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Today is a Frankincense kind of day. Frankincense is earthy and balsamic and enhances inner strength. It is often used to enhance the health of your skin. It is one of the more expensive oils but one of two drops on your face and neck will renew helathy looking skin. It also reduces oil production for those of you with problems with oily skin. You can also massage it into the back of your neck or into the temples to help with relaxation.

Frankincense, for me, is one of the spiritual oils and especially during the Christmas season. It was a great gift for the Christ child and would be a great gift for a friend. I diffuse the oil for relaxation and spiritual meditation.

It helps reduce the depression that often goes with this season as well.Frankincense

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Almost Christmas

It is almost Christmas and the weather is beautiful in Orlando. Even though many say they don’t like the lack of seasons, I find the colored leaves reminiscent of Minnesota Fall.

Wondering what all my friends are going this Christmas and thinking of those who I have lost this year. Old friends are hard to come by and as we get older they are less and less of them around to talk with. I have several cousins and some old friends that I maintain contact with but none are very close and I don’t see any very often. I will see my grandchildren this Christmas and am looking forward to a trip North. Well only a couple hours north but a change from celebrating Christmas at my house. All families get to the point where they want their own traditions and this has finally happened with my boys and their families. I think of my mother at times like this and wonder if she was feeling the same ambivalence when we quit spending Christmas at home.

Mac was the first to refuse to come home and we spent many winter drives to Big Fork, MN. Then I was married and Christmas was at my home. We always spent some time at home in Breckenridge but I know it was never enough for mom. I have a much better perspective now that I am at the age she was at the time.

So I will look forward to change and adapt, say goodbye to old friends and family and move on through the season to what lies ahead in the New Year!!

Life is indeed change!!

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I am sitting at home thinking about Christmas past and it was significantly different than what I see my children and grandchildren experiencing today. I grew up in a family that was poor, at least our Dad convinced us we were but we were less poor than many of our cousins and friends in the neighborhood. Christmas for us was being in the church performance as some member of the nativity. We had to learn songs and presentations and bible verses. Christmas eve was always church and we received a bag with a candy cane, hard candy and mixed nuts(not the kind that are shelled). Christmas morning was one present, something we had wished for all year, and a stocking filled with an apple, an orange and once again mixeed nuts. There were no ipads or computers, we played in the snow, visited cousins, aunts, uncles and grandpa and grandmas. Our play was outside in the snow with a sled or ice skates. Christmas eve was at Grandpa and Grandma Sanborn’s usually with Alaskan King Crab and Midnight Mass. Christmas day was home in the morning and then off to Foxhome to be with all my mom’s family. It was incredible and we usually had to perform a song and gifts were exchanged. We drew names and set a limit but the gifts were somehow always amazing.

Christmas for my children will be a cruise with my oldest son’s wifes family and her brother’s family. Then they will spend Christmas at home for the first time in many years. Usually they spent it with me in Orlando but the grandchildren are getting older and wanted to be home. I will drive up for Christmas morning. I’ll be working from the 14-24th in Miami so a bit of a drive. Presents for them are many and of course a very special large one from Santa. My Indiana son, youngest, his wife and daughter will spend Christmas at his home and leave the next day to drive to Orlando to spend a week with me. I am sure we will have some Park adventures while they are here.

So what does Christmas mean to me. An opportunity to spend time with family and yes, I still attend church. I still enjoy the mixed nuts even though I have to shell them, and I am incredibly grateful that my children and their children have good lives and wonderful families. Is there any better Christmas than that? Yes, friends, extended family though far away, an older sister I love dearly and just thankful for each day I look down and my feet are above ground. Life is good, Christmas is different but the love and caring will never change.

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It is Thanksgiving week and I am still working to complete my word press site. Creating a site takes a lot more time than you anticipate and it is a constant challenge. Finding all the ways to alter the look of the site is a learning process in itself. I expected by adding themes all would be in place but I have learn found many things need to be altered and changed. I am trying to learn HTML5 and then CSS but never quite get to all of the “to do’s during the day.

I am in Indianapolis with my youngest son Tom and his family for the holiday. It is always a fun time as there are so many family members and friends in Indianapolis. The weather always leaves something to be desired this time of the year but warm family and friends helps one to endure the cold.

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Halloween in Avalon

I spent a few hours on the porch tonight giving out candy to the little ones.   I usually stop around 8 as that is when the big, greedy kids show up.  I was surprised that no matter the age, they all said Thank you and Happy Halloween.  Guess we have some pretty good families with manners in Avalon Park.  I miss my own grandkids.  Kelly and Hunter are on a Disney Cruise and Nora is in Indianapolis..just too far to drive for some candy.  I will be there soon though as I am planning a trip for Thanksgiving.

When I grew up we usually had snow by Halloween so the costumes weren’t too important as they were covered by our snow suits.  We really loved the lady that gave out whole Hershey bars and made sure we went to her house each year.  Then there was the other one that gave us pennies…what’s with that.  Our neighbor down the block always made the most incredible caramel apples, something we wouldn’t be able to give out today with all the fear.  Her last name was James and her family later purchased the Greek Candy shop and restaurant.  The kids were named LeAnna and David.

The trick for me on days like this is to try to remember names and places.  Costumes have definitely changed and this year seemed to have a lot of Frozen Elsa’s and Minions.

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Another Friend Gone

This not been a good week. I lost a dear friend this week. We grew up together and he was a part of our family. He was a brother to me and an Uncle to my children. You don’t often have friends that last through a lifetime but Tom Carman was one of them. He always called to make sure life was treating me well. When we were growing up he was my protector, my colleague at the swimming pool, and a companion for fun an wild trips to Fergus Falls.
We tormented the man at the trampoline center by doing back flips from one in ground trampoline to the other and made our getaway by jumping over the fence.
He was with me on many wild trips in a 39 Ford when the headlights would go out and we would drive by lightening or a large flashlight that Tom would hold out the window.
We had so many adventures and they are my memories, but I still will miss his phone calls catching up and reminiscing.
Goodbye old friend..I hope I will see you again at that big swimming pool in the sky.

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Chicago is Cold

Walking across the street in Chicago this morning and it is cold.  The leaves have turned so it is very pretty but still cold and a bit of drizzle to make the walk uncomfortable.  I think to night might be a Korean bar-b-que night with Cathy.  This will be my last trip to Chicago for some time which is ok with me as I do not want to deal with another wicked Chicago winter.

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Welcome to My New Site

Chahinkapa is a park in North Dakota.  When I was growing up we spent our free time at the park.  At the time park had a wonderful log cabin with a large stone fireplace.  In the front of the building was a wonderful store that sold gifts, crafts and wonderful hand made items.  Many of the items were crafted by local American Indian children at the Wahpeton Indian School.  I am hoping this site will provide the same warm and happy feeling I had when I walked into the old log cabin store in Wahpeton.

I love art, crafts, as well as reading, learning and just enjoying and experiencing life.  I have been blessed with two wonderful children and three grandchildren. They are central to my life and participate in many of activities I love.

I hope the site will provide some interesting stories, items to buy and just some general fun.