faiths would not agree, as there were a couple of kisses had between the three books.

What wasn’t believable for me was that in this extremely small town there would be so many Christians AND that all three of the bachelors she encountered were good Christian men, though each had his own flaws. ;) I still found it very enjoyable. Oh! Also the fact that our main character seems to make close friendships quite easily and that she was able to find the town she was seeking so quickly.

I’m looking forward to a spending time with my extended family this weekend! Brian, Lauren, and Liam are coming up and we’ll be celebrating our July and August birthdays–which happens to be Brian and Liam’s birthdays. :D

I haven’t seen my parents in a few weeks, much to my lack of motivation to do pretty much anything lately. I also haven’t seen my little sister and her family in a while either. So this weekend is going to be nice!

I’m going to run for now. I hope you have a great weekend.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Old Movies, Homemade Cards, Good Books, and More

Our friends left before it was even bright and early last weekend. :D They made it home at a decent time having driven the fifteen hours back to their home. It was so nice to have them.

Saturday Michael, Sean, Tiffany, and I went to the waterpark for a couple of hours. It was fun. I even went down the slide. :) Last time I went, Tracie and I just waded in the water and rode the lazy river. ;)

Sunday we visited another church. It would be an okay church to go to if there were no others to try out, especially since it is less than fifteen minutes away. However, we still have some churches to try, so we’ll see how it turns out.

I mentioned that Stephi makes cards. Well, she brought me a birthday card and a box of cards to give. :)

Here’s the card she made for me. I love how it is three-dimensional. :)

Here are a couple of the cards she made for me to give away.

They are truly lovely! It was such a thoughtful gift. :) I know she put a lot of time into it.

Our friends are not big movie buffs but we pulled out a couple of old movies to watch. The first we watched was How to Steal a Million with Audrey Hepburn. I think they enjoyed it. It is a very clean movie, if you can get around the deception in it. ;) Paul said it was predictable but enjoyable. :D I personally don’t believe it was predictable though. ;)

The other movie, although perfectly clean, is a little more risque, I think. But it was completely UNpredictable. :D It is If a Man Answers, with Sandra Dee and Bobby Darin.

This week started out good. Monday was reading day and I spent some time reading the last of the Lunar Chronicles, Winter. I enjoyed the series. We’ll talk about it on an upcoming video on our youtube channel, Joyous Jabbers. Lauren and I have read and enjoyed it. Tiffany is planning to read it soon. I’m hoping we can record a video with Lauren, talking about the series. :)

So, I finished Winter. Then I read The Mustang Breaker by Stephen Bly, which is the sequel to Memories of a Dirt Road Town. I immediately picked up the final in book in the trilogy, I Wish I’d Known You Tears Ago. I finished those yesterday and have now put them on my wish list. ;) Now I’m wondering which of his other books I should try.

We had a storm roll through Tuesday evening. Unfortunately the electricity went off for a while. That is not good in the heat. Since it was evening and had rained, it was cooler outside with the slight breeze. So Tiffany and I went outside and read. We sat in the chairs under the Mimosa tree, thus occasionally we’d get a bit of water dropped down on us. :D I was quite glad when the electricity came back on. ;)

I had a horrible migraine headache this week, that left me weak. It forced me to take a day off. I tried to sleep it off like I normally do, but it did not work at all. Tiffany was awesome and helped me through the day. I spent most of that afternoon playing games on the Switch.

We had a horrendous storm early Thursday morning. The thunder and lightening was so loud it startled all of us awake at about 4:30 in the morning! I’ve never seen the color red in lightening before but I did that morning.

I ended up needed to take a recovery day that day. I spent the day reading mostly. It was nice to finish the Horse Dreams Trilogy by Stephen Bly. Of course, those events all caused Tiffany and I to move our errand day. We don’t really like moving errand day but it’s nice to have the option. ;)

Well, I’m going to run for now. We don’t have any plans for the weekend. I hope you have a good weekend.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Spending Time with Long-Time Friends

Our friends Paul and Stephanie have been here this week. :) Stephanie was my matron of honor when Michael and I got married 33 years ago. Paul and Michael became good friends right away. We introduced them to camping early on and we have enjoyed many camping vacations together.

They moved and then we moved and they moved again. But through the years, we have remained friends. We may not see each other for a couple of years, but when we connect again, it is like we were never apart.

We have had an enjoyable time together this week, even though we haven’t really gone anywhere. We have simply enjoyed being with each. We’ve gone to the lake a few times to walk around–it’s a small lake and very small park–and enjoy getting some fresh air.

Early this week we went and visited with Brian, Lauren, and Liam. We ate at a new restaurant in the area–Eddie’s. It was delicious! Afterwards we went to Brian’s favorite place for boba tea and introduced it to Paul and Stephanie.

I got mine with only 1/4 the boba and it was much better for me than with the whole amount of boba.

After that, Brian showed us around where he works, at Life Church. :)

Brian loves his job and the fact that his day job furthers the kingdom. So proud of him. :)

Stephanie and I have had some art time. She has been doing stamping and card making for many years. I’ve never been very successful at stamping, so I asked her to give me some pointers. :)

She also showed me how to emboss. :) I’ve never used the embosser I got for my birthday last year. So she showed me how to use it. Thankfully, she said I got a good embosser and an excellent deal. :)

She also showed me how to use copic markers, which I have had for several years and never attempted using. I shared about that last Wednesday.

We’ve had a good visit. I hope you have a great weekend.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Major Cleaning for Company Arriving

Well, I didn’t get the craft room finished last week, so I kept working on it this week. The plan was to get it finished by Monday night and play stash and dash on Tuesday but I couldn’t bring myself to doing that. So I kept at it Tuesday and even some on Wednesday.

Oh my! It looks soooo much better even though I had to throw a bunch of stuff into a big box to sort through and find homes for in a couple of weeks. (Maybe I’ll feel motivated enough to go get a few pictures but it won’t be the same without seeing the embarrassment it was before. :o )

Okay, so I decided I could muster up the strength to go in and take a few pictures. These shelves were stuffed to the gills with not really any rhyme or reason to how they were stuffed. Just simply, put this stuff somewhere. ;)

I like to buy cheap fake flowers at Dollar Tree and make arrangements for the table. There are flowers stored in several of those boxes and some lights we like to put up in the kitchen/living room for times not covered by the fall and winter ones we have in the holiday boxes in the shed.

Those drawers were a shambles and I emptied every one of them and resorted them. There is now only one drawer that is not as I would like it but I had to stash some things in there the other day to just be done.

This is the box where a lot of things went that I’m not ready to deal with and will take a while to sort through . . . not this week. ;)

I started cleaning these next shelves earlier this year. The bottom two surrendered more easily but the top two were done this week.

There are painting supplies on the bottom shelf. The next shelf up holds my inks, calligraphy pens, other pens, embosser, and books on zentangle and typography.

The shelf above that has some game stuff on it but it now also houses some pouring art supplies and some wood burning supplies, as well as a basked that I have yet to clean out. ;)

Believe it or not, the games on the top shelf have been culled quite nicely. :) I’ve kept some of my kids games so that as Liam is ready, we can play them together (as well as any other grandchildren I am blessed with in the future).

We also culled the puzzles a little bit. I figured we’d put them together and then decide if we want to do it again. I’ve got a fun one to do this coming week with Stephanie that has Mickey Mouse on it. :)

I’ve also done quite a bit of culling in the servants’ quarters. ;)

I actually have some space here now. Of course, the ice cream machine needs to come back in here from the kitchen floor. :D It’s a work in progress.

Thursday we started cleaning the Library in earnest. Tiffany and Michael had done some a few weeks ago but it hasn’t been touched much since. This is the room our company will stay in, so it is imperative that we get it cleaned up!

Unfortunately part of that cleaning process was moving a bookcase and way too many books for one unit. Since I’m done with my homeschool adventure I no longer need the school books I once used but information does not have an expiration date on it, so I’m letting the kids decide what they want to keep and what they want to get rid of. We are boxing up all the ones they want to keep and storing them elsewhere and bagging up others and taking them to Gardner’s Used Book Store. Any that are curricula I may take them to Bibliomania.

This book case/ book shelves

was over here.

As you can see, there’s still a bit of cleaning to be done in here.

Well, today is a BIG cleaning day. Tiffany and I have a plan of attack written down. We will work for 30 minutes and then take a 10 minute break and then on to the next area. If we stay on track, we should be done and taking a nice rest by 2 this afternoon. Pray for us! :)

Oh! Although I didn’t get any pictures from the water park, we had a good time. It was a lovely, sunny day and nobody got too burnt. ;) I did get a bit sun-kissed and put a shirt on the last 20 minutes or so but it was a good time and no skin peeled in the end.

Well, that’s it for me today. I have lots to do and am looking forward to seeing our friends tomorrow!

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

PS. I guess I should clear this up: We added two rooms onto our house about twelve years ago. In so doing, that gave us one small room to get book shelves out of the hallway and living room and out of my bedroom. Then when Brian moved out about eight years ago, we were able to move the books out of the one room and put them into another, giving me space to put up other shelves and store things a little less congested. As my artistic endeavors have increased, so have the supplies needed. Although, the need for some of the old supplies (think kids crafts, like pom poms :D ) have diminished. This is also the room where I store bulky kitchen helps that are not used as frequently as others.

Deals, Good Friends, Yummy Salad, and Cleaning Up

It’s been a good week I guess. ;) Chicken breasts were only $1.48 at Winco this week in Tulsa, but we HAD to wear a face covering. Tiffany and I choose to wear scarves instead of face masks. These are thinner and we can breathe better and they are prettier too. ;)

Tiffany found an outside blanket for only $5 in the clearance section at Walmart. She will use it in the car when taking one of her dogs somewhere, like the lake or park or something. It was 50% off, so that was cool.

I had an emotional breakdown the other day because I’m just done being this weight!!! Yep, it was not good but kicked me in the gut enough to make me be more serious and have less splurging going on. So we are making it a point to exercise at least 5 days a week and eat lower calorie foods. We’re still doing THM (Trim Healthy Mama) but just renewing our mindfulness to how much we are eating, how often we are eating, and choosing the lighter options.

My commitment was tested when I went to lunch with my friend Gwin this week. It’s hard to believe that we’ve known each other for ten years now. Much has changed in these last ten years but we are still friends.

We ate at Braum’s. I figured that if I ate a light lunch before I left the house I could just get a sugar free ice cream there but as it turned out, my breakfast at eight lasted until nearly one o’clock. I opted to get a salad instead of one of the yummy burgers. It was their Strawberry Poppyseed Chicken Salad.

It had some blueberries, strawberries, pineapple, grilled chicken, almonds, carrots, cabbage, spinach, and romaine lettuce. It also came with packaged croutons, saltines, and no fat cottage cheese. The dressing was in a pouch, so you could add as much or as little as you desired. Well the in the first five ingredients there were three forms of sugar, so I opted to use only a tiny bit (maybe a teaspoon) on top. I added the cottage cheese to the salad too. It was quite good. :)

For those on THM, it was an E salad because of the fruit and the chicken was lean, so it fit the parameters. I just stayed away from the croutons and crackers.

We had a great visit. It’s been quite a while since we’ve had a good chat, so it was extra nice. Tiffany and her friend came by and got some ice cream cones (Tiff’s was sugar free but probably not the best choice ;) ) and sat with us for a little bit. Gwin is a trip!

I remembered at the last minute that I needed to take a picture and handed the phone to Tiffany. This is the result . . .

She’s fun to be with and I’m so glad to have her as a friend. :)

Well, we are supposed to use our rain passes at the water park this weekend. I hope it is a nice day, we have fun, and it isn’t too crowded. :)

Oh, I have been working on cleaning up the craft room this week and it looks worse than when I started! :o You know how that works, right? I’m getting rid of some of the things that I don’t need or use any more but they are now occupying floor space instead of the shelf space they were taking up. It’s just frustrating to have a bigger mess than when I started but it is necessary. That’s what I keep telling myself anyway. ;)

We have some dear friends coming next weekend and I’ve got to get things straightened up enough for them to have a decent place to sleep. So I’m on kind of a dead line and I’ve gone out of the house more this week than I have in a while. :D

I hope you have a good weekend. I’m hoping to see my parents at some point this weekend too. I’m missing them; it’s been a few weeks since I’ve been able to visit with them.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Incredible Pizza Tulsa ~

Incredible Pizza Fun

I like miniature golf but it is way too crazy hot in Oklahoma to play outside. Several years ago we went to an indoor neon mini golf  with Brian and Lauren and really enjoyed it. Then a couple years ago when our friends came we for a week, we went to Incredible Pizza in Tulsa to play their indoor mini golf; it too was neon but not nearly as cool as the one we played in McAlester.

Any way, we needed something fun to do when we went to Edmond to celebrate Brian’s birthday and Incredible Pizza was the winner–mostly because of the mini golf. ;) We went for dinner because they have a deal where you buy an $18 game card and get the buffet for 99¢. Yeah, that’s pretty good for dinner. :D

I promise, I wasn’t mad at all. :D I’m just not very photogenic. I did not eat on plan at all. I did eat a salad but I decided to just have fun and eat whatever I liked. Unfortunately, I ate a little bit too much. :D Oh well, live and learn.

After we ate, we played mini golf. Yes, it is a bit expensive for just eight holes ($4.50 or $4.00) but it was fun and we weren’t outside in the sweltering heat. ;)

Lauren beat us all this time! She even got a hole-in-one on the last hole! :D Unfortunately they didn’t have score cards, so we used my phone and just kept a running tally of what we girls scored. The guys played together a hole ahead of us.

Those are my girls! Love them to bits.

After we finished that, Brian and Liam played a game together.

He was having soooo much fun!

Then the guys and Tiffany played the virtual reality game. It too was expensive but they really really enjoyed it.

At one point they were all down on their knees. :D

We played the mini bowling and we all played different arcade games. Lauren and I played some air hockey (I won ;) ). I always enjoy air hockey and skeeball, which we also played. I’m not really any good at any of it but I had fun.

Michael and Liam both rode motorcycles and were in the same game together. So fun!

There really wasn’t anything I wanted to play, so I took Liam over to the kids ride section and let him ride.

There was one that we both did together too.

It was a fun day and we enjoyed ourselves. It wasn’t crowded at all, which was nice. And it was nice and clean.

After we left there we checked into the hotel and went for a swim. It was a good bit of exercise. ;) I took a book with me and enjoyed reading it after showering.

We had the air conditioner set pretty low because we all like to sleep in the cooler temperatures. It was a good thing because a storm came through and knocked out the electricity for about two hours! Consequently we did not roast.

I’ve stayed at this hotel before and remember the beds being a bit softer. Of course that was quite a few years ago. This time the beds were quite firm! Ugh!

We had hoped to swim before checking out in the morning but they don’t open the pool until nine. We decided to go get a little something to hold us over until brunch with Brian, Lauren, and Liam and were extremely glad that they were treating us to brunch because there was NO hot food. Yep, no sausage, biscuits, waffles, bacon, or eggs. Just some muffins, fruit, quick oats, cold dry scones, and cereal.

We met them at Neighborhood Jam and had a delicious breakfast! The Heap was delicious (not on plan but delicious)! I got pulled pork as my choice of meat on top of my hash browns with pico, avocado, cheese, and a biscuit with two eggs over easy on the side, by request — usually the eggs are served on the same plate. It was scrumptious! I think everyone enjoyed their breakfast. (I wrote a bit more about the wonderful food at Neighborhood Jam here.)

It was a really good time spent with family and look forward to next time.

Oh, we did end up going to the water park with my sister and her girls but it rained and we got day passes to use another time. At least we had about 45 minutes in the pool before we had to leave. The kids went down the slides, over the obstacle course, and down the lazy river at least once before the siren blew to get out of the water.

We got out and ate our lunch before it started to actually rain and then moved to the car. We sat out there for about another half hour before we could get our passes. It was nice to visit together and look forward to working out a time to use those day passes without a threat of rain. =))

Well that’s it for me today. I hope you have a good weekend. No clue what we are doing but I’ll enjoy myself, whatever it is. :)

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº