Time to Celebrate

I have been savoring this week as a time to recuperate from the busyness of the week before. I loved every minute of the time spent with friends at All Write, but it was exhausting too. When you only have three days a year to be with special people, you have to take advantage of every minute.

Monday was a day of exploring mentor texts in my office with Kim. It was our only day to talk books. Sadly she left very early Tuesday morning.

The rest of the week was spent catching up on the life that continued while I was playing (learning) in Indiana. I celebrate that this time is available.

My husband and I escaped from the mundane of every day life this weekend. The main objective was to use a gift card for a meal out. It was a lovely meal, but dessert is always the way to finish it off in grand style. So I leave you with a tempting treat for your eyes.

Profiteroles filled with ice cream. Yum!

Profiteroles filled with ice cream. Yum!


Today Kim left. It has been an action packed week of fun, fun, fun. On Saturday, I listed some highlights from each day. There were so many moments worthy of being a true slice, but I don’t have the time or energy to develop them properly. Some of the moments will live deep in my heart as memories to savor. Here are a few more glimpses into my past week.

My one little word this year has been sweet. I have found sweetness in being with friends and family. These people are especially important in difficult times. So it was particularly sweet for Kim to bring me a gift bag with some “sweets” inside.


The first stop on my tour of St. Louis for Kim was the botanical gardens. The Climatron had a special exhibit with Lego sculptures incorporated into the plants.

These strange critters were mostly made of Legos.

These strange critters were mostly made of Legos.

I took lots of picture of flowers and plants. Perhaps these photos may appear in another post, but here are a few to give you a glimpse into the gardens.

These gates had Chihuly glass. There were other places throughout the gardens with more of this glass.

These gates had Chihuly glass. There were other places throughout the gardens with more of this glass.



Elizabethan herb quilt garden.

Elizabethan herb quilt garden.

Not everything was plant based in the gardens. We spotted several geckos wandering about.

Not everything was plant based in the gardens. We spotted several geckos wandering about.

The Arch is a must do for any visitor to the city.

Kim snaps a picture of Cardinal stadium from the top of the Arch.

Kim snaps a picture of Cardinal stadium from the top of the Arch.

Dinner with Slicers and Tweeters and others was a wonderful way to cap off the day.

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Christy is all smiles.




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Tam and Ruth, wonder what they are focusing their attention on.










ruthRuth inspired and filled hearts with her opening message. I wish it had been filmed and saved on You Tube. It would be a video to view over and over.

My day was spent with Mary Helen, Tammy Shultz, Franki Sibberson, and ColbySharp. Each one nudged me to think in a new way.

After the entertaining dinner with Barry Lane, a group of us sat outside visiting. Eventually we had to move our talk inside, but it was fun to visit with new and old friends.group

Friday came too early, and once again my thinking was pushed by Martha Horn, Kristin Ziemke, and Kelly Gallagher. This evening had a perfect ending. Dinner at a delightful restaurant with very special friends.

Next week, I will share the adventures of map reading. Stay tuned.





Days of Celebration

Every moment this past week has been a celebration. It began as soon as Kim arrived Monday evening. We stayed up too late talking that night.

Tuesday was the whirlwind tour of St. Louis in the heat and humidity.

Wednesday began with a road trip to Warsaw, IN for the All Write conference.The dinner (arranged by Ruth, thank you Ruth) was a veritable who’s who in educational blogging.

We made it to Indiana!

We made it to Indiana!

Thursday began the conference with a special keynote address by Ruth. The message was full of heart. It was difficult to get up and head to other sessions because you just wanted to sit and savor her words. Another memorable dinner with Barry Lane entertaining with his message.

Friday was a day of learning with Martha Horn, Kristin Ziemke, and Kelly Gallagher. The conference ended, leaving minds spinning with new knowledge and inspiration. But the best part of the day was having one final dinner with a group of friends. It was bittersweet, because we knew our time for talk was coming to an end. These ladies are very special in my life, so I savor every moment we get to spend together.

Dinner with friends

Dinner with friends

Today begins the road trip back home, but Kim and I will continue to celebrate all the sights and flavors along the way.

I hope you had a celebration filled week too.



It was May 2012, I was in southern California, and I knew a new blogger from the March challenge was somewhere near. I thought about contacting her. I had her email because she had commented on my blog. Do I reach out or do I return home wondering what would have happened if I contacted her? The first week went by, I did not contact her.

During the second week, I clicked send and an email was sent into cyberspace. My heart thumped in my chest when I saw a response in my inbox. Did she want to meet? Yes! She did want to meet me!

We met for lunch, but it wasn’t long enough. We talked for several hours, but still it wasn’t enough. However, it had to do for that first meeting.

The next year we met again. This time we spent the day together. Still it wasn’t enough time.

Then I hatched a plan for her to come back to the Midwest and we could have a road trip to the All Write conference. That might give us enough time together. 🙂

Monday was a waiting game. Waiting for Kim (from Learning Tour Writing Stop) to arrive. She wasn’t due to land until 8:40 p.m., but her flight was early. I was still ten minutes away from the airport when she called to tell me she was here. That was great because we have so much to do. It was a late night of talking, but today our adventure begins.

If you are reading this in the morning, we are on our way to St. Louis for a quick tour. If you are reading this later in the day, we may be on our way to the top of the Arch. Or we could be at the Botanical Gardens. But if you are reading this after dinner, we have eaten an Italian meal on The Hill (click here for info).

Wednesday morning we will head for Warsaw. The next two days will fly by with lots of learning and meeting friends from the slicing world. Before we start back to Missouri we hope to visit the Amish area north of Warsaw. Rumor has it there are garden quilts to view.

The next few days will be fun, fun, fun!



Top 5 Celebrations

What can you celebrate? Share your celebrations with the world at Ruth Ayres Writes.

What can you celebrate? Share your celebrations with the world at Ruth Ayres Writes.

The week began with my most joyful celebration, but first I will count them down.

5) Lunch on the patio yesterday. The weather was perfect! We enjoyed leftover quiche with a slight breeze, birds chirping, and a warm sun (not hot) to accompany the meal. We don’t get many perfect days like this.

4) A neighbor prepared a delicious dinner for us as payment for my husband trimming her bushes. It was comfort food extraordinaire.

3) Another dinner out (see reason 2). Oh happy day, no cooking for me!


Stepping out of my box with a grilled Caesar salad with calamari

Stepping out of my box with a grilled Caesar salad with calamari

Can it get any better than flourless chocolate cake and mint chip ice cream? This is the way to end a meal!

Can it get any better than flourless chocolate cake and mint chip ice cream? This is the way to end a meal!

2) We celebrated our 37th wedding anniversary. This happy day began with breakfast at The Aviary, a crepe restaurant in town. Yum!

1) The number one celebration were words from my son, (I’d been waiting for almost five years to hear this sentence.) “Allie’s pregnant.” Joy does not fully express how happy those two words made my world.

What a great week!


Creepy and Crawly

The darkness of night obscures things that might frighten you in the light of the day. You just have to trust that you are safe in the dark. This trust lets you sleep through the night and awaken when the sun rises to face a new day. Are you fearful or fearless each night when you lay your head down on your pillow? Several nights ago, my trust was shattered.

Something brushed against my neck, bringing me out of my sleep, but yet not fully awake. I moved my head on the pillow and out of the corner of my half opened eye I saw movement. That was enough to put me on high alert. Sitting up, heart pounding, I discovered a centipede scurrying across my pillow. Ewwww! I snatched my pillow and hustled into the bathroom, balancing the offending critter so it didn’t fall off. Quickly I shook the pillow and it dropped into the toilet. Soon it was whisked away in a whirlpool of water. (Side note: I did feel a pang of guilt, but the hour of the night did not allow me to release it into the wild.)

I returned to bed, but examined the bedding for any other critters. I laid my head down, but still felt the whisper of movement against my skin. I jerked my head up and scanned the pillow surface. Nothing there. It was a long time before I settled down and was able to fall back asleep.

Sleep did return, but each night I wonder what is hiding in the dark.

It’s Okay to Celebrate

This past week has been an emotional roller coaster, but even in sadness there are reasons to celebrate.

Monday was the visitation and memorial service for my father. Family and friends gathered to support the immediate family impacted by my father’s passing. An uncle I have not seen for over forty years came to honor his brother. My cousin and his wife made the long journey from Wisconsin to Missouri to be with family. The family felt and appreciated the outpouring of love from all those who attended.

Tuesday brought a military farewell. It was a moving ceremony but also a celebration of the military service of my father. My brother spoke eloquently of the service, from all aspects of life, our father had provided.

I celebrate my friends who have been beside me and continue to check up on me. We met for coffee this morning. It was a celebration of togetherness. I know they will be there if ever I need something.

It’s okay to find celebrations, especially in times of sorrow.