Monday, January 31, 2011

It's My Turn...

This week I am doing my civil duty.
This is my first time serving as a juror and I'm taking it seriously.
I have wanted to be on a jury ever since I started voting.
So this is exciting for me.

 Jury duty is as important to citizenship as voting  -  maybe more so.  Certainly, a citizen has more influence and power when serving as a juror than as a voter.
It is in the jury room that citizens get to actually influence the system to work toward Americans' highest commonly held political values . . .    the values we pledge to when we pledge allegiance to the flag of the of the United States of America, and the Republic to which it stands:

Liberty and Justice for All

I plan on riding the bus to downtown Seattle.
 It's about a 30 minute commute during the morning rush hour.
Which will be another exciting thing.
Never have taken the bus to Seattle.

So, what do I bring with me?
Walk Shoes
and I won't leave home without Him.

Norman Rockwell, Jury Room


 An effective juror must:
 (1) Be honest, forthcoming, and genuine;
 (2) Listen attentively and take good notes;
 (3) Ask questions if you do not understand; and
 (4) Listen to all the evidence prior to forming any conclusions about the case.

Some helpful hints:
(1) Speak loud enough for your fellow jurors to hear:
(2) No two jurors should talk at the same time. One juror should defer to the other when both want to speak;
(3)Don't be afraid to change your opinion, nor should you be afraid to hold fast your position;

Of course, these are general guidelines and you should always follow the rules of your specific jurisdiction, which will be explained to you by the judges and attorneys in your specific case.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Working Weedend

 This was my  "inspirational piece" I used to redecorate our living room, eight years ago.
Burgundy, Black, a little Blue, a little Taupe and a little Green.
Mostly dark colors.

 These paint chips, were my "inspirational pieces" this time.
I took away the darker colors and added lighter colors.
Some of our walls were already the color I wanted.
I just needed to paint over the Burgundy walls, the Parisian Taupe color.


I cleaned out the bookshelves. Goodwill was very pleased.

 I'm still thinking of adding the "drop cloth" curtains to this window.
But right now I'm enjoying all this light.

 This is the grand kids area.
You can see the old curtains.


I change the dining room to the living room for the Holidays.
This gives us more room for our Thanksgiving dinner.

This is a picture of our table set for a breakfast party.





Eeek! I didn't have any painting clothes. So I ran down to the thrift store and bought a long, skirted, jumper for $2.99.
Oh, so comfortable (I was climbing a ladder and sitting on the floor) and so darn cheap.
Plus, it was a cute jumper, so if anyone came to the door, I was respectable.
I'm saving this jumper for my next painting project!

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Retirement of the Garbage Can

 This has been our kitchen garbage can for so many years!
 Because we are "Empty Nester's" we don't need a
kitchen garbage can that holds a lot.

Then I spotted this beauty.
 My sister-in-law has one of these and loves it.

 Easy to install.
A sit down job.
Right up Tom's alley!

Only a screwdriver to install!
No Gorilla glue needed.
(Tom is band from using Gorilla Glue)
 Our old garbage can went to the dogs.
No, really!
It's where we now keep our dog food.



Stuff You Don't Want Anymore
You'd be surprised what other people can find uses for if they don't have to pay for it - you can give away almost anything, working or not, via free online listing sites such as criagslist, freecycle, FreeUse, and FreeSharing. If you live in a large enough city, you may also have a lot of success simply by labeling a pile of stuff on your curb with a free sign - just make sure you only do this during good weather and not on garbage day.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Sistine Chapel Virtual View

This is spectacular!! 
 Click on the link at the bottom.

 Here is an amazing bit of technology that you would never see in person, and you would NEVER be alone in the room. It is ALWAYS VERY CROWDED and of course you can't see Michelangelo's artwork close up as you can here.

This is especially spectacular if you have a large high-definition screen!
 In the lower left, click on the plus (+) to move closer, on the minus (-) to move away.
Choir is thrown in free. AMAZING! MOVE THE ARROW AND YOU WILL SEE EVERY PART OF THE CHAPEL. This virtual tour of the Sistine Chapel is incredible.
 Apparently done by Villanova at the request of the Vatican .
Thought you would enjoy the quality and a bit of Rome on your computer.  Amazing what can be done with technology.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Smiles! From Our Happy Home

 I've been finding more simles around the house.
Can you see this one?

 It's a Fungus that is growing on the old tree.

This is the "tree" that is in our backyard.

 This is one Big-Old smile!
It almost looks like Kermit the frog.

 It's my bird feeder just outside my kitchen window.

I've been finding Happy Faces and Smiles in some really
odd places, in and around our home.
Last summer, I found my first two, click here to see them.

Dayle, over at A Collection of This and That,
is hosting Simple Pleasures.
Please join us every Thursday.



There are over 18 different types of smiles that are used in a variety of social situations. For instance, people can use a smile to say a hello, and they can also use a different type of smile to show their understanding of a  particular situation.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Simple Pleasure


I was "HIT" really hard, by this song this week.
The words from Matthew West's song, Motions, is an eye opener for me.

"I don't wanna go one more day
without Your all consuming passion inside of me
I don't wanna spend my whole life asking,
"What if I had given everything,
instead of going through the motions?"

I don't want to go through the motions. I want to give everything.


This is my simple pleasure,
to give everything!

Dayle, over at A Collection of This and That,
is hosting Simple Pleasures.
Please join us every Thursday.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Year's Memory Box

 Kimmy made us memory boxes for Christmas.
 She got cigar boxes and covered them with cute pictures and coordinating material.

When I opened mine up, there was a note with instructions.

This is going to be fun!

 Tom and I headed out last Sunday for an adventure.
One of my favorite spots in the Seattle area is Alki Beach.
So that's were we needed up.

It was a B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L day!
Cold but beautiful.

 View from Alki looking at downtown Seattle.

 Beach Art

 This in our favorite cafe.

 Very eclectic. Always something going on.
Plus, the food is yummy.

 I couldn't resist taking a picture of Mt. Rainier.
When you live in the Seattle area, we say "the mountain is out".
Everyone knows what you are talking about.
No need for an explanation.

 We drove through downtown Seattle for this picture of the Space Needle.

After we finished our meal at the cafe, we were
given this sticker.
I knew just where it was going to go!
 My first entry to the Memory Box.

 Kimmy made Tom a New Years Memory Box, also.

She carved out the inside of this book!
Very cute!
Now, I wonder just what Tom will add to his memory box.
Any quesses?


Fast Facts About New Year's Resolutions
  • 63% of people say they are keeping their resolutions after two months
  • 67% of people make three or more resolutions
  • Top four resolutions:
    1. Increase exercise
    2. Be more conscientious about work or school
    3. Develop better eating habits
    4. Stop smoking, drinking, or using drugs (including caffeine)
  • People make more resolutions to start a new habit than to break an old one.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

A Tribute to Mike's Tree

This tree has been our scenic view, from our backyard, for over 27 years.
Our neighbor Mike, lives just on the other side of the hedge and
the old tree sits on his property.
 Today, this is our view.
Gone is the old Cottonwood tree, with all the Ivy hanging from it's branches.
Plus all the animals that once called it home.
Our backyard is quiet.

On Dec. 29, 2010, the Arborist showed up along with
a huge CRANE and a crew of eight!

Mike's cottonwood tree was massive, was old, was decaying,
and grew in a very awkward place. A crane was the only way to take it down.
It had to be set up in another neighbor's yard.

People came from everywhere to watch and say good-by.
I wasn't the only one taking pictures that day.
Of course, it snowed the first day.

Here is a close up of the crane.
This is as close as I wanted to get.
 The crane was used to hoist the tree trimmer up and over the house,
 over the backyard and then into Mike's yard.
 The tree was so sick, that it wasn't safe for anyone to climb it.
During storms, branches landed everywhere.
Damage was done to several properties.
The reason it had to come down.

Mike's tree was well known around the neighborhood.
We all knew of the damage it could cause. We also knew of the generations of
different animal families that called the tree their home.
It could be seen for several blocks.

 This is the trimmer being hoisted up 150 feet,
 to the top of the tree.
 His chainsaw dangling from his tool belt.
Doesn't it look like he is waiting to get a ride from the airplane?

I had a front row seat from my backyard.
 I'd step outside every once in awhile, to check on
the agonizing progress of taking down the tree, and to snap more pictures.
I wanted to document saying goodbye to this tree.

It's a slow struggle for both the tree trimmer and the tree.

You have to look very carefully to see the tree trimmer.
He's right there in the middle of the picture.
He removed the small branches first then began on the bigger limbs.

I could hardly recognize the old tree after the first day.

The second day started out with beautiful clear blue skies.

Here the trimmer is attaching a rope to a limb.
Next, he would hook it to the crane. 
Once detached, the crane would swing the limb over the house (a scary moment)
and onto the driveway.
 The ground crew then took over. 

Here the old Cottonwood stands, naked but sturdy,
taking it's punishment. Only a few more hours.

Sad moment.
The tree trimmer has conquered.

This is the Cottonwood's lower trunk.
I'm standing with the Crane Operator, Bill.
I'm smiling through my tears.
Third and final day.

 This is the guy that was swinging up in the tree.
I just call him Tarzan!

 That old tree filled three truck loads of chips.





Tom and I would often sit on the back patio and watch all the
raccoons, birds, and possums play in the
branches of Mike's old tree.
 I will miss it's shade, on those really hot summer days!
I will miss watching the mother raccoon, scolding her young ones.
I will miss watching all the different birds landing on the branches.
Good memories!
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