Horsing Around Fun!

Welcome to my virtual barn where I will share photos of my barn friends Chloe, Zack and my girlfriends horse Gracie. These three ponies are the apple of our eyes. Yes, we dote on them and I have to admit I am rather obsessed with their care. I don’t often miss a day, even if it is just to check on them and make sure they have enough food and water. Even though we pay for their care at the barn we board at, we as horse owners like to check them daily if possible. I use to not go every single day, and when I was baby sitting my granddaughter I would take days off until she got big enough to go with me. I miss those days, since she now lives in Arizona. We fondly call our horses, our ponies. They are not ponies, its just a term of endearment. ❤

The last few weeks had some very hot days, although the horses didn’t seem to mind too much. We just turn them out on really hot days because it is still good to get them to stretch their legs and walking helps move their gut and keep the blood flowing. Just like for us, walking and exercise is essential for well being but when it’s over 100 degrees (38C) we do not need to over do it so we can avoid heat exhaustion. In the last couple of weeks I was able to take some videos I would like to share, along with more photos of the ponies turned out. I’m just a horse crazy gal! 😀

Zack, Chloe and I in the round pen. This is a small arena usually 24×24 round – this one I think is bigger, I’ll have to measure some day. It’s a great place to exercise them!

You might be wondering, two horses in a small arena? I wouldn’t try and do this with just any horses. It is a small enclosure to where if the two horses did not get along, there could be kicking or fighting or? but my two horses are a herd. Actually, all three horses are a herd with us humans being in the mix as well. They have been acclimated and turned out together for many years.

The funniest thing Chloe does is she will chase the other two when out in the bigger arena when these big horse fly’s are around (they are akin to deer fly’s in the East only bigger. I looked them up and horse fly’s are bigger than the common house fly, deer fly’s are in between these two for size. Both land on animals to suck their blood and only the female horse fly bite for blood to feed eggs. They are huge ranging in size from 3/4 – 1 1/4 inches long. They are not numerous thankfully!)

Anyways, Chloe will canter around (run around) the arena to escape these dreaded fly’s and when she does this she inevitably runs near Zack and Gracie which in turn run too. Some days they exercise themselves just getting away from the horse fly’s! (They are easy to kill, they are so huge you can hit them easy with your hand and they fall to the ground and then I step on them. Sorry, not sorry horse fly!)

A nice ride in the arena. It is a bit hot so we are just walking to get in our steps!

It was pretty easy to video in the arena. It is nice and safe except watch out for the tree!! Haha, I am happy they walk close to the rail (which is the fence line) and of course the tree isn’t as low as Chloe’s head as she heads near it and the branches are right at my height sitting on her back. You can see Gracie getting exercised by her Mom and Zack is next to me as I pony him to get him exercised as well. I call it killing two birds with one stone, since it’s so hot I did not want to take the time to ride them each individually. If I do ride Zack, I usually ride him in the arena unless someone wants to ride with me that needs a horse on the trail.

I am so happy I have been riding on the trails for many years. Zack is 25 years old and Chloe is 16 years old this year. I have owned her since she was 2 so we have been together many, many years. I have had Zack for about 6 years now. He is part of the team, as they all fall in line with very FUN rides! Consistency and time in the saddle is key to calm trail rides!

I just LOVE to groom them. When I graduated from high school and before I decided to go to college I worked full-time for a horse trainer. He trained Hunter/Jumpers and I showed my horse with him all up and down Southern California. I worked for him for about 4 years, and what I learned was grooming is key to keep all the show horses coats glistening. I bring these years of grooming with me every day I’m at the barn.

Love you Chloe and Zack!

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Sept. 2, 2020

 A smiling face is a beautiful face. A smiling heart is a happy heart.
                                             Dr. T.P. Chia
                                                                  

I love smiling and darn it all, we now can’t see those smiles when one is out and about! I am missing them and can see in a person’s eyes when they are smiling. Welcome to my smile post and I am smiling because my arrowhead potted plant I am featuring as my first photo is just loving the weather and is looking so pretty. It is growing and doing excellent and makes me smile!

Mind you, I totally understand we need to keep safe, I do not want you to think I do not understand the masks. Just missing smiles and I know one day we will be beyond all of this and will then be able to enjoy all those smiles. 😀

We have had some cooling off with our weather which has been so welcome as we move into September. BUT (there is always a but) we are expecting another heat wave this weekend. It was a cool 60 degrees this morning on my walk. It felt so refreshing and it did get up to almost 90 degrees today but this weekend it is going to be over 100. Saturday and Sunday weather reports are to hit 113 degrees (45C) YIKES! I feel fortunate we had a nice trail ride today. We won’t ride this weekend.

I am also smiling because my daughter is coming home for this Labor day weekend! YIPPEE! She has not been able to come home since February. We are all excited. She lives near the ocean up near Vandenberg AFB which has the best weather ever. So now she is coming to heat! She will be bringing all summer clothes and am hoping we can keep the house cool enough for her. It will be a fun visit as I was able to take an extra day off! YAY! SMILING! 😀

Thank you for visiting my smile, and I am thankful for my horses that make me smile every day. I am hoping I am not being to redundant with my smile posts as sometimes I feel like the same things always make me smile. I want to stay positive and spreading smiles is my way to bring a little positivity to you, as there is always something out there that can bring you a smile!

Happy Smiling Cowgirl,

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Aug. 26, 2020 – Thank YOU!

THANK YOU FOR FOLLOWING MY BLOG! ❤

Welcome to my weekly smile! I am humbled, elated, surprised, happy, and very grateful for all of you for following my blog. I know there are millions of people who blog and to have a following at all really means the world to me and blogging has become a very social interaction that I am really enjoying. I thank each and every one one of you that read and follow my blog posts. And Thank You To All who comment as our interactions together make me smile, laugh and reflect as we exchange positive thoughts and support. I am so thankful for the blogging friends I have made 😉 and I am sure I will make many more as we continue our journey in blogging! 😀

It’s a small milestone when I see how many followers some of you super bloggers have and I am so very grateful you follow as I am sure it encourages those of us with a smaller footprint. Sometimes I feel like I will let people down, but I am getting the hang of blogging and I want to stay true to myself and the passions that I have in this crazy life we all are trying to lead to the best of our abilities. I never really knew what blogging was and what it can be as I am sure it is different for everyone. I think there is a niche for everyone out there and so I am thankful I am figuring out mine. I feel like I need to do some cleaning up of my blog site as I learn. I didn’t realize what the “categories” on my site meant for instance, and I can see I have not been using this tool to its best intentions. I am learning every single day!

As I write this today, I don’t want to ignore the fact that there are some sad situations happening around us. We have had really bad fires in the North of this state I call home. I pray for all affected in Northern California and all the other states that are battling wild fires. My son who lives just North of Phoenix messaged us yesterday saying the smoke from all the fires are affecting the air quality in Arizona. They are warned to stay inside due to the poor air quality, but like he says they don’t venture out much in 115 (46C) degree heat. Also, stay safe out there those near the hurricane in the Gulf.

Speaking of my son and his family (who I miss terribly) he says his daughter is really enjoying kindergarten. He sent me this cute photo!

She is getting so big! She is a good student! Love you baby girl! ❤
My sons kitties, the brothers! Dublin on the left and Wolfie on the right. They are on baby Teddy’s changing table, so adorable! ❤

These photos just bring me smiles, of course I miss them so much and can’t wait for some day to live closer. We have to take a day at a time since this has been such a crazy year. Can you believe August is almost over?

The rest of my smiles this week go to my other animals I do not share all that often. I LOVE THEM ALL dearly and I find that I focus mostly on my horses, partly because my blog is suppose to be about my horse stories, so as I try and figure out my blog I keep thinking I should stay away from all my other animals. But then I am finding as I write and share, I am sharing my crafts, my garden and my kitties and my sons kitties. I have 2 dogs as well so I thought I would share some photos. I don’t share often but they are a big part of my life too. So here I go sharing what is in my life, which I should not worry about since my blog is “My life” and horse stories…. Haha, I’m just too much in my head. Just get on with it Diana. It’s all good!

Thank you for visiting my smile post, what makes you smile? I am enjoying all my animals and missing my grand kids and keeping busy with life and work! I am enjoying blogging, with it becoming more important to me each day. I enjoy this venue so very much, as I sit and write these words ~ I am smiling! 😀 To view more smile posts I encourage you to visit Trent who hosts our weekly smiles. Thank you Trent!

Appreciatively loving (Cowgirl 😉 ) Grandma,

~Diana ❤

P.S. Thank you to those who have given me such helpful tips on my blogging journey. Thank you Maria, and Beaton.

Weekend Coffee Share; Aug. 22, 2020

Welcome to my coffee share where we share what’s been happening in our lives. Can I get you a cup of coffee or tea? Too hot in my neck of the woods for a hot beverage. How about a cold brew?

Welcome and come in out of the heat. We can social distance in our family room as it is miserably hot outside. We have been having such hot weather, but what makes it rather unbearable is the humidity. We are spoiled southern Californian’s and do not do humidity, we just don’t! Haha, we melt and complain and wish this would all go away ASAP! Hopefully it will and then I can stop complaining. 😀

I feel badly for my little tiny garden. I try and keep it watered in this heat. I don’t mind if the bell peppers are done, I went ahead and picked what I could and will let them ripen more on the counter. I actually have a lot and am not sure what I am going to do with them all. Funny, I picked this veggie to grow as it’s not my favorite, I can eat them but I like tomatoes better. I can just cut up a tomato and eat it with a little salt sprinkled on it, but a bell pepper? I know I can chop it up and use in my salads, I’ll have to look up some recipes! 😀

There is one very green tomato. Not sure if it will ripen up as my tomato plant I thought was done but there are a lot of new sprouts on it so maybe I will get more tomatoes. We will see!

I love my honeysuckle. My hubby accidentally butchered one side of my honeysuckle plant. It is like a big bush and where he chopped it all off it has taken a long time to come back. It is finally coming around and starting to bloom. I asked him to not cut it any more and I will have to carefully prune it. It usually blooms in the summer, such a welcome beautiful blooming plant! The smell is so sweet, love me some honeysuckle!! ❤

It’s been so stinking hot that I was only able to trail ride once this last week. I only had one day I could get to the barn early at 8:30 am so we could try and beat the heat. My girlfriend and I rode and got these ponies some exercise and I will say by the time we got on it felt too hot, but it was under 90 degrees, just the humidity made it feel hotter. I suspect we won’t ride again until end of next week. The heat should subside soon, hopefully! (Trying not to complain too much!) 😀

Thanks for having coffee with me today. It has been a busy week with work and all the animals. I feel a bit drained because of this heat (I just can’t help myself, it does zap your energy – darn heat!) I also am covering for a vacation at work. My days off were last Monday and Tuesday, then I work Wednesday through this coming Monday. I am working this weekend, which means I need to wrap up this coffee share so I can get to bed! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. I will stop by and have coffee with you if you are sharing and if not have a great week ahead!

Trying to stay cool!

~Diana ❤

August 19th, 36 Years Together!

I can’t believe it is our anniversary today and to think we were married 36 years ago on a hot sunny afternoon. My dad walking me down the aisle, all my family gathered in a small quaint church. Oh the memories, and there are lots of them. I wonder if he sometimes looks back and wonders to himself, what did I get myself into? Haha, he married me with 3 dogs and 2 cats as I was in-between horses at the time. I think we would have a much better nest egg for our retirement if we did not own horses. But I have always said I don’t ever want to retire, not completely. I want to stay busy even with a part-time job so that I can keep my hobbies and my horses! We have never ever in my entire life not had an animal in our home. I grew up with parakeets, cats, dogs, guinea pigs, rabbits and lots of fish in some cool fish tanks and when I was 10 years old my first horse. AND I didn’t even live on a farm, nope, just suburbia with an animal loving family!

When my husband met me I was riding my sister’s horse. She needed help and so of course I loved helping her keep her horse fit and exercised. This is back in the early 1980’s, I should have warned him but he had to have known as horses are in my blood. I am hoping to be riding as long as my body can ride! My husband has actually ridden with me before. I had a gentle bay Morgan that would rather eat than work. My husband did very well with him but riding really isn’t his thing and he only rode a short time. If you were to ask my husband his love, he would have a sweet corvette in our garage! Haha, cars are his thing. Maybe one day he can buy a nice Sunday car to drive around and go to car shows with ~ someday! ❤

It’s funny because my hubby texted me after I got my card this morning saying he hoped I didn’t think it was too cheesey! I LOVE Cheesey, the more gooey the better, because the love of my life isn’t a gooey, cheesey romantic kind of guy, far from it – so a nice card like this is from his heart! Even though he says he isn’t good at picking out cards. I am glad he went this route. LOOK, I did the same thing! Haha, If you look at my card with the horses (I think it is cool I found one with a grey horse like Zack, and Chloe isn’t that color brown, but has white on her face!) My card is pretty cheesey too! It says inside ~ Sharing life with you gets more beautiful all the time ~ AWW, and the front is the most beautiful art work with lots of birds, butterflies, flowers, nice and cheesey. But worth sharing because life is too dang short to not be ooey, gooey, and cheesey, every once in awhile. What loving fun!! Especially after 36 years. I JUST LOVE IT AND I LOVE HIM!

As I was trying to figure out what I wanted to include in this post, I went back through the photos of this year and some videos. As I try and share as many smiles as I can, this video I made when we were in Hawaii made me laugh! We had so much fun on that trip, I can’t wait for the day we can freely travel again. We were visiting the Dole Plantation and they have the most scrumptious Dole whip. We all know what it should taste like, and I sometimes ask silly questions. Haha, I am kind of a nerdy gal, but hey, that’s me and as I laughed I decided heck, why not share! What a fun memory!

So happy I can share videos! Fun vacation!

When I got home from the barn this morning I found these beautiful flowers which were delivered on my front porch! My daughter sent them, she is so very sweet, with a loving note that just melts my heart. I am so truly blessed and lucky to have the most loving children. I want only the best for them as parents do…. This anniversary fell right smack in the middle of the week. So we still have an anniversary dinner to celebrate and am not sure how this will take place as we may just have to order food. But I am feeling really good about our future, as plans to be closer to my grand kids are still in the making. Thanks for visiting today on my anniversary, it was fun to share!

Happily married Cowgirl!

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Aug. 18, 2020 – SURPRISE!

I know a rather unconventional opening but I really wanted to make this a surprise as my smile post this week is about the most fabulous weekend with my family. So if I used one of my other photos I will be sharing, then you would guess right away why I have the biggest SMILE right now. I am so excited to share! 😀

As we try and make sense of things with all that is happening in this crazy world my son and family decided they needed to come to California to visit my daughter-in-laws grandfather who is unfortunately very ill. My condolences to their family as he only has a short time with liver failure. I hate making this sad occasion into one of my happiest, I feel like I should apologize as this was not my plan but I can’t help but feel overjoyed because I finally met my baby grandson!! AND it was wonderful to see my granddaughter Alice! ❤ (I think I will be forgiven.)

Oh my goodness! They only came for two days with one day spent with her family and the next they spent the afternoon at my home. So much FUN! Thank you dear Lord, I can’t tell you how happy I am to finally meet baby Teddy. Isn’t he just adorable? Well, I am prejudice I know but I just had to share as these are my only grand children and so any minute I can see them, hold them and share some love makes Grandma’s HAPPY!

I have some more photos to share, selfies with my granddaughter. They aren’t bad, a little blurry here and there. I am sharing anyways! This is what makes me smile as I am remembering this last weekend. I welcome this kind of surprise any day! I didn’t find out they were coming until last Friday. It all worked out so great.

As I was getting ready to write this blog post my phone rang and it was my son calling and Alice wanted to talk to me and tell me about her kindergarten class. It is online and she was telling me on the phone about this cookie jar. It was so cute talking to her as we have not done this often. We did video chat the weekend before this which I always love as well. I just wish we lived closer so I could help more and babysit to give mom and dad a break. In time, we will see what the future holds.

Thank you for visiting my wonderful smile post this week. I have been meaning to get this together. I have been dealing with a heat wave here where we live, it’s been really miserable trying to take care of all the animals. We had to take one of my dogs to the vet for skin problems. He is okay, got some shots and is on antibiotics. It’s always something, I don’t talk about the always something but I know we have these in our lives. I hope you all can find something that makes you smile? We all need smiles, I’ll end with how I began as these two make me smile as well! 😀

Happy Cowgirl Grandma,

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Aug. 12, 2020

I was in a hurry when I took this sunrise photo as I was on my morning walk and stopped quickly to take the shot. I decided to use my app on my phone as I exercised. The app is always tracking my walks but I decided to click on the walk tab and have it start and track my walk. This is all new to me so it counted me down and start. Then when I stopped to take this photo, it said pause exercise. So I quickly snapped it and started moving again and it resumed. It told me when I was half way, and encouraged me when I was almost home! Haha, I did not walk alone this morning with my phone talking to me along the way. 😀

When I got home I got 6 awards from my app. I had bested my walks in many ways which was my goal when I set out. You see, I have been walking for a long time but when I was visiting my daughter last time some light bulbs went off as we jogged a little and then she was showing me how people power walk. I don’t like to jog, but have added a bit of this to my walks to raise my heart rate and I am walking much faster power walking up hills which also raises my heart rate. I guess in the past I was walking but not thinking how can I get in better shape? what can I do to get more out of my walks? I am doing this now!

I thought I would share one of my rewards as it makes me Smile! 😀

My daughter has used these kinds of apps and she was saying they are good but when you run or get out there and can’t perform like you normally do or you do not get better like you thought you would, it can also be disappointing to see the numbers on your app. I get that, there is always good things and bad things when tracking what you do but for me as I get moving to improve my walking it is fun to see the progress! I will continue to use it for awhile. 😀

I am smiling from ear to ear because I can get this pretty baby blanket in the mail. It is nice and pink for the baby girl of a dear friend. She has two boys and is so excited for her baby daughter due in September. I have one more baby blanket to make and am not sure what I am going to do, still thinking about that. They are super FUN to create and all my crafting helps keep me sane and relaxed. It really is a stress reliever!

Thank you for visiting my smile post this week. I want to continue my walking and if I can pick up my pace, my next step is to add miles. I am really motivated and hope I can reach my goals. Have a great rest of your week. 😀

Smiling, exercising Gal –

~Diana ❤

Summer Trail Rides and Horse Fun!

I have been wanting to share some more trail riding fun and as I get ready to go out on any given day, I always give my horses some time in an arena. It might be our round pen, which is a smaller round arena (usually around 24X24 round, but I think the one at this barn is bigger) where I make them trot around and stretch their legs. I may turn them out in our big arena where I will ask them to run and/or gallop to really stretch their legs! I have shared a video of them running in the big arena here. And sometimes I let them out in this turn out where there are trail obstacles permanently in this arena and so it is not a good place to make them run because there are all those big poles on the ground and I wouldn’t want them to run too fast in this arena and trip and fall. So this arena I let them do what they want, they often are scratching each others back as I let them mosey around.

UP CLOSE! HAHA! Chloe looking for a treat as Zack is photo bombing! They are not shy, not at all and she knows if she gives me a kiss (which I taught her to do) that I just may have a horse cookie in my pocket. Kind of a dirty nose, but then its the stables and they sniff and smell stuff and well, can be plenty dirty until I groom them and clean them all up. And then we do it all again the next day! Its a labor of love, and one I will never stop loving. I enjoy grooming them as much as they enjoy getting dirty! You have to love the outdoors and not mind the dust and dirt as it is EVERYWHERE! 😀

Mission Accomplished!! If you follow my blog you will know that what I LOVE doing with my horses is trail riding. We have miles of trails in our town and I do not trail ride alone very often. But there are times where my girlfriend is working and so if I don’t want to ride in the arena, I have to trail ride alone with both my horses. They are very good on the trails having logged in hundreds if not thousands of miles over the last 12 years. I ride Chloe and pony Zack (which means I have Zack leading next to me with a lead line while I ride Chloe in my western saddle). Here is a photo of Zack walking next to Chloe.

I am so proud of both my ponies and I am proud of myself for finally getting out there and riding. It has been my goal after moving to this new barn to ride alone with my horses on the trails. I’m a happy cowgirl! 😀

I decided to give both horses a bath and usually I spray them off kind of like a car. Not that the spray is really hard but it helps to spray to get the sweat and dirt off their coat. But today I just let the water run over them and boy how they loved the water just running off their backs. I took videos but because my hands were wet, I tried to dry them off and then for some reason I held my phone at an angle and both videos are sideways. I’ve been debating whether I should share, because it bugs me that I can’t rotate them so it’s not right. I suppose you can just turn your head and still see them getting this wonderful cool bath on a hot summer day! Okay, I’ve talked myself into sharing one video of Chloe. I have a video of Zack which I think you have to turn your head to the left to watch. Haha, I swear I had my phone positioned correctly – apparently not! Next time I will do better and have the video straight! It’s all a learning curve right? 😀

Goodness, I am talking kind of strange too… haha, I am just a crazy horse loving girl and so forgive the sideways video. For those of you who do not own horses I thought you would enjoy it even though you have to turn your head. At least it’s not upside down, I would not share if it was! Since I took some still photos I will finish up sharing those as this post is all about my summer fun with my ponies!!! ❤ ❤ ❤

Thanks for coming along with me on my horsey fun. We turned out the horses, rode out on the trail, turned out my girlfriends horse and then gave Chloe and Zack a nice bath! It was a beautiful day, and I have been wanting to share. I will have to make another trail ride video soon. I have shared one already which is here if you missed it. Loving my big furry friends!

~Diana ❤

P.S. If you really want to see Zack’s video I can share on another post, let me know in the comments. It’s okay if no one comments. It’s the same watery fun only you have to turn your head to view! Lol

My Weekly Smile; Aug 5, 2020 – Birthdays!

Welcome to my weekly smile! And what makes me smile this week is BIRTHDAYS! YES! It is birthday month. The first birthday this week which has been celebrated is for my beautiful grand daughter, Alice. She turned 5 and I can’t believe she is 5 years old and is starting kindergarten. I was able to get a care package together with lots of presents for her and some extra gifts and baby clothes for her baby brother. She is so special to me as grand children are and I know not everyone is a grand parent, but it makes me wish as I think back that I was able to see and be with my grand parents. They lived states away and I rarely saw them. May they rest in peace.

As I am smiling at the wonderful photos I will share, I am also smiling at all the birthdays this month. My brother’s birthday was this week also. He lives in Reno, NV and we do not visit as often as I would like so am hoping some day I can visit all my relatives more often. Something that I was planning on doing this year until travel was stopped or hampered, darn it all…. but let’s talk about smiles! Stay on track, Diana! Lol 😀

Missing her like crazy! My son has asked me if I could come and babysit these cutie patutie grand kids some time soon as he would like to take his wife out camping for a weekend get-a-way. I would absolutely Love to do this but it is all just in the planning stages right now, so I can wait patiently and hopefully something will fall into place. The way things have gone this year its really flipped everything upside down and this is my weekly smile so let’s keep on smiling, shall we? YES! What makes you smile? Here is more!!!

The celebrating continues as next week is my best friends birthday! She reads my blog posts so “Happy Birthday Sally!” She will be surprised to be one of my featured photos! She brings me SO MANY SMILES as she is my companion with her beautiful horse Gracie. We will be trail riding later this morning. I CAN’T WAIT as ya’ll know how much I Love my ponies and my trail rides! I will help her celebrate next week because that is what friends are for, right? She is like a sister to me as we have been together since we were in grade school (over 50 years!) we have shared so much together. I’m SMILING from ear to ear! 😀

I’m going to wrap up my smile post today wishing all my relatives a Happy Birthday. There are 2 more sister’s with birthdays this month. One is August 23 and the other is August 26 and to be honest I can never remember who’s is on what day, but Facebook will remind me and/or I will look on my calendar list of birthdays. My nephew’s birthday is Aug 14th and I believe my other nephew’s wife has a birthday this month too, busy month. HAPPY BIRTHDAY family! ❤

Thanking my son for the wonderful kitty photos, these brothers are so adorable. I am so thankful I have a place to share all my smiles! I thank you for visiting and am hoping you all have a wonderful week and to remember to smile and enjoy each and every day!

Feeling grateful, Happy Smiling Grandma!

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Mini Vacation Fun!

Welcome to my weekend coffee share and I am sitting in my daughter’s apartment not far from the cafe where I took this photo of my coffee in Orcutt, CA. It is so beautiful up here on the coast with the best weather! The high’s here are in the low 80’s and at night cools to the 50’s. We went for a cool morning walk this morning as it was foggy with the marine layer which has been rolling in each evening. Such a nice relief from home which is in a heat wave this week! Crazy, we picked a good week to visit.

My daughter can’t come home and visit as they still have restrictions on traveling as she is in the military and not allowed to venture fair. Not worth detailing all that out but since we are just over three hours away, it is not hard for me to take some vacation days which I need to use anyways and we just drive up and stay with her and this visit we did some shopping for my grand kids and put together care packages which will thankfully be delivered on my grand daughters birthday! I am SO EXCITED WE were able to get that all together yesterday.

Today we ventured out and traveled up the coast to Pismo Beach. I took some photo’s I will share and a short video of the Pacific ocean and some pigeons that thought we had food for them. 😀 In Pismo Beach they have this AMAZING cinnamon roll shop which is thankfully open for take out only. It’s called Old West Cinnamon Rolls, and oh my, we bought an original, a pecan and one with cream cheese frosting and then split them up to share! ❤

After we cut up the cinnamon rolls and began to eat them my daughter says we should have taken a photo! Darn it all, I wish I took a photo but my hands were so sticky even though we had plastic knives and forks I couldn’t get my phone out and didn’t want to stop eating them to be honest. So DELICIOUS! I was able to get some photos of the beach after cleaning up!

It wasn’t too crowded thankfully as you can see not very many people on the board walk to the pier. The pier is closed but the beaches were open and you could see people kept their distances from each other which is good. There were some surfers too. There were plenty of shops and restaurants open. Masks are mandatory everywhere in CA so we always wear them on all outings. The restaurants here in California are all serving outside with all the tables with umbrella’s or easy ups to block the sun. I feel really badly for all the business’s so it seems this is working pretty well. All the fast food joints that have drive thru’s are drive thru only and the other ones like this cinnamon roll place only allow 4 customers at a time into the building and there are plenty of lines out the door waiting to buy food. These are crazy days but it seems to all be working! I always carry wet wipes and we always wash up when we get home. It was a FUN morning!

The pigeons were being fed by some people nearby and thought we had food too! Nope!

After enjoying our cinnamon rolls and walking around a bit we then headed up the coast to a small farm that had some goats and chickens, cows, typical farm animals – Avila Valley Farms. You could buy food to feed them but what we went there for was the farms store. I bought some raspberry pepper jelly, honey which is from a local beehive and some peach salsa. I wanted to get unusual items to try as they are all made locally. There was so much to choose from, fresh produce, my daughter bought a bunch of items that she needed so it was a fun stop. We bought fresh artichoke’s and are cooking them up now as my daughter and I LOVE FRESH artichokes. (The men in my family won’t touch them!) We boil them and eat the meat off every leaf and then devour the heart! YUMMY! We are having a salad with these beautiful, delicious artichokes.

Thank you for joining me on my weekend coffee share adventures! We are traveling during the week as I will be working Saturday and Sunday night shift so we travel home tomorrow. I thought since I missed last weeks coffee share I really wanted to join in this week. I am so happy to be able to visit with family and spend time with them really fills my heart and makes me so very happy! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and if you are sharing coffee I will make sure to stop by and join you.

Happy traveling Grandma and Mom,

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; July 29, 2020

Welcome to my weekly smile and as I set out on my walk this morning it was wonderful to feel the sunrise on my back. It was a nice 60 degrees and as I passed the school across the street there are many trucks delivering dirt or whatever they need to fill in a new parking lot. So many trucks coming and going and as I walk I feel and hear the rumble of their diesel engines as they idle waiting their turn. As I pass all this organized chaos I finally get far enough away to hear nature that is out cackling away. The roosters crow in neighboring yards and the morning doves are cooing away keeping me company as I walk the block. I giggled as one rooster cock-a-doodle doo went hoarse near the very end. Haha, sure made me smile as I took in the morning! 😀

I’m smiling as my teeny tiny garden is really flourishing. I get so EXCITED! The tomatoes are waning and I am thinking all my watering may be a little much for the one tomato plant – but that’s okay because it has given me plenty of tomatoes and since the two bell peppers are thriving, it is now time to see these babies grow bigger and I will have a ton of bell peppers as I counted over 20! I will be giving some away to my friends as I can’t eat them all. I know I can cut them up, flash freeze and then store in freezer if needed. But I want to share them too. They make me smile! 😀

I am also excited this week as I am going to see my daughter and have the rest of the week off from work. My youngest son and I will be driving the 3 hours or so up North to spend time with her and buy presents to send to my granddaughter. My granddaughter turns 5 next week and so we will send a nice care package and virtually celebrate this year and I have to say I feel truly blessed to have these beautiful grand children in our lives. I am hoping that I will be able to visit these grand babies next month as my son is trying to plan a weekend where I can baby sit so that he can take his wife camping in northern AZ for some time together. I am excited, and can patiently wait for a date. Here is that cute grandson, growing every month!

Teddy is such a cutie patutie and as he is still so small, it makes my grand daughter look so big. I can’t believe she is turning 5 years old. ❤ As these weeks fly by (can you believe it is the end of July?) I can’t believe it will be August next week. I have been following the weather very closely the last month or so and I did not realize that in AZ it does not cool off at night. It will cool from say 110 degrees high, down to 90 degrees at night! WOW, and if it is say 101 degrees high, it will go down to 80’s at night. SO HOT!

I asked my son if it was like this last year, he said he thought this year is worse but they have only been there a couple of years. He was saying it felt like when you are snowed in and you can’t go out, with Covid and now the heat – they are stuck in the house. It is hard to go for walks with the kids when it is 90 out at 8pm. UGH! this does not look like a place where I want to retire with my horses. We are weighing all options and are starting to look at other options. I don’t think my son with his family are going to make AZ their permanent residents, who knows what the future holds! I have to consider everything, so we are taking our time. I was just shocked how very hot that state is at least the lower half of that state. Northern AZ is higher elevation and better weather. We have time. (as I complain how fast time flies! Haha!)

Thank you for visiting my smile post! What makes you smile? I just had to share one more bloom. This photo is a small bud which just makes me smile. I hope you all are doing well and are healthy and happy. I know we all have our struggles in this life so to stop and smell the roses (couldn’t help myself from using that phrase, hehe) is one way to slow down and take in the day. Have a wonderful week! Stay safe ❤

Happy Smiling Grandma,

~Diana

My Weekly Smile: July 22, 2020

"There are no gardening mistakes, only experiments."
                                                                       -Janet K Phillips

I love this gardening quote because I feel like I make mistake after mistake but really I am learning and so to look at it as experiments as I learn brings me great confidence. I so appreciate the advice that I get along the way of my gardening adventures. I am okay with mistakes, I know that they are like steps in the learning ladder! My smile for this week is gardening success. After I mulched my container where my veggies are growing my bell peppers are taking off and are about an inch in length as you can see in the photo. Now the soil is staying nice and moist and I am seeing some healthy growth!

I am so happy, and it makes me want to continue in this container growing adventure. I have two more containers that I can use to grow more veggies which I will have to do some research to see what would be good to grow at this time of year. I am just one month into summer so if I buy starters I am sure there is a lot to choose from to grow. Fun to think about my teeny tiny garden!! I love being outside as this makes me smile too! I do have one more special smile I want to share, courtesy of my dear hubby.

I am a huge Food Network fan and watch so many cooking shows. I really like the competition shows, they are fun and entertaining to me and I realize this may not be everyone’s thing – but it is definitely right up there with my favorite thing to do as I sit and relax and crochet! Watching these shows (I record many of them) is my way of relieving stress in my busy schedule. I have one other of Ree Drummond’s cookbooks, so now I have two. I just love her cookbooks with all the photos and her food is very good. My sweet hubby makes me SMILE with this wonderful surprise!! Now I need to make him a nice meal. Comfort food with LOVE! It will be my pleasure to return him the favor with a lovely dinner! ❤ ❤ ❤

Thank you for visiting my smile this week. I am getting ready to go out and take care of my horses and wanted to get my smile post together to share!

Happy gardening smiles with a surprise!

~Diana ❤