Family reunions… they are neat to have. Our family is pretty large, and unfortunately not many could attend, but those who did, I am thankful for the time with them. It was the first year my oldest brother Don and his wife Sally could not attend. That was weird. They are the rock for the reunion. Sally loves to plan it and organize it, and that component was missing this time around. Don LOVES the kids… and the kids who are now adults with kids of their own. They are very wise and giving of themselves people, they are real people..not pretend. They were missed.

It is strange but even family who live within a 20 mile radius of each other here in the Syracuse area—we do not spend nearly enough time together, so it was good to have quality time with them too. I felt bad for my nephew—who has 4 siblings, and none were there. His mom and step dad were there though and his kids got to spend time with their grandparents.

My brother, his wife, Mark and me, our new dog Riley Regan, my sister and her 2 kids , my nephew , his wife and 2 kids, and another sister and her husband were there. It was a hot humid few days. A few of us had campers with AC- and that was great for Riley, and the grandkids and their parents…—Riley  was not feeling 100%, so the cooler temps were good for her too. . Our nights were more comfortable than they had been in years passed when we had a pop up without AC, and when we were tenting. 100_0446

100_0447I was over at Jeff and Amanda’s one night as the fire flies were darting back and forth. Brandon was trying to figure out what they were. So Jeff caught one in his hands and let Brandon peak inside and see the fly light up… it was magical, it was heart warming , it was wonderful to see the wonder and excitement in Brandon’s face..and the love in Jeff’s face as he was explaining to Jeff what these lights were.

This is living..this is what life is about. Not the DVDs, or the Nike at nite channels.. no nature, parents, kids, spending time with one another ant not I phones, computers, I pads. 100_0435

Taking the nap under the tree, 100_0473

playing with bubbles. 100_0429



playing cards at a picnic table







having the grandkids help walk the dog…



100_0464Having a grand child help with the dishes….



100_0480100_0462Just enjoying each moment. Now it will be another year before we all come together.

That is a long time. We are hoping all can come next year… each person not there was missed terribly.

I am thankful we were able to share the 5 days though with all who could come for all or part of it.

I love my family… I love my husband who came into my family through marriage and shares in this annual event ! I feel truly blessed.

Love to all.. Mrs Justa alias, Cindy


We had some friendshelping put the sailboat in the Lake 003 that needed some help we went to help them. They have a 28 foot sailboat and needed someone to tow it to Skaneateles Lake. They had it on the trailer, and basically ready to hook to and tow.. we have a pick up truck… so together we could make it happen….. and after today I gotta tell you I admire them..and do not quite understand the fact that people like having sailboats.

helping put the sailboat in the Lake 008Dang the amount of work they had to do once we arrived at the lake—well it was pretty amazing. They are flitting here and there, attaching their motor, untangling ropes, attaching pulleys and wenches… me and Mark basically stayed out of their way for the most part. I took some photos… and watched…thinking to myself—that what they were doing was not even the slightest bit appealing to me.

They probably think the same thing about camping..but gee. to me… I prepare the food—get the fridge running a day before we go… pack clothes, plan a menu… and Mark and I take off. He drives the pick up… we work together to set it up…but setting up does not involve cranking up a mast and untangling ropes and driving into a lake edge, ..than they have to hook up a dingy to their boat..and go out in the lake..anchor it..and row the dingy back and forth to shore. I am not a lazy  person but THAT is too much like work to relax…

These peoplehelping put the sailboat in the Lake 005 ( other sail boat owners)  were coming up to me and asking me about the it was mine… and I kept apologizing and directing them to the folks who own it.. It was funny.. I would say I was not a real boat fan..and you would have thought I had just thrown up in front of them… than when I said  …I am a camper… well.. they could not understand my joy of camping much more than I could grasp the joy of getting a sailboat in the water.

We had a friend about 23 years ago, who had a sailboat in Sodus NY..He  insisted we spend a weekend with him.. Now he loved to sail, he had a belly laugh that was contagious, and his voice was kinda like MR Rogers…there was one problem… he could not see from his one eye, and the other was pretty vision impaired. So imagine our experience as he sailed us around. He had no depth perception… and for some harebrained reason he thought a venture out of Sodus Bay and into Lake Ontario was a good idea. Mark and I never sailed a day in our lives…and here we are with  our next to blind captain who had to literally man the whole boat..every few minutes would tell us to duck …he had to Jibe as we left the bay..and to top it off..there was a fog so dense that my job became holding a can and blowing the hand held fog/air horn. He said that was so other boats knew we were there… YIKES>>>The most scenery there was ..was the tip of our nose ..and I was scared to death, I have not been a smaller than cruise ship boat person for I had a boating incident where I thought I was going to drown on the bottom of the lake… so I am not fond of boats on a good day…

5-19-2012 east coast with the boys for the day 063Somehow we made it… and we never went out with him again…. and if it is not a boat that can hold at least a few hundred people…well it is not a boat to find ME on…golly gee… in a dingy… a canoe,, a row boat… and kayak…. whoa no!!!!!! I would totally freak out… my subconscious would take me to a panic place that would not be pretty..I can guarantee everyone on the boat would feel like they had a religious experience after listening to be chant the “Lord’s Prayer “ for the entire trip….

Nope… keep me on solid ground, and than .. I am a happy camper !

Love to all, Mrs justa… alias Cindy

100_0408The stay-ca-tion has dwindled down to just a few hours left. We decided  to end it with where we started—kind of…

Off to Oswego we went tonight. The sun set was masked by the clouds….but it was nice all the same.

The water was still, the clouds were asking as a cover for the sun, and amazingly no one was in Oswego… ( well there were some people but not a lot)

We went to the opposite side of the river and caught a shot of the restaurant where it all began… 100_0404

Did not even look like many people were up there…

See a “stay-ca-tion” means you avoid the trying to get all the stuff put away, laundry done and grocery shopping before the next next of work stops… (yeah baby that is VERY nice) and…

you never really get super tired….cuz you are not out there fighting the vacationers for the spot on the highway…

5-27-12 003I do not feel we were cheated a 3 day weekend… not at all. Yesterday we went to Skanealeles NY- sat by the lake there …

We were entertained by a variety of Duck families.

It really was funny to watch the different families float by.


An as we sat there, we had brought some pepperoni, cheese and crackers, some apples and Ice Tea… and we left any worries, cares of challenges at home. would think..what kind of challenges could there be..well anyone who has followed us for a while must have a hint that there are challenges at times.

Our latest…. and this one is GROSS>>>

something has died in our floor….have no idea what it was..but I can assure you what ever it was—it is not with us any longer… Nope only it’s stench lives now…

What we do the passing took place under our bathroom sink area…. and after CAREFULLY emptying the bathroom vanity………. I went in there—with the grubbiest clothes I could find…( these are the sweats I have worn to paint, to caulk, to garden, to weed, to great stuff, to apply adhesives..I wash them and save them for grubby times…) see I was half expecting to find the remains of a chipmunk, or mouse, or something….I had a bucket with chlorine and water, a garbage bag, paper towels and rags…and a bunch of prayers that if I did find something that I would be able to handle it and not be so skeeved out that I would take off in the opposite direction. As I slowly lowered my body to the floor..I was thinking about my post the other night about the “Road kill Collector” and thinking that God has a sense of humor—I make a comment about a profession—and the next day our house smells like road kill.

Well… the odor is under the sink..yes siree—that is where it is coming from… but fortunately in an unfortunate way—I found nothing that is responsible for the odor…

I looked in the crawl space under the house…. nothing… so whatever it was—- it was between the crawl space and out floor….

We really can not have our whole house ripped apart to find some dead whatever…. so I went on line and ask my new best intelligent friend ( Google) –what to do if your have dead animal smell in your house…. Do you know there are thousands of articles on this subject !!!. Basically— give it 7-10 weeks…I am hoping this whatever is under our floor- but above our crawl space… was small—like a mole, or a field mouse, the articles  I read said the smaller—the less time of stench.. It is not too bad to night.. the rags seemed to help keep the air out of the house…

100_0403So that is our stay-ca-tion…We had a nice time together—I enjoyed church Sunday, we had fun with our friends Sat Am…. we got to visit with Jeff and Amanda and the kids, we got to spend peaceful time in areas around us…and I do not think we ever felt rushed.. and to wrap it all up…




We broke all rules, we got a really rich ice cream treat at Cold Stone Creamery…

Now it is times to focus on work, focus on life and come back to the reality world…

No sleeping in… nope time to start being responsible again.

I hope you had a nice weekend, and I hope you are home—safe and sound…. Love to all, Mrs Justa alias Cindy

I know I have mentioned before Africam. Well for those of you who did not remember, or those of you who never heard of it, this is my relief after a long day. I get in my jammies, sit back with a cool drink of water or a hot tea, and for a while I go to the jungles of Africa.

Most of the time it is noisy, crickets in the background, birds cackling, maybe an occasional elephant, rhino, or creature I am unsure of. But the other night it was TOTALLY cool. I am here, africam 1-24-2012 010on my office chair, watching giraffes in the wild.

I mean this was totally making my day ,taking me away from the  jungles of ugliness ( my day that had just been!!) and let me  drift away. Mark thinks it is funny how I get mesmerized in the safari from my office chair!

How cool are these photos!

I took videos, man you would think I was there. I was laughing and loving it…I was like a tourist in a bathrobe and fuzzy slippers.

There were mama and papa giraffes and baby ones.

Slurping water, and eating trees. They have to bend their nimble appearing legs in half almost to get a drink.

africam 1-24-2012 018



And here…

I felt like they were watching me watch them…and I got the bonus of Zebras coming in for a viewing.

Now tell me this is not totally cool

africam 1-24-2012 008

Okay… so some may think I am simple minded… but I am thinking I am being frugal.I went on one site and a safari can run $500 to $10,000+ (excluding airfare). Now for  me ( and Mark when he dares to join in the fun) —it costs nothing more than an extra cup of coffee or tea.

HA—I am thinking if I was going to go on a safari—I would not want to go with the cheaper one. That is quite a difference between the low and the high price! I can assure you I would not be going for the 500.00 one.
This is a photo of the sleeping arrangements on the LOW budget one…(They supply the tent but YOU supply your own sleeping bag..)

500.00 safari

Are You Kidding ME!!!!

Man can you imagine having some big ass elephant come and check you out… or a lion..



Nope… this does not sound appealing! In the one ad it said the lower cost was for the daring… adventure goers. It describes the sleeping as your tent “in the bush”… and you have “bucket showers and long drop latrines”…drop latrine HA HA… it is more than daring! You gotta be nuts… that does not even sound like something I would go on for free!! and the transportation for “game viewing”  is in 6 passenger mini vans.

I went on line to see what the heck a “drop latrine” is… here ya go… >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>             HA  HA… could you imagine thinking you found a great deal on a Safari,picturing at least a moderate accommodating tour and get off the plane to find you have a 2 man tent, a mini van..and a “drop latrine” .

I wonder how they named that,. and who the heck hangs onto you as you try to hang your butt over the edge…

Damaraland_003Now the mid expensive ones have a little more… land rovers transportation, and you stay in a “lodge”

Now this looks a little more appealing…I do not think I would be as nervous of becoming a bedtime snack in this.

I got these last 3 photos from a web wite for reserving a African Safari…

SOOO.. back to this warm home, ice storm outside, jammies on… electric mattress pad warming up my side of the bed… and with a click of the button..I will get my jungle fix from New York… If it gets boring..or some of the beasts decide to go after other beasts… I can click off the screen—instead of try to run thru the bush with my tent and sleeping bag in hand—looking for the drop latrine… HEE HEE… I could see me now….

I hope you have a peaceful night.. Love to all Mrs  Justa alias Cindy

Whoa… sometime I get the gut wrenching feeling of missing a person…. but tonight I am missing the ocean. We really had such a nice week at the Outer Banks in April, and I am kinda sickened over the destruction they are dealing with in various areas there.

outer banksBut I long to hear the ocean as it sang us to sleep, and the ocean breeze and the sand. It is such a feeling of awe to me to be at the ocean. Looking forever, and seeing nothing, but feeling the force of the ocean as it flaps onto the shore.

I am glad we did not reserve the same house for next year, as who knows if it is okay after the hurricane.

It would be great though to go back, not just the 2 of us, but doing a rental house again and sharing the costs. The life is surreal in a way. Here we sit in upstate NY, weather ever changing, and everything feels normal. At times I guess it could feel mundane to some, but there…. there was nothing mundane in that week.

The early morning sunrises, the late evening goodbyes of the sun, the coffee on the deck and the strolls on the sea shore..the feeling that there was nothing that mattered really…. life was there… but not stressful.

Yes, it was a wonderful week, one that etched a huge part in my mind, in my heart. I totally loved it.

So tonight, as I get ready to head off to bed… I have comforting memories of a wonderful week…                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        one that we have 4 seniors from high school and a brother and sister-in-law to thank for including us on the journey…


I can say with certainty… it will not be the last time we go to the ocean in a weekly rental… wow… that week lives on in my mind… I think I really fell in love with the experience.

Peace to all, Love always, Mrs Justa… alias Cindy

We just finished a wonderful couple days at Letchworth State Park  with Jeff, Amanda and their two little guys. Letchworth Camping 7-14 and 7-15 2011 089The weather was dry, a tad hot and humid, beautiful blue sky and sights galore to see. It was neat that they actually have parking areas you can drive to to see many of the things and avoid huge walks up and down gorges.

On Thursday night my number one husband ( Walt) came to visit Jeff, see the boys and Amanda… (he is  Jeff’s natural dad) and we did pop down to Jeff’s campsite when he was there. It is a strange feeling to have my first husband there and realize all the time that has passed since we were together. Mark and Walt did get to spend a little time together too, we all get along. But it was strange.

Now fortunately we have a civil relationship, if we did not, a suggestion he had might have been taken differently. We were talking about taking photos on Friday of various things to see and he suggested we wanted some really neat photos that we could go onto a trestle railroad bridge and take pictures of the falls below. I asked if it was a marked path to go on..he said no… I asked if it was a live railroad bridge .. he said yes. Letchworth Camping 7-14 and 7-15 2011 082Well here is what he was referring to…

Now, maybe it is just me… but I really do not think it is wise to walk along a live railroad track, 140 feet above the water, and hope a train does not come through. Now.. maybe it is a wish some ex husbands might have for their x wife… but I am thinking he was being sincere.

In looking at this shot I took though..,. I am Letchworth Camping 7-14 and 7-15 2011 076going back through my mind to see if I had done something really bad that I have forgotten about !. Look at that… there is no railing, no path….

Many may not know my clutz ability in life… but this is not a place meant for me to explore. The photo I would have taken would have been of me with my foot caught in a railroad track board…. or……………., of falling into the water… neither of them are really worth it to me.

I was pretty from below!. On Friday night we got to see Josh, Adrianne and Mackenzie for a cook out dinner.. So it was like a mini family reunion with Marks and My kids and their kids.

Coming back on Saturday was nice because I still have the weekend. We picked up Indi at the kennel, he was seizure free for the 3 days he was there, and we have everything packed in the camper that stays in there, and will get ready for our next venture.

This summer has been incredible!, Not tons of rain, sun shine and more cool nights than not. We have to water the garden, cuz mother nature has kinda let it go…. and we will see how it grows. Hope all is well with you. Love Mrs Justa. alias Cindy


He came home Friday late morning. He is on antibiotics and pain meds twice a day for a few days. He is really a hurting unit, gingerly laying down, difficulty with the stairs, and generally kinda logy. But he is eating and I think is glad to be home.

The vet was really passionate about Indi and we really trust both vets up there. The bill for 2 1/2 days in patient on tons of meds  , including the blood work, x rays, came to $660.00. We did not think that was bad. Heck when we had to take him 1 1/2 yrs ago for pancreatitis to the ER vet in Syracuse it was 1600.00 for 1 1/2 days.

We just are hoping he gets better.

This weekend was the family reunion, where as many of my brothers and sisters and their families and their family families all gather for camping. We had a site reserved.. but it would have bee pretty selfish of us to disregard Indi’s pain and haul him 4 hrs away camping. He would have endured the pain, but it would have been wrong. The vet actually recommended keeping him in low key mode for 10 days.

So this is the first family reunion I have missed in 40 years !!. But we had to…

I am off, we have to do a couple things and Indi needs close watch. Love to all, and thanks for your prayers… CIndy alias Mrs justa…

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