December 2012


100_0171As  the year comes to an end in another day…

It seems that the boys were just screaming HAPPY NEW YEAR yesterday..but in reality—it was a year ago….

I seems like I am still in my 30s… but that was a LONGGGG time ago…

no regrets really… for I truly believe life happens the way it does for reasons….

I look back at all the events of this past year.

Many famous people died, tragic shootings, an election came and went  that totally surprised me, and feeling thankful that I have a job in a time when so many do not.

This year we got to 302763_838411284938_494358476_n[1]100_0646witness our grandchildren growing, and we got to connect in a personal way with our “birth” grand daughter who has grown up to be a camping KOA Canandaigua 7-23 - 25 069beautiful young lady. Her adoptive parents were generous enough to let us spend some time with her. Time which was so precious to my heart.

We have had crazy weather, imagesCA3QUWSSa Hurricane that really did phenomenal damage to the Northeast Coast. We watched as the space program took it’s last voyage. We wept with those suffering from violence and we smiled at those who achieved their goals.

We watched our niece get her license, we camped more. We got to share time at the family reunion with a part of our family, and we witnessed 2 couples wed.

We lost weight , we gained weight, we had a semi successful garden, and disappointments from it too. 100_0621We adopted a dog, and we found a true companion. We witnessed the affects an abusive past can have on a dog, and have worked very hard with her , so she can trust life will be okay.

Yes as 2012 leaves and 2013 comes in, the fear of the future of our country lingers in my mind….and the hope that people can come together for the better of all of us.

I hope the media starts to focus on the good and not the ugly. We should know not the evil ones… we should know those who bring good.

Happy New Year to all…. I hope you find happiness as the New Year comes to our doorsteps in less than 48 hrs. !!.AS I look back, I am thankful… and I am looking forward to all the goodness next year can bring. Love to all. Mrs Justa, alias Cindy

AS the days head to the end of 2012, the media and government are creating , for me at least, a vision of insecurity for the country.

The phrase “Fiscal Cliff” is the catchy phrase of the month..the past few months.

And yet as I am shaking in my boots over what this really means for us..the citizens of the USA… the President takes a vacation, congress goes home to their families, and I feel the countries future is placed on the back burner while people have down time.

Well I do not know about you…but I really want these people that have been elected BY THE PEOPLE to be doing their damn job, and work for the PEOPLE!!.

Oh I have read this and that…Some end 8-11 and fair 9-2-11 003and really it seems like once again we get it up the whazoo!. So the average family is looking at over 2000.00 dollars in increased taxes…and that good ol’ Health Care Reform..well let’s see—I bet your premiums have increased… how about money out of your pocket for medical expenses—did that go up??? Or maybe you work for one of the businesses who are forced to cut your hours so they do not get fined for their inability to provide health care. And you might be in a situation where now you are one of  those  who have to now face a HIGH DEDUCTABLE plan— things are changing. I have no idea what our taxes will be on our property or school going forward.

As we slide over the “CLIFF” and we see our personal taxes go up..we also see many things in the government be taken away. I read milk could double in price, because as the cliff appears- so does aid to farmers disappear..and cuts in military, cuts in cost of living for our seniors, ..it seems like we are just always expected to keep on giving…

Than there is the weather dramatics…..

The weather people have won the award for DRAMA QUEEN in my book. Now they are naming winter storms, and this past one we got this week—well one would have thought we were going to be buried alive by mounds of snow…. yet the storm totals were 1-2 feet…Yeah it was nasty, and visability was down..and I am glad I did nto have to drive in it…but I remember once MArk and I were in the city and were advised to head home than or wait out a storm that dumped  3-4 feet of snow on our roof!….

Heck..I remember not so many years ago when I looked out the window and saw just an antenna on my car…. So between us falling off the proverbial fiscal cliff, us losing more money due to Health Care Reform, and the treacherous winter storms with names now… well I think we are all going to end up with major anxiety disorder….

The sad thing is we can not do a darn thing about the sensationalism….except try really hard not to let it consume us.

Off to watch the news … LOL…. Have a great night., Love to all,. Mrs. Justa.. alias Cindy

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Finally I get to post on last weekends Christmas Craft project. We had the boys on Friday night last week and I had thought they are old enough to make Christmas gifts for their parents. So Saturday morning, after breakfast the kitchen became the craft land. Foam picture frames, and foam designs to stick on them. The kids could choose the colors and what ever they wanted to stick on their frames.

Than I let them look through a bunch of100_0611 photos and they both chose photos that were similar. We taped the photos to the frames..and cleaned up for

project number 2.

100_0616Making light catchers. Fortunately the store had similar ones so they each had the same thing to do. We had such fun…but I knew I could not post the fun till today…

Christmas…when the packages got picked up to open we had each parent have one of the gifts… This became exciting..hands everywhere, pointing and rustling the packages. The boys were so proud. 100_0667I wanted this shot of all the hands….

Than I zoomed back to get the faces… I think Jeff’s face says it all…unfortunately I was not able to get Amanda’s smile too…but I think the boys gifts were a surprise…

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I remember when Jeff was little he loved making Christmas gifts for people. Suncatchers, potpourri , model cars, drawings… it was fun to watch the different gifts be created. I am thankful we had the boys at the right time to be able to do this.

Christmas was quiet this year… Mark and I got up around 8, we did not exchange gifts this year… we really did not have anything either of us wanted from the other. We had gone shopping together, but walked out with no needs, so it was quiet. Yesterday was a day at the emergency vets with Riley..she has Hemorrhagic GastroEnteritis (HGE). Kinda scary. She was fine on Sunday night, but Monday morning she would not eat, seemed like she could not get comfortable. Mark and I noticed something was wrong, but we could not figure out what….and fortunately I was watching her outside when she tried to move her bowels, and it first looked like a garden hose of bloody water, than it was really mucous filled… ..So off to the emergency vet… they did some tests, gave her fluids, antibiotics and an anti nausea med and we got to bring her home. She is on a bland diet after 24 hrs of clear liquid. Boiled chicken, chicken broth and potatoes. We will try to wean in regular food in the next day or so… we are still waiting for her to have another bowel movement to be sure she is not still bleeding. I guess that dogs die very quickly form this if it is not treated… had I not seen her water show yesterday..who knows what would have happened. I read a lot on line when we got home and quite a few people have had their dogs die from this within 24 hrs… yikes.!!

We are cautiously optimistic that she is getting better… I hope so.

I hope you are safe wherever you are… enjoy the next few days…looks like huge snow storm up here tomorrow night and Thursday… grrrrr. One day closer to spring…

Love to all, Mrs Justa..alias Cindy… Merry Christmas everyone…

Have you ever been so afraid that the fear takes over you?

And what caused you to have that reaction? What things could have happened to make you so scared?

I ask myself that over and over again as we try to work with Riley and her almost Godzilla strength when she starts to freak out. As I posted a couple of posts ago—we had to d/c the big open crate and go with the solid crate.

Well, she was in the crate Thurs evening for a few hours… actually what we know is she was put in the crate at 5:30… We returned at 8:30 and she met us at the front door… Somehow..she got the door backwards, over the stopper that is supposed to keep it from going backwards into the crate, 100_0618

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How she got the 2 spring loaded posts out of their designated holes for locking the door..and how she got the door to go over the molded door stoppers… I will never know.

We had to take the entire crate apart to get the door back in the correct area. !

SOOO. I have wiped it down, we have taken it apart and we are trying her in the house with out being crated.

Riley is the most gentle , non aggressive dog we have ever come across. SO I can not imagine how she can bend the crates…

It really urks me how someone could have neglected or abused her before she was found and brought to the pound.

 

Riley comes home 6-29-2012 022This was Riley the day we brought her home.

She was not sure what way her life was turning. She did not know us, she could not tell us where she had been or what she had gone through.

But when we called her name..she cowered and belly crawled…

She has come a long way… now she looks at us differently now.

She loves her sweater….100_0621

We got it for her because she gets cold outside,. We got her a second one today.. a Christmas one with white fake fur on it !!

At least her eyes are not so sad anymore.

And today we tested her in the house for an hr. She appears to have done okay. The electric collar keeps her from barking…and that seems to keep her calmer. 100_0597

The kids love her..she loves the kids…

Hopefully we will be able to have her crate free..

And although it is not right to wish evil thoughts on people….whoever owned this precious dog before and treated her poorly… whoever let her go…dropped her off… whatever they did to have her be labeled a stray…. well I hope you pay for your cruelty you did to her.

And also.. thanks for being jerks… we have an awesome dog because of YOU!!!!.

I am off to pet our dog now….

Love to all. Mrs Justa alias Cindy…

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“Jesus is holding the little children today. Many of them kindergarteners.”

From…Trust in the Lord ~

I post this quote and artwork because I found it comforting . How often are we in situations where we feel totally alone, tonally let down by life and the events of life.

This past Friday, screams of sorrow,  people from near and far in disbelief , as young children, teachers , employees of the school were exposed to an act of violence I have trouble comprehending.

I have thought a lot about this, About the families and loved ones left behind. I have thought about the relatives of the man who did this. I have thought about all those people in the school who tried to protect the children from this evil that lurked within.

In times of evil, in times of heart wrenching pain, there is goodness in the air. People helping people. Strangers coming to help comfort, provide what ever they can, pray.

I find myself saddened as I age , watching the hatred in the world. I remember a time when I was much younger, when it seemed I was shielded from the ugliness in the world. But the older I get, it seems the more my eyes are open to.

I have heard people say that this evil is now… it was not before…. but I believe evil has been around since the beginning of time. It is how we deal with evil, how we find a way to help instead of harm.

In times like these..when tragedy hits…. it is so easy to lose faith, to blame God… but I believe God is right with us crying too. I believe God is trying to comfort us, even when it seems the world is shunning him.  God kept  out of schools, people trying to re-write the Bible to fit their needs, ..and yet….. when tragedy hits… whose house do people gather at? And why…. because everyone is welcome in Gods house.

I feel awful for the parents, awful for everyone affected by this… and I find myself needing to get lost in prayer to find light when darkness falls….

Love to all…. Mrs Justa alias Cindy

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Well as we adjust to Riley back from 2 weeks at doggie boot camp, we are working with her a couple times a day to keep all the commands she learned fresh in her mind.

Riley is the sweetest dog you could ever imagine, but her fright in being left alone was too much to comprehend. Our vet examined her and prescribed doggie anti—anxiety/ anti OCD meds. They totally zonked her out. The vet suggested we give her these meds AND work with a trainer. They recommended the “Dog Whisperer” of the east. So we took her up there and she was there for 2 whole weeks. Dang we missed her like crazy, but hopefully it would help to find ways to calm her separation anxiety.

The above photo is Riley in her place. That is part of her workings, and the goal is that even when we are not doing her 15-20 minute working—it is where she will go when told to, and not leave till we release her. 100_0608

As we have been working her she has trouble with “down”.. So Mark and I decided to watch the DVD the trainer sent home with us, showing us Riley working with Neil the trainer. As soon as the DVD goes in, she stops… and sits in front of us and watches the DVD. She intently sits there, and actually sat thru 5 showings of it. Than I tried “down” and she did it !. It really is funny, she relates to this video.

Now for being left home… we had to d/c the big open crate and go back to the solid crate.We were afraid she was going to crack all her teeth out in her panic mode… Rileys bent crate and having the boys over 11-17-12 003

Rileys bent crate and having the boys over 11-17-12 002She is still not a fan of being left home… Neil suggested we try an electric training collar . So  she now uses an electric collar on a low setting. See her anxiety causes her to pant, than she barks, her barks increase her anxiety till she is totally out of control. This zapper settles her down a bit because if she barks she gets a little trickle of electricity. It does work.

We  do see a difference in Riley since she went. She is less clingy to us. Neil explained that she was feeling like she was in charge of us, so when we moved to a different room..she came with us. If we left or crated her..she felt like she could not protect us. As I type this, she is by herself in the kitchen snoozing. She would not have done that before.

We have also gotten her accepted in a Doggie Daycare and plan to have her spend a day or 2 a week there for 4-8 hrs. She can socialize, and it gives her less time she would need to be crated. The day care said she was VERY GOOD>>>> (HA she came home exhausted !!!)

So we are being trained to be the ones in charge… and she is learning to be a dog.

I hope the progress continues… and next week we have to return to the trainer to show how well we and she are doing with the commands and behavior. Geesie.. I hope we pass!!.

We are off to shop for the last few things… I hope you are all having a good holiday season.

Be safe.. be careful..and never wait till tomorrow to tell someone you love them… tell them now..and never ever stop!!!.

Love to all Mrs Justa alias Cindy

The Holiday time seems different each year.

Some things always fill my heart with smiles. Like going around and looking at peoples decorations.

100_6830_editedThis house has been amazing for the last few years. I can not wait to go check it out again.

This was in 2010 …………………….

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The year I took this ( Dec 2011) , as we were driving by… we stopped and came across this sign.

 

 

 

someone had stolen one of their inflatable yard ornaments..but these people did not lose faith though. 100_0125Someone else came and replaced it for them. They have a can to put non perishables in for a local food pantry. They are people who give to others they do not know by decorating and collecting.

As a grandparent—it is warming for me to know our kids are with their kids opening gifts in the morning and spending those special times together. I always felt Christmas morning was a private time, a personal time for the parents and their children or for the couple with their life. My mom never demanded Mark and I be at her house in the morning with the kids… we gathered together on Christmas eve…

100_0125Christmas is a time to be thankful for those you share your day to day life with. Over the years I have watched as friends have gone through the turmoil of trying to balance between grandparent houses..Worrying about whose house you have to be at, or who you have to plan on entertaining on Christmas morn. I swore I would never be that demanding parent/grandparent.. And I do not think I have been—nor will I ever be.

Now we are older… our kids are grown and have kids of their own..Christmas is a different kind of special. It still has it’s same meaning… but it is Mark and I… we have no alarm clock… we have a quiet breakfast… sip on our hot beverage of tea or coffee..and just enjoy the time of being. I am so thankful we had all the years of having our kids excitement flow over a quick breakfast but I do not feel cheated now..life is chapters in our books of life. Nothing stays the same. Oh there are constants in life… like watching ITs A Wonderful Life…and Decorating for Christmas… and sending cards…baking special cookies, making special gifts….and I totally love the happiness I feel around –it is a time a solitude, a time of appreciating what we have—no matter how much or little.

I no longer feel pressured by buying things..we do it gradually..Mark and I actually go out together and chose a gift or 2 for ourselves..and wrap it and than we open it on Christmas morning. One year we did it way before Christmas..and when we went to open them.. we forgot what we bought ourselves!.

I love Christmas carols 100_6755when it is closer to Christmas… I love church and the amazing scripture of Mary and Joseph and Jesus. I just can not begin to explain how much I love the season. I feel so blessed to be able to live in a country where people can decorate, where people can freely go from neighborhood to neighborhood enjoying the lights and decorations. I love that we have had Christmas magic when we were children, when we had children and now with grandchildren.

It is truly a special time of the year for me.

I hope you can go look at decoration where you live..and hope you feel the magic of the season….. My love to all.. Mrs Justa alias Cindy.

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