Wednesday, November 8, 2017

UP TO MY NECK



Hello, my friends!  And I mean that from the bottom of my heart.  Your words of support, and promises of prayers for my furry love, Milo, had me in awe every morning when I would open up my blog to read comments. I could never ask for more at this time in my life.  In my last long and rambling post, as per usual, you guys weighed in and supported me on my eye issue, as well as my devastation in getting the diagnosis for Milo.  And you also were so thoughtful in giving Miss Madelyn birthday wishes.  Who could ask for more?  I'm so grateful. 

My spirits have been lifted as I see Milo making progress--well, not progress, but not getting ill since his first chemotherapy.  He's been acting like an old man a bit more, he frequently stares at walls, lies down to sleep in odd places, and sits and stares at me for minutes on end.  Nothing to be troubled about, just not his normal self.   Still, I'm so happy to have him.

He takes Prednisone, and I was told this could make him more thirsty and needing to urinate more.  He had a few accidents, which seemed totally uncontrollable.  His legs would go weak and he would pretty much lose it, thankfully on the wood floor and not an area rug.  And so much...a huge puddle.  He looks ashamed and I try to soothe him.  He also frequently gives me his 'look', almost hourly in the evening, which means he has to go.  As you know, we spotted a coyote a few yards from our house not long ago (yep, here in the city), so I go out in the backyard with him with the floodlights on.  That fear of a wild animal, and being out late at night is not so great.  But I do it, I'm not letting him out alone, nor suffer with a full bladder.  Please know, I do have a broom on the back porch for defense.    

Well, I've rambled on long enough here.  I think things are going well.  As well as can be.  As well as I can ask for.  



When I feel like my life is spiraling out of control, I tend to cry, sulk, and sleep a lot.  Last week I pulled myself up by the bootstraps and decided I needed to start living and working on my own life.  I have been unorganized, undisciplined, and fretting over my writing deadlines. My fridge never seems to be stocked up, the laundry piles up until I'm out of my favorite, stretched out yoga pants, and the house can use a good cleaning.  

If you've been around awhile, you might often hear me say, "I'm going back to the gym."  Well, it's been 2 years and I haven't been back.  And this isn't a fairy tale ending, I haven't signed back up yet...but I'm determined.  




If you've been around awhile, you might have heard me often say, "I'm going back to the gym."  Well, it's been 2 years and I haven't been back.  And this isn't a fairy tale ending, I haven't signed back up.  But I'm determined to do it when I can fully commit.  

One thing I was really failing at was eating well.  Eating too much bread, pasta, even rice and grains, and while the latter 2 are healthy, the carbs are a no no for me.  I was wallowing in a lot of self pity, and also being lazy about preparing and cooking the right foods.  

I really enjoy Pinterest, and my favorite Pins are recipes.  My boards are mostly those, yet I rarely follow through on making anything from these boards.  

I buckled down, chose a few healthy recipes, wrote down the items I didn't have, and did my grocery shopping.  Hooray, I followed through on everything!  Some meals didn't turn out quite as good as I thought, but you learn.  I hope I can encourage some of you to do this as well.  I loved the challenge and loved accomplishing my goal.  Unlike the gym, I'm not investing money only to feel guilty and worthless if I fail.  But I will continue to push myself on that end.


I happened to be at Target last week looking for a 2018 planner.  I couldn't live without one, and I'm already scribbling things into the notes section of the December one I have.  Target always has some cool journals, notebooks, tablets, calendars, and planners.  I came across this and thought it was so pretty.  I thought it was just a food journal.  I had a little one a few years ago that I found at Barnes & Noble.  I checked there, and even on Amazon, and I hadn't found one.  It really helped me keep track of my meals, how far apart they were, when it seemed I snacked the most in a day...it was SO helpful.  

This is a really great journal.  It's not just a food diary, it's an uplifting guide to help you with your feelings about food, i.e., are you an emotional eater?  Do you snack out of boredom?  There are chapters that focus on how you feel good about yourself, lists of 'good for you foods', and at the end, a great diary for your daily meals to help you understand your eating patterns.

I will not hold back here, I make a regular attempt to post only pictures of myself that flatter.  I have a huge weight loss goal of about forty pounds.  That's a hefty amount my body doesn't need, and a real sign of neglect, lack of discipline, and unwillingness to commit to a healthy way of life.  I've only made half hearted attempts.  

I don't know if any of this menu planning or using a food journal will help.  I have to approach going to the gym as a goal to feel better, be healthy, and maybe one day, wear clothes that I can look good in.  Whoa- confession time!


  

As if I'm not challenging myself enough, or setting the bar too high, I decided to take on the endeavor of making tamales.  They look simple, but man, I was wrong.  The Husband is always raving about the ones he gets from a little Mexican place on his way home from work.  I really enjoy them, too, and I've wanted to take on some different types of regional cooking.  Okay, maybe I was jealous he was so loving something I didn't make myself.  ;-D

Oh, wow. I had no idea what I was getting into.  In the Latino culture, making tamales is very much a way to celebrate Christmas; a tradition that involves the women in the family working together; making dozens of tamales, chatting, enjoying the company, and later, sharing their hard work in gift giving.  

I obviously didn't get the part about doing this with others.  So far I have probably spent about fifteen hours shopping, cooking the meats (I'm making chicken and pork tamales), and making the sauces.  As of yet, I have not made the masa, which will hold everything together in the corn husks.  And then I have to steam them.  My recipes, and I combined a few to get what I felt was just right, will make about eighty tamales.  That's not unusual, as you want to gift your family and friends with about 2-3 per person.  I know, that's a lot, and I wish I had a hub of women to help me.  So far my girls, and The Husband, think I'm crazy.  I'm sorry-I like a challenge.  It keeps me busy and my mind off not so good things.



The Addams Family home, circa 2017

I promised you pics of the before and after of the landscaping, and improvements on our house.  Please don't cringe-I'm almost embarrassed to show you this.  These are permits in the window, not evacuation notices.  Also, the sidewalk had already been torn up.  The lawn was just terrible, and covered with the dust of the concrete work, as were the old, overgrown bushes, some had already been removed to make room for the porch.  Still, the ivy hadn't been trimmed all summer, and everything was just sad.  Remember, I was at the lake a good part of the summer and really turned my back on this house, I didn't even plant flowers or pots.  

I saw a porch as I was walking Madelyn in our neighborhood, I fell in love.  Two levels, and no ugly railings.  I found a mason who did a tremendous job on a porch for my friend, Snow.  He came, loved the design I chose and expanded the idea of using a replication of the limestone which you can see under the bay window to the right of the porch.  He did the driveway as well, which was in sad shape from the roots of the old maple we had cut down (see my last post).  And finally we had a new sidewalk done with pavers by another company, and new bushes and plants by a garden/landscape company.



The after.  Voila!  I think the biggest difference (and a decision I didn't want to face), was removing all of the ivy that wrapped around the house.  Even when trimmed, it looked unkempt, hid the pretty brick, and was causing damage by actually creeping inside the windows and damaging our gutters.  Lesson learned.

I had the shutters and trim painted a mossy green/gray, it's called Incognito by Behr from Home Depot.  I'm in love with it.  

Finally, the planting of the bushes and plants, as well as a good reseeding of the lawn, was done by a local company by the name of Garden Keepers.  It's owned by a terrific woman named Paula (Yay for women entrepreneurs!).  She came and took an educated look, talked to me about plant options; spacing, size, color, sunlight requirements, and answered just about any question I had.  

She was spot on.  My biggest request was that she didn't use very young bushes that would take a long time to grow and mature-I didn't want to look like a new construction landscape.  




We couldn't be happier.  In these pics we hadn't yet gotten new lights for the porch and garage.  The Husband picked copper lanterns with glass that exposes the old fashioned light bulbs.  We will also have the border in front of the bushes lined with 2 layers of flagstone, it just wasn't available in quantity so late in the season.

 My house is small, but it does extend back twice as far as it is wide.  Pretty much a typical small city lot.  Can you see the limestone on the sides of the porch?  That mason was able to match it to the stone under the bay window going back seventy years when the house was built.  What a professional.

So that's it, another post chock full of ramblings.  I have some writing to do for the papers, but I hope to get back soon.  And those tamales...what did I get into????

Jane x

53 comments:

Tammy@T's Daily Treasures said...

Poor Milo. I'm sure he just doesn't understand what is going on. My dog Scooter was put on prednisone because of his dry skin condition. That happened after I came to Kuwait and had left him with my friend in Dallas. She said he gained weight and it made him lethargic, but he did live to be 15 years old so I guess it helped him otherwise. I totally changed my eating habits nearly 12 years ago, lost 30 pounds. Since then, I gave up meat and then also gave up dairy and honestly have never felt better. Food is fuel for our bodies and I always remember that when I eat something. Being plant based sure makes it easy to maintain. I like meals that are quick and easy, made in under 30 minutes so tamales would definitely not be on the menu. :) Good luck!

Silver Willow said...

Hi! I'm so sorry to hear about Milo; that must be pure torture to go through. I have 2 elderly dogs (and one in mid-life.)....I know it will be soon for me too. Hugs to you for that. Oh heck, just hugs in general. It's a stressful time. :)

Beatrice Euphemie said...

The house looks wonderful, Jane - quite a transformation! Love all the exposed brickwork and how pretty and neat everything is. I grew ivy on my house once, too. It looks pretty, but causes so much damage. My home insurance wouldn't renew until we cut it all down. So hard to deal with our aging fur-babies. Every day is bittersweet. I hear you on getting back into healthy eating habits and getting in shape. I have really slacked off lately. It takes a certain mind-set and time to work into it. I like the idea of the journal - I think I'll try that. I am laughing right now about the tamale adventures. I'm sure they are going to be delicious! Sounds like you are going to have enough to last until you get the urge to make them again! Give Milo an extra hug from me and a hug to you, too. Always love stopping by :) xx Karen

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coffeeontheporchwithme said...

I really like the new colour of your shutters! You've taken on a lot with the new porch, walkway, landscaping. Removing the ivy was a good idea and it looks good, too. I've never made tamales. They sound quite involved! -Jenn

A Quiet Corner said...

I hardly know where to begin, Jane. The changes in landscaping were great decisions. Now, the only thing I can say about 80 tamales is YIKES! However, sometimes keeping busy isn't good thing. It depends on what's keeping me "busy." To me, my gym regimen is a must as I really do see the results because, Like you, I was eating far too many bad carbs so I made a conscientious effort to reduce (not eliminate) them. I have and now those fashionable leggings look pretty good on me. Intentionally saving my thoughts about Milo for last, you are doing the right thing enjoying him when you can. I know you won't let him suffer as no one with aa heart as big as yours could. A dear friend's pooch just completed successful chemo treatment so remain hopeful! "air hugs & smiles"...:)JP

Kathy Moreland said...

Hope Milo is feeling better, and you, as well. I would never tackle tamales! We're very meat and potatoes around here. That's what my husband who drove a truck for Air Products & Chemicals for over 40 years prefers, so that's how it is here. We do spaghetti, pork roasts, and lots of variety, but he will only occasionally want Mexican food, then we go to a place called Casa Barachi. It's really good, and about 5 minutes away.

I love the look of your home. The landscaping looks fabulous, and the trim and shutter color is perfect. You did a good job choosing. And that walkway........my daughter wants one similar to yours.

My grandson and his wife are coming for Thanksgiving, and I think we will go down there shortly after Christmas for about 4 days (NOLA). I'd love to visit the church where he is Executive Pastor and Worship Leader, and their apartment. The church provides them an apartment free of charge which is an amazing perk!!

I'm ready for a trip to the Lake, but Travis doesn't want to go right now, so I'll wait. I've bought a cabinet to use for a pantry and am anxious to get it assembled and in place. I haven't been down since the end of July when I was so sick.

Hope you have a happy and restful weekend doing whatever makes you happy! Take care, my friend!!

Vicki @ lifeinmyemptynest said...

Really nice freshening up of your pretty house. I just love the walkway - it's so welcoming, just like you :-)

Katie Clooney said...

Hi Jane... your house looks fabulous. I love all the changes and the new paint on the shutters is gorgeous. I hope poor sweet Milo feels better soon.

Theresa said...

I will be cheering Milo on and praying too! You and I are in the same boat! I just can't seem to get motivated to get myself moving! I desperately need to get exercise and be the best me I can be! Let's do this together:) Sending HUGS and PRAYERS your way! OH and the transformation of your house is AMAZING!

Marty@A Stroll Thru Life said...

The house looks fabulous. What a gorgeous transformation. Praying for Milo too.

Penny from Enjoying The Simple Things said...

Your house and landscaping look great Jane!

Kim said...

Glad to hear that Milo is doing ok. The house looks fabulous and I too cannot stop eating the carbs. It's terrible. I need to get a journal and write it all down...and then go to the gym. Maybe a record will help me to see exactly what I'm eating. I peeked at your sidebar and saw Demi Lovato. I have a huge fan over here and lately I have been putting her new album on when she's not home. Good music! Few good Jane. xoxo

Helen said...

Dear Jane,
Reading the comment you left on my blog reminded me of how absent I've been from reading friends' blogs, leaving comments. I will go back to older posts you have shared for a good old "catch up!" Your home is beautiful, the upgrades perfection. I could happily live in it. I am so sorry you are going through this painful time with Milo, my daughter's Maltese is thirteen and slowing down. Pets occupy a very special place in our lives, in our hearts. Please try not putting so much pressure on yourself regarding diet, exercise, etc. In July 2016 I was diagnosed with Diabetes Type2 ~ years of too many sweets, unhealthy carbs, not enough exercise. I made a promise to myself that day I would manage the disease with a low carb, moderate protein, high healthy fat way of eating and it has worked! Down 41 pounds, with little effort/no starving, no diabetic meds. I estimate I've walked (fast) over 850 miles since then! Would be happy to share more of the journey if you are interested. So, be kind to yourself.
Love,
Helen

ann said...

Hi Jane. I have been MIA for a while--a long blog break. I have thought of you over the those weeks, and it seems that life has taken some twists and turns. I can certainly relate to your eye problem; while I do not suffer from dry eyes, I did have a scratched cornea after I had my cataract removed. I woke up the next morning with excruciating pain in the patched eye. When the doctor removed the bandage, he had discovered that a lower eye lash had been taped in place allowing it to scratch the cornea. So painful. He gave me Tylenol with codeine and told me to rest for the day. Boy did I rest. Then driving to work to one morning I saw like oil bubbles in my right eye along with a what appeared to be a crescent moon. I called the eye doctor and he said that I had tear in the retina, not a detachment, but a tear. He zapped it right there in office with his magical laser beam and as he said "sewed" it back together. He has been a wonderful doctor and is retiring and I am sad for that. I hope your eye has healed and that you don't have anymore problems.

And I feel so badly about your dog. Poor thing. He is in kind, loving care and you will give him the best of care as he fights his battle. We too lost a dear golden retriever to cancer, and it is a very sad, heart breaking story that I won't share now. It is too sad and now is not the time, but we have all been there and that journey is a hard one, nursing our little fur babies.

Food. Oh what a battle it wages with us, all the way from what to eat, what not to eat, and how to prepare it. What a chore and the older I get the less interested in cooking I become. I have struggled with weight for all of my life and while I am not as slim as I would like to be--not slim at all--I have had weight loss success with Weight Watchers. I have been going since 2014 and have missed very few meetings. Not only have I learned about food and nutrition and why I have such a dysfunctional relationship with it, but I have made some good friends, which helps.

Love new the landscape. Love your classic home. I enjoy your interior photos, too. You have a lovely home, warm home.I loved the birthday party too, especially the time capsule. I am going to suggest that to my daughters. The granddaughters have summer birthdays with the last one in October--not summer, but that round of birthdays is over and the second round with the boys will begin after the first of the year. A time capsule is a really fun idea. A great party theme: What is your future! And more perfect with a Mexican fiesta.

We all go through crummy periods, usually triggered by a life event. The trick is to try to figure a way out the blue funk. Cooking tomalleys would certainly be a challenge and not for the faint of heart. Even the good Mexican cooks who I know, buy theirs! My daughter's mil who is Mexican buys hers, but it is more the challenge that you have given yourself. Then wrap your arms around those beautiful grandchildren that you have. Keep blogging. Keep writing. Keep smiling. Cook. Clean. Read. Walk. Give me a call or one of your positive, supportive friends or family. Now I need tackle my day. I hope yours is great.

Linda said...

I’ve been catching up with you this morning! So much good is happening at your place and I’m sure that encourages you with all the trauma you’ve been through lately with your eye and Milo. I’ve never thought about making homemade tamales! My sister, Nita, works in the office of a food service company and she’s the one who orders and brings tamales to get togethers. Are you preparing yours to save for Christmas? Wishing all the best for you, Jane, and for your Milo, too......

CJ said...

Dear Milo, I'm glad he has you to look after him so well. I know how you value every day with him. I struggle with overwhelm too when things are difficult. You have a lot on, so be kind to yourself. Milo is a priority at the moment, everything else will take second place, and try hard not to worry about it all. Your house is looking absolutely gorgeous, you've made a beautiful job of it. Well done on the cooking. I've been in a cookery slump lately, although I have tried one or two new things. It's good when they turn out well and are popular. Nothing exciting tonight though I'm afraid, it's been a bit of a long day (sick child). Look after yourself my friend, and try not to let the amount of Things To Be Done overwhelm you. (I should take my own advice I think!) Sending you a cyber hug. CJ xx

Brenda Pruitt said...

I missed what's going on with Milo. I'm so sorry. I know you're doing everything you can and we pet lovers applaud you for being such a great mommy! Your house looks completely different now. Love that path up to it!
Brenda

Susie said...

Blondie girl, You have had a lot going on. I do hope Milo is doing well. Our pets break our hearts...just like children when they are sick. I need to lose some weight too honey. I sometimes hate how I look. I feel strong and healthy, but I need to trim down. I was starving after my dental appointment this Monday. But don't think I lost an ounce even. LOL.
You house is absolutely charming. I thought it was cute before, but the after is amazing. Love the walkway. :):) Blessings to , xoxo, Susie

Melanie said...

Oh, Milo...poor, sweet pup. It's so hard to see our fur babies aging and ailing. He reminds me a lot of my 18-year old cat, Zippo. He does the staring thing too and also meows very loudly, takes a long time to eat, sleeps a lot, etc. Like Milo, he's also on Prednisone (for the extreme pressure in his eye and head from glaucoma) - but the eye vet had him on it every day and it caused an ulcer on his cornea. So now he's only on the Pred 3 days/week. Yes, it also makes dogs pee a lot. I hate that darn med - it causes so many bad side effects - but what are we supposed to do?

Your house re-do is amazing! I can't believe the difference. I especially love the brick walkway up to your house. And the removal of the ivy really opened up the look of the house, too. Great job by all involved.

Scribbler said...

I love the spruce-ups on your house! Tamales are indeed a project, and you are a superstar for even trying. You do so much that I am astounded that you would even want to tackle them.

I hope your physical annoyances are better and that Milo the pooch is in no pain.

Bluebird49 said...

I'm so sorry about Milo's health. You know how depressing it is for us to even think them not being with us. We lost Babycat in August, and still, I expect her to jump up in my lap and be at the front door when we've been out. I would swear to you that I've seen shadows of her still!
I could have been the one writing about gaining weight and eating unhealthily! I can't seem to get anything done since the PE and multiple falls in the past two years. I'm not sure where this year has gone. So, I'm with you, dear Jane---unhappily.

I do love the renovations and landscaping. Things will get better, Jane. Just love yourself at least as much as we love you!
xo's, Trudy

Stacey said...

Love the work you've done on your exterior! How wonderful to find the right people for the job. You just never know!

Still thinking about little Milo and you too.

Don't be too hard on yourself with the diet business. Wrong time of year to fret about that. Just keep your food journal and plan good meals. You'll do fine.

We make tamales every two or three years with some friends of ours. It's a fun tradition. :)

Junkchiccottage said...

Glad to hear Milo is a little better and doing ok with the chemo. The tamales sound yummy. I too am a carb eater and have to get better with that. I would rather eat carbs than protein and that is my downfall. I too am looking to go back to the gym but being realistic I will wait until after the holidays. Sounds like you are on a good start to eating better. One step at a time. Have a great new week.
xoxo
Kris

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

Good for you for taking charge of your health. I promise myself that I will do that but it is always mañana.

Your house looks lovely. I know it is a lot of work but it is worth it when the result is that good.

Karen Ann said...


DO not beat yourself up for not doing everything "just right" - congratulate yourself for taking the initiative to begin again - each new day is a fresh start on our goals. I'm an emotional eater too, and Lord knows there are 1,000 reasons to be emotional lately. I am currently 25 lbs overweight - and for my 5'4 frame, that's a lot of extra weight. I actually have a full gym right outside in our garage - and it's heated! I have no excuse - but I'm just not a gym rat. So.. I've been walking the dogs daily - it's something I enjoy doing and I do it even when I'm not feeling great - and I do yoga in my living room (Kate Potter DVD - real easy for us non-bendy people) at least three or four times a week. I've cut down on eating crap, and it's helping. One foot in front of the other, that's all you have to do. Cut yourself some slack, you're a good person with good intentions always. Just make the decision and stick with it to take better care of you. You can do it.

Your home is lovely! And smaller is better - who wants to ramble around a big house especially after the kids have moved on to their adult lives??... I like your new landscape and choices.

Lynne said...

Oh my girl . . .
Yes Indeed . . .
Up To Your Neck

Eye . . . scary trauma, hope you are feeling better.

Happy Milo is easing into his chemo days . . .
There is a med for dogs with incontinance
Our Snickers is on it . . ..

Diet and exercise and foods and diet and cooking and gym days . . .
Finding ways to not add more and remove forty extras . . .
Journaling, food plans, scheduling . . .

Writing assignments for the paper . . .
Days with Maddie . . .
Cottage home
City home

Sweet facial landscape changes . . .
You have dressed up City Home beautifully . . .
Love it!

Wishing you calmer quieter days
I might make it the first journal entry . . .

Caring about you Jane . . .

podso said...

What a beautiful transformation! I do love it without the ivy because the brick is so pretty. You made some good decision. Must give you such pleasure when you pull in your driveway now. The tamale cooking--amazing. And best wishes for Milo.

Rita C. said...

Wow, wow, WOW, Jane! Your house had a fantastic transformation, and you should be proud as a peacock for your project management! Wow! I love your home, it is very, very welcoming. Great job on matching the limestone, the paint color is perfect, and that landscaping is perfect.

Happy to hear Milo is doing as well as can be hoped for. You're a good mom, and I'm sure Milo feels your love. ♥

Now, those tamales......no shaming or condescension from me, only kudos for the attempt at the process. It certainly gives one an appreciation for the process, doesn't it? And I'm sure the recipients will feel the love, and that's all that matters. In the end, that's really all that matters.

Jill said...

The make over is great and I had to laugh out loud when you said those were permits in the window, not eviction notices. Tamales! Yay for you! Looking forward to hear how they turn out. We live in a community that is 90% Latino and I have eaten some delicious authentic ones but have never tried them myself. Flan is a dessert they make too that I love and still need to try.

Mary@mydogsmygardenandmary said...

So glad to hear that Milo is better. I am facing what you are also. My Waldo has liver problems and I cook special meals fr him and he is doing better, but he is old - 14 yrs. I love him so much, he knows what I am thinking....

You are one brave woman to try your hand at making tamales. I would never attempt to even think about it. Some of my friends get their whole family and make them. I found some wonderful ones at Coscto. I like the chicken ones. Wishing you lots of luck and I know that they will be special.

I have been on that medication for my arthritis, but you get crazy hungry and I put on some of the weight that I lost. So I am fighting with myself to get it back off. I lost 40 lbs and have put 20 back on. I also have to watch my carbs.

Well my dear, sounds like your one busy lady. I love the changes made to your home, it looks terrific. GREAT JOB!!

Take care of yourself Jane and enjoy your weekend.

Hugs dear friend,
Mary

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

Your home remodel looks wonderful, Jane! I love that mossy gray paint you picked and the walkway and landscaping look great. I'm so sorry about your Milo. We've never had dogs or cats as my husband is allergic but I had plenty as a kid and can understand how they become part of the family. The only way I can lose weight is by cutting back on carbs and walking on the treadmill every day. I'm lucky to have one downstairs with a television to watch so I don't get bored ;) Good luck with everything you're dealing with, Kiddo.

Lisa said...

I've always wanted to keep a journal but I cant hardly keep up my blog! lol. I like to write. Maybe I can start one the first of the year.
Good luck on your weight loss. I have faith you can reach your goal. I lost 50 lbs.
If you read my blog, you know I did it with Nutrisystem but I also kept a daily and weekly blog post on my weight loss journey which helped me stay accountable. I also use MyFitnessPal app to log my food each day. That's another big help. Good luck.
Lisa

Kathleen George said...

Cuddles to Milo :). Our pet family members are intertwined with our hearts and theirs, full of love:).
Tamales! Decades ago, my husband, best friend and I made tamales from her friends Hispanic moms recipe. The day was full of 70s music and Margaritas while we made them, they turned out delicious too!
Your front yard looks beautiful and the removal of the ivy opened it up. We had a ivy hedge near our house growing up and dread cutting it back, bugs and creepy things in there, scary!
Take one day at a time, cutting back each day and replacing with energy food for the body, as I tell myself too. Although I'm thinking of homemade stuffing in a couple of weeks;).
I love your blog and you have amazing readers, good ideas and very supportive :). Have a beautiful Veterans Day weekend, God Bless our troops, past and present! Kathleen in Az

An Oasis in the Desert said...

I'm so sorry I missed your post about Milo and that little sweetie's birthday party. She is such a darling little girl!

I can identify with Milo a little bit....I was quite spacey at times and even had a few minor accidents. Even though, we humans are told some of what to expect, it's still a surprise how the body reacts; and I can only imagine how confusing it must be for Milo. My prayers are with you....as one pet owner/lover to another, our little furry ones take up a huge spot in our hearts.

I think your house is so charming....even more so after all the work you had done. Great curb appeal!

Warm hugs coming your way, Jane.
Carol

Sissie's Shabby Cottage said...

Jane,
I'm sure hoping and praying hat your little Milo continues to improve. It's so heartbreaking when our fur babies are hurting. I just know he will beat this and go on to live a long and happy life with you. As for going to the gym and eating healthier, I can relate to the promises that we make to ourselves. It seems the older I get the less energy I have to get on a healthy track. Sometimes I think I'm destined to be chubby and loveable...LOL!
I love the improvements that you have done to your home. It has such lovely curbside appeal and I know it makes you happy to see your home looking beautiful.
hugs,
Sissie

Amy at Ms. Toody Goo Shoes said...

I'm just catching up with you, Jane, and I'm sorry to read about Milo, but glad to read that he's improving. I love all of your ramblings - it's like having lunch with a friend, and catching up on a bunch of topics. I, too, have been feeling unorganized and undisciplined, especially since I thought I'd have time to get things under control with my son away at college. Nope! And I like saving recipes, too, most of which I'll never make. The landscaping around your house looks great - I think it looks bigger without the ivy! I would love to rip out mostly everything in the front of my house, but hubby's not on board yet. Good luck with those tamales - yikes!

Kit said...

Your house looks great! I love the new look and it looks like it will be easier to take care of. Sending Milo good vibes. I have a 17 year old cat that is needing some extra TLC and I baby him too. He is my best bud. :) Kit

Pam - @diy Design Fanatic said...

Your house looks wonderful! Everything looks great, especially the landscaping! Kudos to you for making tamales!We've never made them in our family(even my Mexican grandmother). We would always purchase them from a Mexican lady at Christmas. Yum, they were always so good! Glad Milo is a bit better.

La Table De Nana said...


Who could ask for more up front and honest?
I love that about you.

Love the new journal..and all your devotion.
I am so not a gym person.
I am so not a gym person.
Did I say that already?

Hate seeing anyone..2 legged or 1 legged not well..
sure makes you love them even more though ..for me.
A different love..filled w/ empathy.

Your house..geesh I wish I could hire someone to do that to me LOL;);)
Kidding..

It looks great Jane!

Take care:)

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

The house looks great and I hope Milo improves. LOVE that new journal. I'm going to look for one soon too. I'm making some journals but I can never have enough! Enjoy your weekend! Hugs, Diane

It's me said...

The house look Great !...poor Milo i hope he feeling beter soon.....i am praying for HIM....love love love Ria x ❤️

Doreen@foxdenrd said...

It breaks my heart to hear about Milo. I know he’s feeling bettter, but it’s still a difficult thing for him, and you, to go through. Our fur babies are so precious.

Tamales, huh? Well, I’ve witnessed how hard they are to make so I’m bowing down to you my friend. Now don’t hate me, but I personally don’t like them too much so would never attempt to make them.

Your house looks lovely. It’s amazing what a change in landscaping and a few tweaks will accomplish.

xxx

Kelly said...

I’m so sorry to hear about Milos health problems. I hope all of the meds and treatment work wonders for him and your healthy dog is back again! My dog has bladder problems because of taking lasix. He has to urinate frequently too. Because he is partially blind we have to go outside with him and watch him too. It is stressful! He’s on a bunch of pills and eye drops too. Lots of vet visits and the money adds up! It is no wonder that you’re feeling the way you are. Just remember that “This too shall pass”. I always hang on to those words when life gets tough.

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

That a change to the front of your home, it looks terrific. It sounds like you had wonderful people doing your job. I started wearing a Fitbit the first of September and it is a wonderful motivator that you might want to give a try. I just walk but I've lost 8 lbs. and have gone done one size in my clothes.

amist said...


شركة امست للتنظيف
امست للنظافة

شركة امست للتنظيف بالقطيف هي افضل شركة تنظيف بالمنطقة الشرقية يمكنكم الاعتماد عليها في تنظيف المنازل والشقق والفلل والبيوت والمجالس والكنب والمفروشات والخزانات والمسابح وكافة خدمات التنظيف الشاملة والمتنوعة بافضل جودة وافضل الادوات وامهر العمالة وارخص الاسعار بخصومات تصل الي 30% اتصل الان واحصل علي الخصم مع شركة امست للتنظيف

Cheryl @ TFD said...

Poor little Milo, it's so hard to see beloved pets having health issues. They are like family and when a member of our family is hurting, we hurt too.
I love the new landscaping! Your home looks so pretty.
Know what you mean about putting our most flattering photos out there. I think we all do that. I'm trying to eat better since my blood sugar shot way up, but it's hard. All the good stuff I love to eat is on the No list. Of course. The hardest thing for me is giving up white bread. I love my rolls and sandwiches. :)
Take care and have a nice week! xx Cheryl

Decor To Adore said...

I cannot get over the amazing transformation of the house. It is amazing! Keeping sweet Milo in my thoughts and prayers. I know that you and I consider our furry friends as family.

Enjoy this time of Thanksgiving.

June said...

So happy I stopped by this morning to read your journal Jane. I have been wanting to write and tell you how sorry I am about sweet Milo. I know how you cherish him and he couldn't be luckier to have such a mommy!
What an undertaking with the tamales...WOW-WOW-WOW and my WOW's could go on and on........

I LOVE the transformation on the front of your house! It is amazing Jane!!! I love everything about it! LOVE the porch and sidewalk changes!!!

Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving with your beautiful family sweetie!
sending love...

laurie said...

I have missed so much, been away so long, missed you all and found my way back,,, I'm so sorry to hear of all the bad happenings and I have so much to catch up on but I wish health and happiness in the mean while,, take care sweet lady,,

handmade by amalia said...

I am sending you a big big hug and a virtual slice of chocolate cake. And a hug for poor Milo as well.
Amalia
xo

bj said...

ahhh...what a cute house...it looks wonderful.
I love tamales with a passion but have never tried to make them.

Sarah said...

Jane, I'm late to all of this,but you know I'm thinking of you and your precious Milo.
The house looks terrific. Great job! Happy Thanksgiving, my friend!