Welcome to Anybody Home!

Here you will find scattered pictures from my point and shoot camera, random thoughts from my little world, treasured memories of days gone by, hopeful dreams of the days yet to come, and a bunch of ideas - because I've always got ideas!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Look Who's Back in the Pool!

It's Hertsje!
This week she had a hard cast put on her broken arm.
And this cast can go with her into pools!
There were A LOT of people besides just Hertsje TRULY happy about this!

Friday, July 21, 2017

Collecting Collections

If it weren't for the fact that our wedding vows endowed us to each other's worldly goods, I would tell you that this desk and those pitchers are the things that THGGM collects.

But, it is safe to assume that they are mine now too.
That IS how it works, isn't it (please say yes)?
The detail on these small works of art is just lovely, don't you think?
They really aren't my "thing" but I have learned to appreciate them.
This one is my favorite.

I've put two strings of battery operated lights behind the glass.

It looks very pretty at night.

But it stays light so late, and we go to bed quite early, that we really haven't had all that much time to enjoy it.  Yet.

Oh, we are weird, and we know that too.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Today At My House

Wow! What a difference a day makes!
This was yesterday.
Originally we had thought of adding a deck over our existing patio cement.
When we learned that would cost many many THOUSANDS of dollars, we quickly nixed that idea.
When we added the pool, our neighbor came with his heavy duty compressor and filled it up in no time (THGGM was using his leaf blower to fill it).
They got to talking, the neighbor's business is concrete, so THGGM ask him for an estimate on extending the concrete.  It was very reasonable!  He hired him to do it whenever he had the time.
That time came yesterday.
We WERE just going to extend the cement where you can see the sod removed in the first picture, but the cement truck didn't arrive in time, so we got to thinking about redoing the ENTIRE patio, and..,
This morning the large pieces of original patio came out...
and in came the new concrete!
We can already tell we are going to enjoy this, and for only a fraction of the cost that a deck would have been.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Last Week Sunday at Meijer Gardens

Here are a few of the pictures from our visit to Meijer Gardens with our friends visiting from Maine.
Since we bought a yearly membership we went back again today to visit all the sites we didn't have the time to see last Sunday.
Both days had perfect weather, which is not all that usual for July, which tends to be hot and muggy.

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Friday, July 14, 2017


Just a few things that have happened around here:
Baseball is over for us. Jonge still has one more tournament for travel ball, but we won't be able to be there. I cannot begin to tell you how much I enjoy watching baseball games. I feel a bit sad that they are done. THGGM and I are almost at a lost for what to do with our evenings and weekends.
Last weekend's three travel games were in the city of Wayland. In between the first two games THGGM and I wandered through their downtown. We discovered an antiques place and a flea market. And OF COURSE I found treasure at both places.
On Sunday we had a "play date" with friends visiting from Maine. Breakfast at the Omelette Shoppe never disappoints, so we started from there, then headed to the Downtown Market as it was also the day for the VINTAGE market. Yes. Yes, I DID find a treasure.
From there we went to Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park. Oh, wow. We have been there several times in the past, but each time we go there is more to discover. And for a July day the weather could not have been more perfect. Oh, and I DID take 300 pictures, a few of which I shall be posting later. Since January, and through August, the gardens are hosting works of the Chinese artist Ai WeiWei. I knew nothing of him, but since I knew we would be going I did a minuscule amount of Googling about him. Interesting. The exhibit is well-worth going to see. Normally not my kind of art, but I found his story to be fascinating and his work to be extremely compelling. None of us had been there since the Japanese Gardens opened. Wow. They are lovely. I'd like to go back, and just spend the day there. Which we can do, since as we were leaving, we applied that day's entrance fees towards a Grandparent's Membership to the gardens. Can't wait to use it!
Earlier this summer, Hertsje was injured on a zip-line at a playground. She fractured the two bones in her arm "clean through" just above her wrist. Last summer she had her tonsils out, this summer her arm is in a sling. Poor kid. The only bright spot is that it should only take a month for it to heal. It did put an end to her soccer practises, and she can't get it wet, so no swimming. As you can imagine, we all feel badly for her. But, she is a wonder and handling it all very well!
And so far, the novelty of having a pool in our backyard has not worn thin, yet.
While those who can swim swim, I'm still sloooowly working my way through "The Wind in the Willows". I've lost my ability to block out noise while I read - which I suppose is a GREAT thing, since these children ARE playing in a pool - so the reading is going slowly and involves quite a bit of reading the same page over and over again (never-the-less, i persisteth). Anyway.., if you are familiar with the book, you will know how difficult it was for me to rejoice over the fact that THGGM was thrilled to have dislodged. disabled, and disposed of a mole that had been ruining his lawn. I do have to admit, I've seen moles before and this one was trophy sized. I'm sure if THGGM were a hunter of anything besides great deals on old furniture he would have mounted it's head and prominently displayed it in his den. After he removed the deceased he didn't go back to the scene of the crime. The next day, while swimming with her children Daughter pointed out in a Clue-like way, "It was in the backyard, with a hose, a beach ball, and a rock, and Pake did it." Not that any of us really wanted to KNOW that, but.., evidence.., and all that...
On the weight loss front I have lost a few more pounds. For two entire months of continuing to eat the same as I had been I was maintaining my initial loss, but not losing any more. So, about two weeks ago I realized I was going to have to "tweak" things a bit if I wanted to lose any more. I switched from half and half in my morning oatmeal and my three daily mugs of coffee to almond milk (although I still have half and half in my afternoon coffee, because i want to). I've added more vegetables in the form of cabbage soup (i buy a coleslaw mix, add it to a large bottle of low sodium V-8 and add whatever fresh vegetables i happen to have on hand) and my only treat is to put frozen wild blueberries into a cup, cover them with almond milk - which freezes when it touches the blueberries, and then sprinkle shredded unsweetened coconut or crushed almonds (or pecans) on top. If I feel I need sweetener, I only use Stevia. I do happen to know that this tastes best with half and half, but I remind myself that I will want it in my afternoon coffee, so USUALLY I resist that urge. This has to be eaten quickly, otherwise it's just a dish of mushy blueberries. The other thing I do consistently is drink 8 oz. of water first thing in the morning to which I have added the juice of half a fresh lemon. I know that adding a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar would also be helpful, but, I just CANNOT do that. A few years ago I could, but apparently I'm not feeling desperate enough right now to add that. You know, I need to keep SOMETHING for tweaking things up later.  Don't I? (please say yes.) In addition I've increase my consumption of fresh greens to which I add MORE fresh vegetables, a 1/4 shredded mozerella cheese, and then Zesty Italian dressing. Also, I'm trying to add back the two eggs a day. Somedays, I just can't do it. I add these tips because a number of people have asked how I've been losing weight. But honestly, I think a lot of it had to do with other factors besides just what I was eating. Like everyone alive, stress played into it quite a bit. Normally I would stress eat, but those scary lab results I got in February convinced me that I couldn't resort to that. There has also been family stress, job stress, financial stress, and the stress of simply watching the news.
This is the month that THGGM's present job comes to an end. This fact still seems weird and surreal. But, it's happening whether we are ready for it or not.
Judy and Anne at Meijer Gardens
Anyway, like I'm sure it is for everyone, the summer seems to be flying by at a ridiculously fast pace, leaving so many of the things I had hoped to accomplish undone.
Here's hoping that you are having a safe and blessed summer!

Monday, July 10, 2017

The Old Is New Again

Last weekend we went on a journey to an antiques store along the lake shore.
THGGM had found THE last piece of furniture he will EVER want. A piece he has been looking for his whole life.
At least that is what he told me.
I told him he would have to make a list of anything else he has been looking for his whole life.
He assured me there would be nothing else after this.
Yes. He says he is done now.
I, on the other hand, make no such promises.
My whole life I've been looking for little bits of this and that that make my heart sing when I see them, AND see the low low price they are being sold for, with bonus points for being vintage or having a Dutch theme.
That's the trifecta for me!
This piece is lovely, and don't get me wrong, I do LOVE it.
And the secretary that was in this spot has found a new home in our den.
I filled this up with green books, and the two Royal Bayreuth pitches with sailing vessels that THGGM has. A third one will take it's place on the top shelf tonight.
The glass in each pane is the original glass from the 1800's.
It has that really cool wavy effect of old glass.
THGGM noticed the price on this piece.
He realized it was a fantastic price, but out of our reach for a piece of furniture.
So, without even thinking it would be excepted, he called awhile after he had seen it to ask if they would except a certain price for it.
The shop owner said she highly doubted it but she would call the booth owner to ask.
THGGM got a call 45 minutes later saying that she WOULD except his offer. A VERY low offer.
That sent THGGM scrambling to find a way to transport it home.
He and Youngest Son wrangled it inside and got it all set up and I set to work filling it with treasure!
It is a plantation desk which opens just above the two drawers into a writing surface.