Hard to believe it’s already the middle of May…

..oh wait, it isn’t, is it?  Here in central Indiana it sure feels like it.  I think it topped off at about 77 degrees today…sunny..a light breeze.  Very pleasant.  Of course I had to work all day (have tomorrow off tho and it’s supposed to be even nicer tomorrow…is that possible?).  Customers were coming in wearing shorts and flip flops…this is still March, right?

don't these make you smile?

My relaxing final day of vacation

Ahh…don’t you just love being on vacation, staying home where you can get a few things done, get some rest, catch up with all of your activities?  Yeah…like it ever really happens that way.

I haven’t thoroughly cleaned the house during the time I’ve been off.  I didn’t go shoe shopping so I’ll still be wearing the same uncomfortable shoes at work tomorrow.  I didn’t write any extra blogs or do any blog research.  I didn’t get anything written in my book.

What did I do?  Well, I did get back to a daily exercise routine.  I did cook some healthy foods.  I did do some housework (just not everything I wanted to do).  I did get back on SparkPeople.com to track my exercise and nutrition.  So the vacation wasn’t a total loss.

This morning I went to the little gas station/convenience store just down the road to get a newspaper (wanted to read the sports page about IU’s win over Michigan last night).  When I came back out to my car, I went to put the key in the door lock to unlock it and noticed that the key was broken.  What?  It hasn’t felt like it was weakening or anything and it wasn’t hard to turn.  I was able to unlock the door because the broken off part of the key was still in the lock.  Of course I couldn’t start the car.  And did I have an extra key?  Uh…no…I hadn’t gotten around to that yet..argh!!

So I called the car dealership (thank goodness I’d brought my cell phone…had considered not bringing it), and they said they’d have a key waiting for me if I could find some way to get there.  I called one of my friends (thanks, Donna) and she came and picked me up to go get the key.  Once I got back to the car, I had to take it in to the dealer to get the broken key out of the lock.  Sounds easy, right?  Nope.  They couldn’t get it out with their tools so had to take the panel off and take the lock out…finally got it all put back together, got my new key and made it back home…only three and a half hours after I left on my short errand.

But now it’s fixed, ready to roll on in to work at 6 am…ahh…vacation…it was nice while I was on it…and to end this on a positive note, it was a gorgeous spring day here in Indiana today…oh wait, it’s January, isn’t it?

Rough day…what a pain in the…

A typical examination room in a doctor's office.

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…shoulder.  I’m not really sure what I’ve done, but I’ve been having terrible pain in my shoulder for the past few weeks.  Sometimes it’s so bad that I have a difficult time lifting my arm.  This wouldn’t be good in either arm, but it’s my right arm and I’m right-handed, so I guess I just keep making it worse every day.

I haven’t gone to the doctor yet…I know, I know…I’m terrible about going to the doctor.  I have to be just about dead before I drag myself in to my doctor’s office.  But I’m thinking it’s time to make an appointment.  I keep going to work, coming home in so much pain that I can’t even sleep.  Ahh sheesh..whine, whine, whine…I know there are lots of people who live with intense pain each and every day.  At least I’m still able to go to work…and maybe get my butt to the doctor so I can feel better.

On a lighter note, I had the day off work today…took a walk and took some pictures…

pansies on my front porch

isn’t this just the best shaped tree?  and I get to walk by it every day.

beautiful…I love spring!

On spring and gardening in Indiana

Daffodil flowers.

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Ahh…spring in Indiana…the forsythia gracefully swaying in the breeze, the stately magnolias braving the possibility of a freeze, the cheerful daffodils bobbing brightly in the sun, sweetly scented hyacinths sending forth their perfume, curly leaves of tulips forming the bowl from which the riotous flowers will spring.  The colors, the scents, the textures…no artist can paint a more beautiful picture.

As I was walking today, I was able to experience the full spectrum of all that spring has to offer, including sleet and snow!  What in the world?!  It is almost April…high time to put winter weather behind us. At least when we get snow now, we know it won’t last long.  Today was no exception…no accumulation and now the sun is shining and reminding us that spring truly is upon us.

With spring comes the urge to garden.  Today I decided to spend a few minutes looking at the seeds I have and planning what else I need to buy (Yes, I know the perfect time for this is in January…just didn’t manage to get anything done in January…no time like the present).

I like to grow several varieties of lettuce in the spring and early summer.  And now is the right time to get spinach and radishes planted too.  Tomatoes and peppers need to be started so they’re a decent size to set out once the danger of frost is past (I usually push this by planting some in pots that I can bring inside if I have to).  Today I planted one planter of mixed lettuce and radishes as well as two types of tomatoes (Roma and Big Boy).  I also planted three types of peppers (bell pepper, jalapeno and my favorite, a four-way hybrid from Burpee). 

I will very likely buy seedlings from farmers at my city’s farmers’ market.  I’ve managed to find several heirloom varieties that way…some I liked and some, well, not so much.  When you garden, you never know exactly what you’ll get.  Sometimes the weather works against you.  Last year was a great year with my peppers, but the tomatoes didn’t really produce as I’d hoped they would.  Whatever happens, it’s a joy to get outside and play a part in feeding yourself all the produce that’s just bursting with flavor.  It won’t be long before we can be taking a bite out of a big juicy tomato fresh from the vine.  That makes today’s snow a little more bearable.

Spring brings hope to a weary world

Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocepha...

Image via Wikipedia

There has been so much bad news all over the world in recent weeks. Coupled with the terrible weather we’ve had all winter,  it often appears as if hope is dying all around us.  But every once in a while something miraculous happens to remind us that we really can make it through the bad times and find joy again.

When I came home from work today, I went out back to fill the bird feeders.  It was then that I noticed the tiny miracles happening in my own back yard.

Daffodils getting ready to bloom.  These flowers have come up every spring for the past several years.  And if that’s not miracle enough, the truly wonderful thing about these flowers is that I found the bulbs stuffed away in a cabinet (I’d bought them and then forgot to plant them), all soft and mushy.  Thinking they were dead, I threw them in the small flower bed under my kitchen window.  Imagine my surprise (and delight) when daffodils came up the following spring!  Just one of the tiny miracles that are everywhere.  We need only  notice them.

It won’t be long before these cheery little flowers will be in full bloom…

Chives coming up again.  This poor little plant sits outside in a big pot all winter long.  Everything I’ve read tells me it shouldn’t survive, but somehow it does…another small miracle in my life.

This weekend I’m going to start my tomatoes and peppers from seed…a sure sign of hope and faith.  Think about it, those little seeds somehow have everything within them to become huge plants that supply us with the most nutritious and flavorful foods.  If that’s not a miracle, I don’t know what is.  So here’s to the miracle of spring when hope springs eternal (sure wish I could take credit for that phrase!!).