Category Archives: Finally Friday

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

Snow, Deals, and Busy Days

We had a LOT of rain last weekend. There was a “Celebration of Life” service at church last Saturday and it rained so much that we were flooded in. Then it got a bit cooler and we actually awoke Wednesday morning to some snow on the ground. Now I really enjoy watching the snow come down but it was really nice to see a bit on the ground when I got up that morning. :)


(I’m having a bit of internet/site trouble with pictures, so hopefully I’ll be able to get them added shortly.)

Michael made a very small snowman with the snow on his van and sent me a picture of it. He called it an Oklahoma Snowman. (I really hope I can share the picture soon.)

Sean had federal jury duty this week and had the foresight to ask what the procedure would be if we got snow. They ended up calling the jurors and notifying them that they’d start an hour later.

We had about an inch to an inch and a half of snow on the ground and cars but the cement blocks were clear, so we were pretty sure the roads would be as well. As is usual around here, it didn’t stay around long. By Thursday it was completely gone an din its place was some very wet ground.

Tiffany and I got some good deals on errand day. I got chicken breast for $1.06 a pound. I got about 20 pounds of it. Then I got a package of two pork butts at $1.15 a pound which is great because the best I’ve gotten it before was for $1.49 a pound. It ended up being about 16 or 17 pounds total weight. I also got some sausage for about a dollar a pound. I’ll have to check the ingredients out a bit better, I hope it’s good. I got these and a Red Baron frozen pizza for $2.70 at Cash Saver. It’s a bit further north than I prefer to go but we needed to go to Gardners (used book store) and trade in some books. Gardners is just a little over two miles from Cash Saver, so it worked out good.

We also popped in Ross to see if there were any clearance sales, as was stated by a youtuber but unfortunately we found nothing, last week or this week. There is a new store next door to Ross called WinCo. It is a Sam’s Club/Costco type store but without the membership fee. There were a couple dozen cars in the parking lot and the door was open, so we peeked inside. They were still putting up shelves and things but there was an employee there that gave me the information. Oh, they’ll be opening early February. I’ll be interested to check it out when it opens.

I haven’t spent any time with my family outside of my home since the first of the year, which is not like me at all. But I’ll visit with Tracie for a bit today and have her girls spend the night–I know they’re looking forward to “cousin time” with Sean and Tiffany.

Well, I hope you have a great weekend; I intend to.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Exercise (Ring Fit), Bujo, Something New, and Getting Back to Routines

Well, let’s see . . . what have I done this week? I’ve been consistently working out with the Ring Fit Adventure on the Nintendo Switch. I actually enjoy doing it and yesterday I even wanted to play it again later in the day but of course I didn’t because I’m already sore. ;) A good sore, the kind that let’s you know it is actually doing some good, but sore all the same.

I’ve gotten back into my normal routines, pretty much. The mopping and such hasn’t happened yet but I’m confident I will get to it on a regular basis again quite soon. ;) I made my new chore page in my new bujo and really like it. It is appealing, so I may actually look at it a bit more often and thus get it done more than not. ;)

In the past several years, I’ve really liked sparkly washi tape; so my go-to washi tapes were my glittery or foil ones. However, so far this time around, I’m preferring florals. It will be interesting to see how the rest of my pages turn out.

Glitter Washi tape ~

Speaking of which, I’m way behind in getting my pages set up in my bujo (bullet journal). It’s really quite sad. At least I finally started using my new one. I just decided to skip a bunch of pages for the rest of my planned collection pages and for some future collection pages and even skipped a couple extra pages for my beginning monthly pages. Then I just started with a to-do list last Friday. I did draw a pretty little banner for that day but nothing else. I haven’t used it every day but I have used it several days.

I’m feeling so behind this year. Michael and Sean have been home for the last several weeks and that always throws a kink into how my days go. But they’ve gotten some work this week and it has been wonderful to start getting back into the groove. ;)

I started the Show Me Your Drills month long ‘class’ for learning the basic strokes of modern calligraphy. It started on the 6th, so we are nearing the end of the second week. I didn’t accomplish the drills every day this week but did manage to do quite a bit yesterday.

Tiffany and I made our first library trip of the year yesterday as well. They are remodeling, which is great and horrible, all at the same time. It was quite loud and the children and young adult sections are not all available. But Tiffany and I both came away with our allowed ten books each. We’ll upload a video on our Joyous Jabbers youtube channel tomorrow sharing what we got.

We popped into Ross this week when we ran into town and we found this really lovely journal. It’s called Talk to me Jesus, His words to you. I read a few lines of it in the store and my heart was pricked by some of the words.

“I talk to you day and night. I love to talk to you, to tell you things, to teach you, help you, and guide you.”

“Come! Come to Me, dear one. I hear your heart. I hear you when you lack energy and courage. I hear you when you are tired. I hear you when you feel pressured and stressed at life’s demands. I tell you, lean into Me and rest for a moment. Breathe in My presence.”

“Listen for Me early. When you awaken in the morning open your eyes and your ears at the same time. As the new day coaxes you awake, allow Me to kiss your thoughts withMy words. Allow My voice to caress your mind with Mine.”

Isn’t it pretty? :)

I read those snippets from the first several days and a couple other snippets as I thumbed through it and was sold. For $3.99 I had to bring this journal home with me. On the facing page to the writing for the day is a journal page to write my words to Him. Yesterday I chose to respond to the words on the opposite page, with my feelings about them and how they made me feel. I really think this is going to be a treasured keepsake. AND I think it is an answer to prayer.

You see, just a few days ago while in the shower I was praying and asked God to help me want to want to spend more time with Him. For him to help me hear Him better and deepen my relationship with Him. Then I found this journal. :) Yeah, I think it is an answer to prayer.

Well, I think that is enough from me for this week. I hope you are having a great week and working towards accomplishing your goals for this new year.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº


LOTR, Ring Fit, Bujo, and Organizing

Well, I don’t really know what to say about the last week. It’s been a slow one around here with Michael and Sean home. We finished our Lord of the Rings marathon, complete with the Hobbit movies.

I’ve been working out with the Ring Fit Nintendo Switch game. It really does give you a good workout. Yesterday was my tenth or eleventh day using it and my muscles are definitely feeling it. Of course that’s a good thing. So maybe I’ll actually get fit. Now if I can just close my trap and stop exercising my right arm (to mouth ;) ) I might actually lose some weight. :D

I cleaned out my table and moved the art stuff I don’t use on a regular basis to the craft room. Then I started cleaning off the shelves in the craft room, sorting out the stuff that I no longer need to keep but that the kids may want for their future home educating endeavors. :)

I’ve gotten two shelves cleaned off and sorted on the floor. But I stopped there for the day and have yet to get back to it. I keep getting myself sidetracked from finishing it.

I’ve started working on my bullet journal. I just wasn’t ready to do it earlier. Tiffany was sick and the guys were home and so I just wasn’t into working on my bullet journal pages or even writing in the new one at all. However I’ve been working on it for two days and only have my Year-at-a-Glance (Future Log) and about 3 other collection pages completed.

I realized on Monday that we’d completely forgotten to do a video for our youtube channel the week after Christmas and then Tiffany wasn’t feeling good last week and we didn’t get one done then either. So, hopefully we’ll get one done and up in the morning.

I’d add more pictures but I’m too tired to do so today. I’m working to be a bit more productive next week. ;)

I hope your new year is going well.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

New Year’s Eve Fun

After Christmas Tiffany got sick. Yuk!!! :o Then a day later Michael got sick too! :p I talked to my sister about whether we should get together on New Year’s Eve (like we usually do) or not. Tiffany and Michael felt that they could med up enough that they could feel like being there, so we went. Especially since last year we didn’t get together because my niece had a fever.

When we arrived I finished my taco bites and we all munched on the snacks available. There were pigs in a blanket, pinwheels, meatballs, chips, dip, oreo balls, peanut butter balls, and chicken wings. We ate too much–yes, several others proclaimed that they’d eaten too much as well. I even had some of the off plan foods (with lots of pleasure ;) )

I didn’t snap a single picture that night. So all these pictures are thanks to family members who had mercy on me and sent them to me. :p

Ashlee wanted to play their Banned Words game. We formed two teams, younger against older, and had fun. Before you go thinking that it wasn’t fair to the younger ones, you should know that first, the youngest one is eleven and oldest on their team is twenty-two and they won. :D

This is the older team without Sean in the picture.

After that we played Tenzi and used the 77 Wqays to Play Tenzi cards too. We were able to talk my parents into playing it. The selling point: you don’t have to think to play it. :D

More Vacation News ~ Lifeofjoy.meIf you haven’t played Tenzi, you really should try it. It’s fun with a group. And it is super simple, even young ones can play. I wrote about it before here.

After that we were within an hour of the new year, so we began cleaning up the food. Michael to those things out to the car right away. :D By that time, Sean started packing up the xbox and stuff he brought and put it in the car too.

Then we got out our sparkling juices and Mom began to pour, while Tracie searched for a countdown on tv. I’m still not sure which one we ended up watching but I think it was the New York re-run (seeing as we live in the central time zone and NY is in the eastern time zone and thus an hour earlier than us)

Mom got these tiaras, hats, and necklaces, along with some horns many years ago. The horns have since died and many of the necklaces have disappeared or broken but we still use these for a few minutes each time. :D Thankfully our menfolk humor us and join in on the fun.

Sean is still wearing his coat from taking his stuff to the car and waiting as Tracie finds an appropriate countdown. (Hey, if you have an online suggestion for me, I’d love to know. I think streaming would be so much better.)

Not the best picture of Michael and I but remember, he wasn’t feeling good and I was caught off guard. Looks like I might even have just taken a drink too. :D

I’m so glad that Brian and Lauren sent us a clip of their countdown with Liam. Soooo cute!


We clinked glasses, gave hugs, put up our glasses, removed our hats/tiaras, and were out the door by 12:01 according to the car clock. :D

Somehow I think that maybe the car clock may be off a few minutes. :)

I hope you all had a great kick-off to 2020 and that we all get and stay healthy this year! :)

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Christmas 2019

We had a good Christmas again this year. Of course it doesn’t seem like Christmas should have come and gone already this year; I feel like time really does go by so quickly any more.

It was very different not having Brian, Lauren, and Liam spending the night on the 23rd and being here first thing on Christmas Eve, although they did get here nice and early. I hope they will be able to spend the night next year. ;)

On Christmas Day we went to my sister’s home along with my kids and my parents. It was a good day. Mom read the pop-up nativity story, as usual.

I’m so thankful that Dad felt strong enough to read the account of the birth of Jesus this year. (I read it last year because he was a bit weak from having open heart surgery.)

He’s gotten all techy on us and read it from his bible app this year. :)

This year we voted on our Christmas dinner. For about five years we had Mom’s homemade pizza but then it got to be too much and we went with easier things. But since Tiffany and I make pizza nearly every week, I figured we could alleviate some of that work.

My brother-in-law got a KitchenAid professional mixer for Christmas and helped Mom use it to make the dough. She was amazed at how much easier that machine made making the pizza dough. I made our sourdough on Christmas Eve before I went to bed so that it would have enough time to ferment properly. (Of course, I had to get out of bed to do it because I’d forgotten to do it. :D )

In the several years we had it for Christmas dinner, we got it down to a science. We put the name of the person/people that the pizza was specialized for on a paper and tape it to the side of the oven, so we remember whose is whose. :) Then that paper follows the pizza to the counter so that everyone gets exactly what they wanted. :)

The biggest thing about pizza for dinner is that we don’t get to all eat at the same time. By the time Mom’s pizza comes out of the oven, the kids are already done. ;)

I went for my walk after lunch, as I was getting tired and a bit full. The walk helped me wake up and not feel so full too. I came back in to find that they’d started playing Taboo.

Liam played with a lot of us. He went on the walk with Michael and me. Tracie brought out a bin of toys and sat down and played with some foam blocks with him. :)

He had a lot of fun and brought a lot of joy to us too!

Tiffany found my Tenzi cards and so some of us played that after dessert. ;)

Yeah, the temperatures were in the high 60’s or low 70’s, so I was barefoot and in a short sleeve t-shirt. :D

It was a great couple of days. Yesterday the four of us just stayed home and pigged out on all the desserts we had. Of course, we ate our leftover pizza too. ;) I did manage to empty the dishwasher and get the kitchen in some semblance of order.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend. I’ll share my art loot that I got for Christmas soon. I look forward to playing with my goodies and sharing that with you too.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

A Party, a Road Trip, a Wedding, and Snuggles

Well, it has been a busy week. :) We started last weekend with our church Christmas dinner/party. I was very disappointed to find out that Mardels no longer has the computer system where you can burn a cd of nearly any soundtrack. So I was unable to get a soundtrack for either of the songs that we had been asked to sing at the Christmas party. So I asked my mom to play the keyboard for us and changed the song to one I knew well. ;)

This was actually the first time they sang with me. I really enjoyed it and hope they’ll sing with me again sometime (and that we’ll be asked again). I did try to get Michael to sing with us but he just wouldn’t, even though he’d sung the song with my family shortly after we’d gotten married, so he knew the song. ;) But I love him any way. :)

I’m a horrible selfie taker! :D But this was Michael and I. And here are my parents and Tiffany.

We were singing a few Christmas carols. :) It was a nice evening.

The littles stole the show though.

Then on Tuesday my nephew got married but lives in Missouri. So Tiffany and I rode with my parents to the wedding. It was a pleasant drive and pretty once we got in MO because it had snowed.

I enjoyed a bit of reading and am really enjoying the book (Alaskan Holiday) and cannot wi to get a bit more time to read. :)

Daddy was a truck driver. I wonder if he misses it.

The newlyweds, their kids, and our family.

We got some baby cuddles. :)

Sarah, Dante, and me. :)

Mom and Dante above, Tiff and Dante below.

Even my dad got some baby cuddles.

It was after dark by the time we got home. I didn’t get my zentangle tile done and since I hadn’t done a single piece of art all week, unless you count the packages I wrapped ;) , I didn’t have a thing to post on the blog. So I ended up doing the tile first thing Wednesday morning.

Lauren is great and checks my blog most days. As I pushed publish on the post for the day, I received a text from her letting me know that my blog wasn’t updated. :D Perfect timing!!! I’m so glad she checks for me. There have been a few times when I scheduled a post to publish at a wrong time.

Well, I’m going to run. Should be a fun and busy weekend, preparing for Christmas. Baking will be in full swing by Monday at the latest. :) I hope you are enjoying your holidays!

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Family Fun with Christmas Lights

We have older vehicles, so Michael prefers to rent a car when we travel to see Brian, Lauren, and Liam. We met them at Cowboy Chicken restaurant for dinner.

I have to say that it wasn’t as good this year as I remembered it from last year. Don’t get me wrong, it was still good but I think next year we may meet and eat in Yukon instead of Edmund.

We like to park in a lot beside the park the lights are in and walk through. Lots of people drive through but I prefer to walk through. It’s so much more enjoyable, plus we can all walk through together. :)

They have a lot of photo opportunities throughout the park.

With this lighted Santa, Grandma showed Liam how it is done.

Then I held him up to get his picture taken. :)

Tiffany cannot refrain from anything gingerbread because of her book. (Murder Mystery and the Gingerbread Cookies)

There is a headless snowman. This year they put spotlights on these for the best photos.

This sleigh even has reindeer. Last year Liam and I took pictures with the deer. ;)

Such a good family picture of my son, daughter-in-love, and grandson!!!More photo ops. As you can see, there are a lot of photo opportunities. We even make ones where they are not intended. ;)

We Three Girls! :) Most of these pictures are thanks to Tiffany but some are also thanks to Lauren and Brian! My kids help a momma out! :) (And I definitely photobombed this one. :D ) Father and daughter Lauren really liked this dragon claus so they needed a picture with it. :) This cowboy santa and cactus are sooo cute. I love the poinsettias but it’s hard to see them in this picture with all the other lights in the background. :) This fountain was animated. This singing Christmas tree was  right up front and so fun.With my new painting endeavors, this rainbow painter was really cute. Pirate Ship The lights were soooo pretty and it was such a nice walk. It was a bit chilly but it was nicer than last year. Of course, we were better prepared this year than last year. I wore a fleece over top of my nice comfy long sleeve shirt AND a windbreaker. I seldom wear that many layers. We also came with hot chocolate in a thermos.

I hope you enjoyed the pictures. We sure enjoyed ourselves. Liam had a lot of fun and it was fun to watch him enjoy it.

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Our Thanksgiving 2019 and a New Tradition

It is hard to believe that Thanksgiving was just last week but alas, it is already December sixth. My mom went to my sister’s house earlier in the week and helped her and the girls set the tables in preparation for Thanksgiving dinner.

The tables looked very nice.

My middle sister and her family live in Missouri and weren’t able to make it or this would not be enough to hold all of us as they add another seven to our numbers.

My brother-in-law is a jewel and loves to cook, so he does most of the cooking with Tracie there to help. Brian and Michael help some too, whereas Sean prefers to clean up. ;) (And I’m so glad he does.) Some years I have chosen to fix dishes that stay more closely on whatever eating plan I’m on at the time but this year I decided that eating the Trim Healthy Mama way, which includes crossovers of both carbs and fats, that I would just not sweat it.

I did make some spelt rolls and baked them fresh that day. I’d also pre-baked some sweet potatoes and re-heated them just before dinner, so I didn’t do much. I usually am in charge of mashing the potatoes and I botched it this year. I guess I’m too used to mashed cauliflower because I made them too thin. But when I’d tasted them to see if they needed any more milk, they were grainy, so I thought they needed more . . . uhhhh, nope. :p

After dinner Liam, our 3-year-old grandson, decided to play on the piano. Not one to miss an opportunity like that, my mom sat down beside him and began playing some Christmas carols. And of course, we girls chimed in too. :) It was nice.

He did get bored with that but the caroling wasn’t yet over. So he was played with as the singing continued. :p

He got me on the floor to play with Tracie’s magnets on the refrigerator and got Tracie to play play doh with him.

We started something new this year: we voted for Christmas dinner. We listed the things we’ve done before and then allowed a write-in option as well. I can see this being something where people campaign for their favorite meal in years to come. :(

We did have a write-in vote of Tacos, so I can see that being an entry next year, as it garnered 4 votes. :D

Tiffany and I put up our tree on Wednesday before Thanksgiving and then went over on Monday afterwards with my sister and her girls and helped Mom put up her new, smaller tree. It was nice to all be close enough to still make those memories with Mom and Dad. Since we have Thanksgiving at my sister’s house, we can’t put up Mom and Dad’s tree that night. For the last several years, Tracie and her girls went over and helped but this year Tiff and I joined too. :) She rewarded us with noodles cooked in ham broth (something I shouldn’t have eaten but did anyway ;) ). Oh, I was offered an on-plan snack but ham noodles won. :D

This weekend is Christmas light weekend. :D So next week I should have some fun pictures to share; that is, if I remember to take some pictures. ;)

I hope you have a great weekend during this wonderful time of the year.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Thanksgiving ~

A Day of Rest (Mostly)

It’s lazy Friday for me and mine today. I know a lot of people are out and about, hustling and bustling, doing a lot of shopping. I’ve only done that a couple times in my life. Most of the time I just enjoy being at home and relaxing.

I’m not sure what I will do today other than edit the vlog to post on Joyous Jabbers tomorrow and read a book. I may do a painting and I will probably go for a walk at some point, because I *need* to do that for my health. But other than that, it’s going to be a very chill day. :)

I enjoyed being with family yesterday. Liam banged on the piano for a minute so my mom came and played some Christmas carols. It was fun to sing together. We played Quiplash again yesterday too. I even walked the long driveway a few times with my daughter-in-love, Lauren, even though it was quite chilly out. We had a nice chat as we walked. I’d have walked a few more times but it was quite chilly and my boots weren’t exactly walking boots. :D

It was a good but tiring day, so I’ll keep this short and have some pictures to share next week. I hope you are having a great holiday weekend!

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Shopping and Self-Care

It’s been a good but rather normal week, meaning not much to write about today. And then I think back to last weekend and remember, hey! Michael and I went out on Saturday! Yay! I do have something different to share. :D Well, I did share about this some on Monday, so it’s not really news, now is it. Oh well. ;)

I won’t repeat myself from Monday, so if you are interested in where we went to eat, pop on over to Monday’s post.

We also did a little shopping looking for items for Michael to put on his Christmas wish list. He saw this mug that he loved the look of, but would it pass the grip test?

Ultimately it did not pass the grip test and we did not find any red mugs that met his approval either. :p (He had a very serious tester face on there.)

We did find some things that made him smile. (He loves to laugh.) On one of his new video games that he plays online with some people that he has played with for over a decade, he has a ghillie suit and loves it. Well, he found this hat while we were shopping and just couldn’t keep from putting it on and making us both laugh.

Oh what a loon! :D I love him abundantly.

Tiffany and I visited my parents one day this week. It was so nice to be able to drop over for a bit and just chat. Then the next day we saw them at the chiropractor’s office (they were coming as we were going) and we talked more as if we hadn’t just spent a couple hours together the day before. :)

When we’d arrived for my appointment, one of the gals told me that I have a delightful family. :p I think so too.

Of course that appointment was just the beginning of our errand day! We made seven more stops. We had about three more we should’ve/could’ve done but we were both tired . . . and just plain done. We were both so thankful that I’d put dinner in the crock pot before leaving the house that morning.


You know, I’m an odd duck. Yep, I am. The vega testing revealed that I am stressed. I don’t think I’m stressed but my body thinks I am. Thankfully there is some kind of cut-off switch somewhere that doesn’t let my conscious mind know that is the case. ;)

It appears that some of the reason I’m not losing weight very easily is because of the stress. There are some other things going on too. I had him see if there was some supplement I could take to help my eyesight because I’ve just felt like something is amuck with it for a while now.

As it turns out, my body tested positively to a couple supplements and I’ve begun to take them. It seems that vitamin B5 will do a lot of good for my system and I have begun to take several capsules of that daily. Oil of Oregano is another supplement that tested as being helpful to me right now. It sure is a good thing I like oregano because a while after taking it I get a little oregano flavor burp . . . interesting. At any rate, it is supposed to help in a few areas as well. (I love it when one supplement will help in different ways.)

Another thing I was admonished to do was that double 4-letter word–exercise. Walking is a good stress reliever, as is yoga/stretching. So, I am making a daily walk a priority and when weather is against that, I have some Wii “games” that will help. Of course, Tiffany can help me with that too.

There is a lady at church that told me about a classic stretching show she does most every day and although I don’t get the channel, I did find it online a few weeks ago. I’ll look for it again and have it ready to use because the weather is supposed to be colder and maybe even rainy the next few days and I may not be able to prod myself out the door. ;)

Well, that’s it from me today. I hope you are ready or all planned to be ready for Thanksgiving next week. I know I am. :) But then Christmas will be here before we know it. I got some more of my Christmas shopping done today and hubby picked the items from my list that he wanted the kids to help him get for me, last night. :) That’s a first! Usually they are the second week into December and then scurrying around. :D

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº