Reimagining the Simple Ikea Table

Ikea, you either love them or hate them. Personally, I find a lot to love about their simple designs and their affordability.

My son and his wife purchased this dining table seven or eight years ago when they were setting up their first home together. Recently, they upgraded to a lovely dining set that complemented their current home better and asked if I wanted the table.

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Escaping Through Crafts

It’s wonderful having my house back finally. The first thing I did was move all the furniture back into place and scrub the place top to bottom. I forgot just how much of a mess children can make in such a short period of time.

We baked together, played board games and shared books. Can’t think of a better way to entertain guests.

The birthday girl had a lovely day.  She asked for a Mulan inspired day. We weren’t sure how the boys would enjoy it, but enjoy it they did.  Dad even arranged for a face painter who was very talented.  You can see my youngest brother behind her (in the green shirt). Baby brother is the only sibling I keep in touch with but he lives a couple of hours from me so it was good to catch up with him and his wife.

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Winter Woes as Spring Plans Take Shape

Time seems to be flying, I wonder if it’s a symptom of getting older. Saturday my youngest granddaughter turns six.

soon to be six

Family is coming in from all over to celebrate which means another weekend of a full house for me.  People will be sleeping every where. I’ll have the upstairs filled, two of the little ones will be sharing my room with me and I’ll even have a guest on the couch.

Garden Plans

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A Prescription for Homelessness

I talk often about the problem of homelessness. I have been fortunate not to have been without a home in my lifetime, but there were many times I was a paycheck away from losing everything.


I think my concerns for people who live on the streets began when I was a preteen. I was living in an abusive situation and weighed which was more dangerous, staying in my current situation or running away.

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More Bathroom Reno and Teaching the Next Generation

Things on my house came to a bit of a stand still for a while this year thanks to my boys.  I figured since my oldest was working construction now I’d hire him. Problem was, he was took the fact that his brother legally owns my house to ask him what he thought of the work I wanted him to do. My youngest decided that I shouldn’t put my money into the house, and told him the house was fine and I should live with it as it.

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It’s All Your Fault

I was listening to a thirty-something year old comedic-activist who went on a rant that if you over fifty years of age the environmental problems his generation must deal with is all your fault.  While our environmental problems didn’t start yesterday I think this comment is too general and needs restated.


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Sharing Simple Skills

Each of us has unique talents and skills we can share with others.  There are times when we can work together using those unique skills to collaborate on a project.  Take for instance this letter I received one afternoon from my granddaughter.


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On This Valentine’s Day

What is Valentine’s Day and should we celebrate it?


Valentine’s Day began as a religious holiday to celebrate a religious figure in the Christian church. It has been co-opted into a commercial success by convincing us we need a special day to celebrate love.

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The Million Dollar Question

Early in life I realized there was more to life than how much money I could make.  I didn’t receive a great deal of pleasure from shopping or acquiring stuff, so a minimalist lifestyle was easy to adopt. I am happy where I am and don’t long for more.  Yet, that mindset can lead me to wonder why others need so much or how individuals can accept large expenditures on their behalf.


When I was nineteen my uncle openly bragged about the cost of insurance for his and his wife’s jewelry. I struggled with that one. Why would you spend money on jewelry that you then worried about so much that you would insure it?  Me, I loved to express my individuality through jewelry but preferred costume pieces that wouldn’t draw unwanted attention.

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Raising Boys to be Good Men

When I found myself pregnant with my first child I knew in my heart I was carrying a boy. I didn’t have the excitement one should feel when they learn they are about to bring a new life into the world. Instead, all I felt was fear.  I was so afraid I went to my doctor and through tears pouring out of my eyes told him I couldn’t have this child.


He asked me why? My only answer was that I couldn’t bear the responsibility for bringing another boy into the world who could treat a woman the way  his father had been treating me. I knew I wouldn’t be able to hold my head up and be proud to have raised a man who felt it was okay to beat a woman.

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