Weekend Coffee Share; End Of February

Can I get you a nice hot cup of coffee? I do have tea and I can serve either hot or cold! I do love ice coffee for a change of pace, but my favorite is a nice warm mug of coffee with my favorite sweet Italian creamer. I am doing pretty good, how are you doing? I am enjoying our Southern California weather and my heart goes out to all in the frigid cold. I pray for all in areas where they met some bitter cold that affected not only households but farms and ranches. I am hoping some warm weather is near so that the thawing can begin. As I sip my coffee, I ponder what the future holds which for me is feeling more and more comfortable as I am enjoying my new job. Less stress and normal working hours, every weekend off! I feel like I am in work heaven, and that is my work at the veterinary laboratory. I can honestly say it is definitely the best decision I have made in a long time. I am so happy I decided to leave my other job after 20 years of night shift and supervising my department. I worked very hard, and now am working just as hard but without being in charge. I am SMILING! 😀

I am not sure why I am being so introverted with my thoughts. I guess because when you lose something so near and dear, it makes you look at your life and your decisions and what is happening now and what will the future hold. So much retrospection, it comes and goes but when I want to write this is what comes to the forefront of my mind. I believe this is natural, so forgive me as I wonder around my head with these things. I will say that as I am trying to focus my thoughts I am very grateful to be here to share. I really enjoy blogging and sharing. I have some fun photos I wanted to share. They are all kinds of random things I enjoy.

His mommy and daddy say he can say “awww duu” for “all done” which is so darn cute. He also purposely puts his foot in that position in the high chair to be “stuck” and laughs about it as you can see in the photo! Haha, he is a cutie patutie and is just as cute and adorable as my grand daughter was at this age! AND those kitties are so cute. My daughter use to have one of the brothers but he was really hard to have in her apartment with her Guinea pigs. So he went to live with his brother at my sons house. So it’s funny she gave her brother, the brother to his cat! Haha, follow?

And to make things more complicated my son had three cats when he took in the brother which made four and they all didn’t get along. My kitty was very old and went to kitty heaven, so I took two of my sons kitty’s and they are sister’s which one of them didn’t get along with the others. Between all of us (in different houses) we have six cats! I am so happy my daughter has found a nice beautiful black kitty that is so happy in her apartment with her Guinea pigs. The Guinea pigs live in a cage most of the time, it was the hay that the brother kept eating which upset his stomach and made messes all over the place. Anyways, fun to reminisce on how who got where! And I love to share their photos.

I have another photo of Jane on Irish but his ears aren’t forward but Jane is smiling. Haha, Jane still looks fine and I’ll call this my action shot! I have a super cute and heartwarming story to share about Jane and Irish. She told me this last weekend that since my horse Zack passed away Irish does the most sweetest thing. You see, Chloe lives in the barn up near the cross ties area where we all tack up for a ride. As Jane gets on Irish and they start walking to either the arena or the trail, she rides with a lose rein and he chooses a path directly to Chloe’s barn stall. He checks on her every day! They nose each other as if he is saying “it’s okay now” and then he walks off to a ride with his owner. I’m incredibly touched and I actually witnessed him doing this and it touches my heart. Chloe is well known at the stables as I have ridden with so many at the barn. They are feeling, sentient beings. ❤ ❤ ❤

Thank you for joining me for coffee today. I so enjoyed sharing and even though I have shared random items they are all near and dear to my heart. I am hoping you all have a wonderful week of the last week of February! I can’t believe March is around the corner. I am going to work on my gardening and am going to try a little bit at a time. I don’t want to bite off more than I can chew, because I would like to have a successful garden! I would love a super huge lush garden with many veggies and beautiful flowers and shrubs. I want to learn how to garden correctly, and do it all by myself or with help from hubby. And I will just slowly build on my garden, that’s more my speed. Looking forward to Spring!

Happy Gregarious Grandma,

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Taking a Short Break

Welcome to my weekend coffee share. Can I get you a cup of Joe? or maybe some tea? Sigh, I have had a crazy couple of weeks and so I am going to take a break. I wanted to write one more coffee share this weekend and let everyone know I am doing okay. For those of you who may not have read my last post I had to euthanize one of my horses last weekend, I’ll offer you the link here. But I totally understand if this is something that may be hard to read and I respect any and all decisions. I wanted to write a respectful and thoughtful post for my sweet boy, and it has helped me process the whole event. Anyone who owns animals knows these times are difficult but happen. Now I have to take one of our dogs to the vet as she has a growth on her belly (near a mammary gland). I hope it isn’t cancer, but it is getting a little bigger and is bothering her and now has some swelling so off to the vet we go. She is a super sweet girl, so I am praying it will be benign. We have another older dog who is just about completely deaf, but doing good otherwise. It seems the circle of life continues and so I thought I would take a couple weeks off of blogging. I just want to be in a better place and so I think since I have to deal with my sweet girl, this would be a good idea to take a break.

Haha, I caught her licking in the photo. They are the sweetest pups and Love my hubby! Not that they don’t love me too… They love my attention but the border collie is more attached to my hubby. It’s all good, it just is what it is. I can’t take dogs to the barn as they aren’t allowed. I know I don’t talk about my puppy dogs much, they are loving and are loved but you all know the center of my life is really the horses. I am surrounded by furry friends and love them all! ❤ ❤ ❤

I have been going to the stables every day to take care of Chloe. We have been going out on trail rides and I have to say she is super calm and seems very happy. Part of the reason why is because we don’t have Zack along as he was rather a bugger, nipping at her, he even use to bite my stirrup as we walked down the trail. It would be akin to an annoying brother or sister. You know, when you are young and they just don’t stop annoying or bothering you? That basically was Zack on every trail ride. I tried my best to get him to stop, but he never did and so Chloe would walk a little bit faster, sometimes moving over or nipping at him. You can totally tell how much at ease she is now. I have known this about the duo, but I couldn’t leave him at the barn alone with all his anxieties. As I write this I can say that I have felt guilty the last few days because there has been a sense of relief. I was always worried about Zack, now I don’t have to worry any more. Here is a cute photo of Zack I wanted to share!

It feels good to see him and I want to get some photos printed and framed. I may use this one but haven’t decided. Or I might just print up a photo book of all my photos of him. I think I would enjoy that too. I thought I would share some photos of Chloe and I on the trail this last week.

I moved her over one box stall with the paddocks and Zack was to be right next to her. She has more room now and I can tell is much happier with the room and the look outs. She can see what is happening and is content. She and I are doing good, and I am so thankful I have her to focus my energy on and it has made the healing go faster. I have lost 2 horses while owning Chloe. I had a Morgan before Chloe and when Chloe was 6 years old (I bought her when she was 2 years old) my Morgan passed away. It was another rather tragic event, we found him very ill and he passed away before we could get a vet on sight. I have been told by my vet he probably had an internal rupture (a twisted gut) which can happen with these rather fragile equines. Sorry for talking about this sad stuff, obviously on my mind with all the recent events. Chloe and I moved on from that and then 5 years later adopted Zack. I don’t want another horse, it will just be Chloe and I for a long time.

I don’t know what I will do when she gets older or starts to develop medical issues. She is 17 this year. Hopefully, it will be many years before I have to worry about all of that and we can just enjoy the trails. I think for my mind, heart and soul a short break will do me some good. So I appreciate you all, I won’t be gone long and I will most likely continue to read other posts and comment when I can. I am so happy to have this lovely coffee share group of amazing people and all other blogging friends here on WordPress. Natalie is doing an awesome job hosting and I am so thankful she took on the coffee share!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and week ahead. Stay safe and healthy!

Love,

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; End of January!

As I left my house this morning for a walk I was looking down and was positioning my walking stick in one hand and opened my front gate with the other with the cool air on my face. It was a nice 44F degrees and the sun was up above our hills shining on my back. I haven’t been walking as much as I would like, something I need to fit into my schedule. I was feeling happy to be out and as I walked I thought to myself what always makes me smile is mother nature and her wonders. Isn’t it so wonderful to enjoy all she has to give to us? I stopped in my tracks, I looked up at the sun, and then I decided to turn around and as I turned this is what I saw. Wow, majestic! this view took my breath away!

I wasn’t paying attention as I headed out the door and I turned right to walk down this road which is away from this mountain view. I was so happy I slowed down to stop as this was a great place for a photo. The blocks I walk I saw more wonderful views, but this one set me in a good mood as I took in a deep breath and went back to my walk. My walk was a bit slow as bones creaked a bit and as the sun was rising I decided to take another photo heading more along the path I was walking.

As I finished up my walk I got to thinking about how fast this month flew by. I can’t believe in about a week it will be 3 months since I started my new job. I can tell you I have never felt better sleeping every single night. (For new followers, I use to work grave yard shift full-time and had been on that shift for over 30 years!) I think I feel 30 years younger! Except for my creaking bones, a bit of arthritis in my feet and with this cold weather my right arm that I broke some years ago which has a plate and screws will ache a bit. I found some wonderful cream that helps with pain in muscles and joints that I use. So I get some relief and go about my day not thinking about it again. But when I get up in the mornings, I am a little creaky! Haha! 😀

Can I get you a refill? As I am enjoying the rest of my coffee, I just can’t stop thinking about how I am so enamored by the great outdoors. As I sit here and write on my laptop I can look out my front window and this is what I see. I can honestly say that this house we have here has some pretty cool views. I thought I should try and take a photo. So here it is!

With it being a sunny day the snow melts fast and within a few days these snow capped mountains will be no more. However, there is another storm coming this next Wednesday so the snow will return once again. I don’t think one will ever tire of the snowy mountain views! I use to live in the local mountains many moons ago. It was an experience, but am happy down in the valley with my horses.

I have been in a bit of a funk. That’s a strange word “funk” but its a good description. I am in between crochet projects and have been doing nothing but coloring. Yup, you heard me correctly ~ coloring in my adult coloring book! It is rather therapeutic to color, but it is not motivating me to start a new craft project. I’ve been wanting to make this shawl which I bought yarn to crochet but the pattern is a little complicated. I started it but got a little discouraged and stopped. I also could get back to making my crochet animals? I usually am not so distracted. I usually move from one project to another, I am hoping to find my focus soon.

Maybe I should just make these really cute crochet ponies and they will help me with my funk. Aren’t they adorable? I think I will work on these and get back to the shawl at a later date. I will share what I make once I get some of them completed. There are a whole herd of horses to create in this book, 10 to be exact. I have to thank my daughter for buying me this crochet project book. I am getting excited writing and thinking about these crochet ponies. I find working on my crochet crafts brings me much comfort and I LOVE creating things with my hands. It is so rewarding and always makes me smile. I also find the more I crochet the better I get, and so I enjoy my projects even more! What do you do that stirs your creative juices? I am sure many of you bloggers enjoy writing! I also have friends and family that love to sew. My sister’s sew quilts, so talented!!

I am going to wrap up with some kitty photos just because they make me smile. 😀

Thank you for joining me for coffee today. Sorry about being in a funk, haha, I had to use it again because it’s such a funny word. Makes me smile to think I’m in a funk! I also want to do some gardening but I want to educate myself about gardening. I have been bad about my teeny gardens which the last one was in containers. I am just winging it, buying some fertilizer and then some starters and all I do is water. I know I live in an area where I could grow some serious food if I put some effort into it, which means taking the time to read and learn how to really garden. I need to know how to take care of said garden, and be a more mindful educated gardener. Sounds great! Now just need to learn! I’ve enjoyed sharing the beautiful mountains and kitties. I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead!

Enjoying Mother Nature and furry friends!

~Diana ❤

My Weekly Smile; Jan. 28, 2021

Welcome to winter in my corner of the world. We get snow in our local mountains and it is a beautiful sight. I decided to drive to a street nearby my house to get this view. It’s rather pretty with the clouds I think. As I write this smile post I am listening to more rain as a big storm has arrived and we will get more snow in the mountains. The skiers and snow boarders will be in heaven. Where I live we have all these outdoor activities only an hour or so away from you in almost any direction in southern California. If you want to scuba dive, or surf, or go whale watching the pacific ocean is right here for all your fun-filled beach activities. If you love to ski or snowboard, the local mountains have plenty of ski slopes at many locations in the winter. The amazing thing is you can enjoy the snow by owning a cabin or renting one, and visit the wintery months without having to deal with commuting in snow or living in freezing cold weather. I grew up here so it is a great place to enjoy what ever is calling your name. I know you all know my outdoor activities, my horses. 😀

I am REALLY SMILING BIG! I have been able to ride this last week after last weeks rain storm seven days. That just amazes me as I haven’t ridden that many days in a row in years! The shortest ride lasts about 30 minutes and I rode two rides about 45 minutes. This is the whole point of having these cute ponies is to be able to ride them out on our local trails! Not only am I enjoying this immensely, but I know the horses are enjoying our rides as well. They are eager to go out and I believe are getting some really good exercise. It’s a win, win for all of us and I have been joined by my best friends at the stables for a couple of the rides I am counting. I am a lucky gal, and am thankful that I am now at a location where I have easy access to the trails so there is no excuses not to tack up and head out for a ride! ❤

I know I write a lot about my horses and I do share my rides but for this last week what was exciting was to get out there on the trails almost every single day. I mentioned that another storm is here and it will be raining all night and all day tomorrow so I won’t be able to go out again until sometime this weekend. I am so happy my horses are doing good, are in good shape and are more than happy to get out on the trails! I am smiling from ear to ear!

Thank you for visiting my smile post this week. What makes you smile? I am enjoying our weather, my horses and looking forward to working on some of my crafts with all this rain. I may pull out a gardening book I have so I can start teaching myself how to garden. I have tried a bit and posted about my teeny tiny gardens. I have been thinking I have enough room I would like to make an attempt at a bigger veggie garden this year. I want to put more effort into this and see what I can grow. I hope you have a great day in your part of the world!

Happy Trail Riding Cowgirl!

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Rain and Smiling!

Can I get you a cup of coffee? I enjoy mine with my favorite sweet Italian cream. I also have tea, hot or iced as well. I am having a nice hot cup of coffee as we have a cold storm outside and it has rained almost all day today. We are getting a ton of snow in our local mountains so when the storm blows through and the sun shines we will have beautiful snow capped mountains to admire. I am happy to see my sister and her hubby from Idaho as they are in town visiting friends and their son who lives here nearby. My sister use to own my horse Zack and I adopted him when she moved as she was unable to take him for a few reasons. One of the biggest reasons is it was in Zack’s best interest to leave him here because the stress of moving would have been hard on him because he has EPM. He is symptom free and has been after being treated five years ago. We were able to squeeze in a short trail ride this morning before the rain. It was fun to all be together again! These are my pony sister’s, two are great friends and one is my sister riding Zack. 😀

We arrived to the stables with a break in the weather. We all got the horses out and ready to go (tacked up) and asked others at the stables if they could take our photos. Lucky we did this before the ride because we rode back with it drizzling. I just got my horses back in their stalls when it really started to come down. We thankfully decided to just go on our short ride as we looked up and saw many dark clouds heading our way. What a good decision. Although we wouldn’t melt in the rain, it’s just uncomfortable to get all wet. I had a big jacket on which isn’t water proof but it takes a lot of rain to soak it through, but when riding your pants can get pretty wet especially your thighs. Haha, I have been caught out on trail and have gotten pretty wet in the past!

I’m so thankful Jane took these photos as I do not have many of me riding. Thank you Jane!! I also am enjoying these photos because you can see our faces as I am the one usually taking photos and I take them from behind so often. Haha, a lot of horses butts and the backs of my friends! It’s the best I can do so many times out on the trails. These photos just make me SMILE! We will go out again tomorrow as this storm is suppose to be gone by tomorrow morning. There are more storms on the way with some pretty chilly nights. We are at 44F tonight with it dropping down to the 30F’s Monday night. With this cold front the snow levels are down near 2000ft in the local mountains so some of the high deserts are getting snow as well. With such a low snow level the mountains will just be blanketed ~ I know I’ve mentioned this already. It’s just such a beautiful sight! I can’t think of a good segue to the next couple of photos I wanted to share so I’ll just say kitties and grandkids!

My son so kindly sends us these funny photos of these two brothers. They are quite the characters and as you can see love each others company. I have shared many photos of them throughout my posts and this was the latest photo. They are so beautiful and they make me smile. This beautiful black kitty my daughter adopted about a week ago which I shared last week. She finally decided on a name “Evie” which is the name of a character from the movie V for Vendetta. My son said that there is a Pokemon name Eevee (which is how you say “Evie”) and the whole family agreed it is a great name for her! When we asked my daughter how she is settling in, my daughter replied “She’s doing good, but she thinks she owns the place!” Haha, “She does own the place don’t you know?” I replied. Cats, if you’ve ever owned one I think its they own you! Dogs are the other way around and love them too!

I’ll end with saying I’m missing my grand children and thought I’d share as the last few weeks I’ve just been a bit homesick for them. That’s just the best way to explain it when you miss family. I’ll be able to visit them soon enough (I hope) but as I will never get tired of saying, I am so thankful for technology and the instant sharing and video chats. ❤

Thank you so much for visiting my coffee share today. I enjoyed sharing my weekend and even though I have stopped and wondered if all I am doing is repeating one weekend to the next, the stories I share are often woven with different events and I sometimes get lucky to share some fun photos. I hope you all are safe and sound and enjoying your weekend. For us here, winter is truly here bringing in the much needed rain and cold weather. If you would like to read other coffee shares, the link is here. And thank you Natalie for hosting our gatherings.

Happy Cowgirl Grandma,

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; As The Wind Blows!

How is your weekend going so far? I can’t believe it’s Saturday and it’s late afternoon. I am actually drinking some ice tea because it is a warm January day. It was 86F today and very windy. We get winds here called Santa Ana winds. These winds originate inland and affects coastal Southern California where I live. I thought I would try and get in a ride this morning before the wind was to pick up. I didn’t succeed as the wind blew us down the trail but I am so proud of my ponies today! I thought it not a safe idea to video my ride, but before the wind really kicked in I did take a couple of photos. 😀

As I head down this block, the wind was reasonable and just gusty. I thought I could head down this way which made my ride twice as long before the wind would get stronger. I checked the weather app earlier in the morning or was it last night? And the wind by late-morning was to be around 12 miles per hour, or so I thought and I thought I had plenty of time. Little did I know that within the next 15 minutes or so the winds were going to pick up. You can’t really see the end to the road ahead, but it turns where you see the mountain rise in the background past Chloe’s ears in the photo to the right and as we headed down the turn to the start of the next block home the gusts turned into 18 to 20 mile per hour sustained winds, with stronger gusts! We had to cross the street and as we walked this next block home with what felt like howling winds which were very warm, my ponies just walked along like another day on the trails. I am so very thankful for their steadfastness.

They didn’t seem to blink an eye to the wind, and I am thankful these strong winds were not blowing any debris, lose tree limbs or trash which can all spook even the steadiest horse. As I made it up to the last block and street to the stables I could feel Chloe increase her pace. Yes girl, I know you want to get home and I did too! I did not plan on riding in this rip roaring wind! I think I would rather get caught out in the rain! As I arrived at the barn the other ladies that own horses there were all saying, boy are you brave! Haha, I didn’t plan on this I said. It really wasn’t that windy when I left and I was gone all of 45 minutes! CRAZY WEATHER!

I am giggling sharing these photos as my good friend Jane was sitting nearby as we chatted and Zack just would not stop begging. Haha, he just would not stop with his goofy sideway looks! His way of begging for something please! I thought why not take more photos. Oh my, I have so many photos of these ponies, I never tire of them and love to share. I am so very thankful I can ride them on the trails as they age and they are a bonded pair. I think Chloe would be fine without Zack, but Chloe is Zack’s best girlfriend and where ever Chloe goes, Zack goes too! It just is, what it is!

Can I get you a refill? As I sit and think about this last week I was feeling rather emotional. I know that is normal right? There are many reasons for these emotions, missing my family in Arizona ~ so much so I am going to try and visit in a few weeks if possible. I am hoping to visit there in February because my grandson will be turning one near the end of Feb. Wait what? I can’t believe it and I am so excited about baby Teddy’s birthday as this year has gone by fast and am so sad it has been near impossible to spend time with my grandchildren. No wonder I am so emotional. I am also saddened by all affected by the virus. We have employees out and some in the hospital. I am now getting tested weekly. I just checked and I am negative, so thankful as I continue to be needed at work filling in holes of absenteeism. This next week I will go in early and stay late, thankful I get paid over-time now. I think it will just be for this next week, hoping things get better soon.

As we all deal with all these changes and I have read of others affected by more lockdowns in their area, or mask wearing where they hadn’t been but now it is deemed necessary. I am thinking maybe sharing and writing about this is somehow cathartic. So, I’ll say it here to stay safe and stay strong. We will all make it through these crazy times and all we can do is take one day at a time. I am glad to see vaccines rolling out even though it will take time for this to become effective especially since there are booster shots involved. Some how I feel better expressing my feelings on this subject, so thanks for listening. On to happier news…

I do have some really happy news and that is my daughter adopted a kitty last week. If you were to read through my blogs (or have been a follower) my daughter once owned one of the brother kitties that I share that both now live with my son in Arizona. Wolfie was such a handful (that is an understatement) and one of the biggest problems is he would not stop eating the Guinea Pigs hay and so he would upset his stomach and she ended up at the vet so many times that she decided to give him up. So, off to his brothers house he went. (That’s her brother and Wolfie’s brother, Haha!) It has been one year now, and she found this beautiful black kitty that is about a year and a half old. She hasn’t decided on a name, but she is sweet and calm. Here is a photo. 😀

Thanks for visiting and having coffee with me today. The link up you can find here, and thank you Natalie for hosting the coffee share. ❤

Happy crazy trail riding Grandma,

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Begin Anew

Welcome to my coffee share and before I get started I want to thank our new host Natalie the Explorer for hosting our coffee share gatherings on WordPress. I share my blog posts on another social media so those people would not really know what I am talking about if I don’t explain that this is linked to other coffee shares within WP. Anyways, I am enjoying a nice cup of coffee can I get you a cup too? I bought a new cup at a small farm in San Luis Obispo, we call it SLO for short. It’s a neat little farm where you can buy lettuce to feed goats, and they have chickens a couple of cows and two ponies. They have a store where they have lots of fresh produce grown on the farm and fresh eggs, and lots of jarred items, jams, chutneys etc. It is fun to visit there and this time I decided to buy this coffee mug because it was so pretty. Can I get you a biscuit or english muffin with your coffee? I have hot tea and ice tea too!

As I write this I am thinking back and I wanted to write during the week this last week but it started out really busy. My work is extremely short handed as positive Covid cases has hit the night shift and in numbers. We have at least 8 positive cases and other’s out because they were near a positive person, a protocol our work has put in place to help stop the spread. Per state protocols the remaining employees are to be tested which my work set up this last week and we all were tested. My test came back negative. As they clean and we all take precautions they do have an action plan if the spread gets worse as we are dwindling in numbers. But as the weeks pass hopefully those sick will recover and return to work. I don’t talk much about the virus, but since it is spreading and reaching closer it is affecting my schedule and so I thought I would share. Last week I worked earlier 11a – 7:30p. I will work this schedule one more week and then hopefully go back to 2p – 10:30p.

Either way the earlier schedule isn’t all that bad as I am still able to go to the barn before work. I live so close to the barn (it’s just a mile away) that I can get there and ride and return home, change clothes and am off to work. I have some photos of my ride this week. I actually was able to ride 3 times but only took photos on one of my rides. What I noticed when I rode at 9:30am is the morning shadows as I rounded the block. So these are my shadow photos! I just LOVE them! 😀

The mornings have been crisp and cool. Usually in the 50’s(F) and beautiful sunshine. I finally got to my day off and it was super windy! Darn it all, it was too windy to ride. But I will be able to ride tomorrow and am hooking up with my best friend who is now leasing a horse at my stables. Tomorrow will be our first ride together on her leased horse which I am really looking forward too. We haven’t been able to visit as often and so we will be able to chat and catch up with our lives during our ride. It will be great FUN!

I wanted to look at this year anew, the dictionary describes anew ~ in a new or different and typically more positive way. I think we all need to look at this year we have started anew. My ideas are thinking positively towards the world and each other. I just need more positivity which I try and have each day as each of us take care of ourselves and our loved ones. I have furry loved ones as well that need my time and attention. So I am thinking my word for this year is ANEW ~ I do not usually have a word for the year, but I think I will have one for this year!

Thank you for visiting my coffee share. I hope you all are safe and sound and I enjoyed sharing with you my happenings. I wish you could go on the trail with me, as the weather here has been just fantastic this time of year (other than the wind). I have a kitty near me and was on my lap earlier so I will close with one of my pretty kitties. I hope you all have a great rest of the weekend and a good week ahead!

Shadow Loving Cowgirl,

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; New Year, 2021!

Can I get you a cup of coffee or tea? as we sit and enjoy this first weekend of this new decade. In this crazy world we are living in today, I have to keep my head grounded and enjoy my family, togetherness, good food and great company. We keep the company very small, my bubble is not that big as we try and stay safe. As I sit here writing my daughter is making us dinner and the smell is amazing. As she is browning onions and bell pepper the kitchen is filled with such wonderful aroma as she teases the guys (my son and hubby) this will be a vegetarian dinner. They will love it as she is a wonderful cook. It will be a “meat” and potatoes dinner only the meat will be made with lentils, mushrooms and quinoa. She made vegan pancakes this morning without any eggs! What? and they were delicious. They were banana with mini chocolate chips, yummy! I am so happy she loves to cook, and she has so many cookbooks she has often told me she gets lost in recipes. Haha, that can happen when you have too many to choose from. As I am sitting here thinking about food, I wanted to share what we did today. Oh wait, I forgot to tell you we drove up to my daughter’s to spend the New Year weekend with her up North.

We got there early today Jan. 1st and there were not a lot of people so the shops and eatery’s were not crowded. As the day wore on, more and more people filled the streets. My family and I were happy to be on our way to avoid the crowds. I will say it really wasn’t that crowded, but definitely more people than when we arrived. While we were there we bought lunch at a take out place and my better half and I had bratwurst sausage with sauerkraut and it was one of the best brat’s I’ve ever had! (We clearly aren’t vegan, but support my daughter and I should really eat a plant based diet. Not such an easy change to make, so I try and eat healthier every day.) My son had cheddar and bacon sausage and my daughter had a huge Bavarian pretzel with cheese. 😀

I am writing my coffee share in the middle of my weekend away and so I will probably post an after weekend smile post next week as we are going to Pismo Beach tomorrow morning and we will have the best cinnamon rolls I have ever had at this famous cinnamon roll place in Pismo. AND it is just one or two streets from the Pacific Ocean! I have shared our cinnamon rolls from there in previous posts when I have visited here but my hubby has not been there yet as I often come to my daughter’s with just my son. My husband works every weekend, so I have traveled more with my son or by myself than with my husband. We asked him to take this weekend off and to be honest I have been trying to get him to retire. We will see if this will be his last year or last few months. He only works 2 days a week and has been doing this same job for the last 10 years. So he hasn’t had weekends off in that long. Only rarely when we decide to travel or make a special weekend vacation is he off of work. I digress, it will be so fun and special to eat our cinnamon rolls on the pier in Pismo and smell the ocean and watch the waves. The seagulls or pigeons will be nearby begging! Can I get you another cup of Joe? or more tea?

As I wrap up this evening so I can get this posted I will tell you that the dinner we were smelling as I started this post was absolutely delicious. Here is a photo of the finished product! My hubby is from the south and his Mom from Arkansas and as it goes all or most southerners eat black-eyed peas to bring good luck to the New Year. So for the last 36 years we have made black-eyed peas with our New Year dinner. My daughter found a really good recipe as they tasted great. Everything on the plate was super tasty!

Here’s to a Happy, Lucky, Prosperous New Year!

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Dec. 27, 2020

As I sit here coloring my adult coloring book I am reminiscing about Christmas as I relax and enjoy this gift. I have to tell you that my artsy crafty side of my brain is completely addicted to this coloring book! This isn’t my first one, I am not sure where my other coloring book is but this one has cool sayings and quotes. I am enjoying it immensely! I’ll share a page and you can color too! Haha, you will find it very addicting. I am coloring away thinking I really wanted to share coffee with you today and share the happenings of my Christmas weekend. So I will set it aside for now, and I’ll share what I’ve colored so far.

My daughter is on her way home up North and we had a great time together with my son and my hubby. We video chatted with my family in Arizona as we opened gifts that we sent each other. We did a secret Santa (website) so that it would pick names so that we could buy each other gifts to make Christmas a little easier. We use this website where we can share our wish lists, which sure comes in handy and makes shopping so much easier. It was great fun opening up gifts together (video chat) and catching up and seeing those beautiful grand kids!

I told my daughter I wanted to try and have a Swedish dinner for Christmas. It wasn’t exactly authentic as we made everything vegan. We made Swedish meatballs using frozen vegan meatballs which heated up super fast. I found the recipe for the IKEA Swedish meatball sauce, and I may have made more sauce to meatball ratio, which is okay in my book and YUMMY! My daughter made homemade Swedish Cardamom bread, and even though we may have over-proofed it (I think that was our mistake?) It turned out delicious! We made a Swedish Potato casserole and a Swedish beet and apple salad. Dessert was pumpkin cheesecake bars. It was so fun cooking with my daughter! ❤ We started baking/cooking at 3:30pm and didn’t stop until we sat to eat at 7:30pm Christmas day. Cooking from scratch takes a lot of time! BUT WORTH IT! Now I need to find the energy to make soup for dinner tonight! Haha 😀

The cardamom bread was so delicious. It is a little sweet and I just LOVE the taste of cardamom. We were struggling with timing everything as I only have the one oven and since we didn’t meal plan or plan out the timing of everything, unfortunately we think the bread sat too long before we could get it into the oven to bake. Being a yeast bread, that can make a huge difference. It was still very soft and tasted wonderful but was slightly dense in the middle and that bigger loaf a little under done in the center, but just barely. It sure smelled good while baking! All the food tasted wonderful and how can it not when it is made with Love! ❤

We decided to go out for a hike as my daughter is always inspiring me trying to fit in exercise where we can. We had a bit of winter weather which brought rain which clears the air and the next day was beautiful! My daughter wanted to hike to Pumpkin Rock which is a huge boulder at the top of this hill in our town. The locals here keep pumpkin rock painted, as it will get a bit of graffiti and/or fade over time. I just googled it and it is there as Pumpkin Rock Trail Loop which is 1.7 miles long. Sounds just about right! Here are some photos from our hike.

We had a blast on our hike up and down on Pumpkin Rock Trails. As we were leaving the rock and started back down we were laughing at our shadows. We just had to take photos and I thought it would be fun to share. I didn’t take my phone so I didn’t have my camera and my son did a great job with all the photos I am sharing with you. We could not have picked a better day to hike, only 65F such a beautiful, gorgeous day. I will say that as I am sharing with you this last weekend of reminiscing, I am realizing that we didn’t take any photos of present opening. I usually always take photos of at least one gift each person opens, oh well, it was a fun day even though I didn’t digitally record it and it goes with this rather strange year.

Thanks for having coffee with me today. I forgot to ask you for a refill but I just get going on and on about things so I apologize for my lack of hospitality. I do enjoy our visits and hope you enjoyed your holiday however you were able to celebrate!

Happy Christmas Weekend!

Love, Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; A Week before Christmas!

I am enjoying a nice hot cup of coffee with my favorite creamer, sweet Italian cream. Would you like coffee or a cup of tea? Maybe ice tea for those enjoying summer right now? I can’t believe in less than a week it is Christmas! WOW! This month is flying by at record speed. I am in a happy place getting most of my shopping done and I even managed to mail out some Christmas cards. I only receive a handful these days and they are fun to receive. I have some nice cards I was gifted from my daughter (ones she bought and never mailed) that I used. I enjoyed sending the cards, fun to write a little something and send on their way. I have friends/family that do the photo’s as Christmas cards which are so special and I love to receive each year. Maybe one of these years I’ll do the photo cards!

I was hoping to get more fingerless mittens made and I already have given a few away as gifts. I have a lot of yarn so I can make a bunch of them and I think will sell at the local craft fair. Or, I can really get my act together, keep stitching and have them all ready to mail out to family next Christmas. I will share what I have completed so far.

I forgot to offer you something to go along with your coffee? I have some fresh bananas, just thinking healthy as I am planning on baking cookies next weekend. I can’t bring cookies or baked items to work as they don’t want any food sharing. Understandable, so I thought I would wait and bake with my daughter when she arrives for Christmas. I really want to bake sugar cookies, maybe some different flavored ones and get creative. I’ve been watching a lot of baking challenge shows and one of them is the Christmas Cookie Challenges and they make cookies that have all that elaborate icing. I have a bunch of horse cookie cutters and I thought it would be fun to decorate them and then hand them out to the ladies at the stables. I am a complete neophyte to Christmas decorating on this scale. I watch them as they make a border, then flood the cookies, then decorate wet on wet. Just some of the terms I see them do as I watch some amazing decorating!

It looks like great fun and I thought what better way to practice but on horse sugar cookies! Maybe I will make some lemon sugar cookies or cinnamon (like snickerdoodles) pecan sounds good too. I could make chocolate cookies for the darker shades for the horses. Oh I have so many ideas! Haha, I am getting excited to bake!! I can’t think of a good segue into my next subject which I am so passionate about and I have some new photos (I have so many photos on my phone, it’s just crazy!) but I feel like documenting these beautiful horses as they age and fill my days with so much joy and pleasure. I don’t have many photos of them in the small pasture they have at the barn. They enjoy being out together so I thought I would share! 😀

Today was farrier day, they needed their hoofs trimmed. At one time they both wore horse shoes, but not any more. With their age and arthritis issues there is no need to have horse shoes. Instead of shoes, Zack has trail boots I put on if needed. Chloe’s leg issues are so bad that the farrier can’t pick up her right back leg. She has an old injury (broken stifle, it is a hairline fracture that is healed and lots of scar tissue has formed). It truly is amazing Chloe gets around as well as she does. She is lucky to be alive, as there is no way she would survive surgery on that huge joint as she is a big girl. (The stifle of a horse is equivalent to our knees, so this is her knee joint. A devastating injury, but she protects that leg and is thriving.) Anyways, it was a great day at the stables, beautiful sunny warm day! Here is a few more photos!

My horses, which I love to call “my ponies” live up in the barn. These were the only open stalls and I am actually really liking them because I know they are sheltered from the wind and rain. Some of the horses at this stables are nervous being up in the pasture because it is away from the paddocks. I’m so thankful Zack and Chloe do really well up in the small pasture since their stalls are nearby. My horses live across from each other way up where the aisle starts on this pretty red barn! My ponies are out in the pasture when I took the photo. You can make out a white horse Zack and Chloe is there but she is hard to see! She is standing at the gate if you click on photo and zoom in. Haha!

Thanks for having coffee with me today and I will end with one last Christmas photo. The tree we bought has lights that change colors, so I took another photo with the colored lights! So pretty! I hope you all have a wonderful, beautiful Christmas! I know many, many zoom and video chats will be held to keep us as close as we can be with family! ❤ ❤ ❤

Enjoying the holidays, Cowgirl loving Grandma!

~Diana ❤

Thank you Eclecticalli for hosting our coffee share link up! Click here to visit!

Weekend Coffee Share; Early December Fun!

Welcome, can I get you a hot cup of Joe? or hot tea? I have hot cocoa too, and some mini marshmallows for the top. It’s been so chilly but I know not as cold as some places. My sister just texted me today and she is in Colorado and she said it is really cold there at 18F, brrr….. And I was complaining yesterday at 55F. I had three layers on and my hands were freezing. I did not ride yesterday but had fun visiting my bestfriend with Gracie who is now two stables down from where I board my horses. I don’t see her every day any more so it was fun to catch up with her and I spent the morning there and then tended to my horses. Gracie has settled into her new home and now has some new neighbors, horse neighbors that is and so it goes as we move into a new chapter with our horses. As Gracie is now officially retired, I am not at that point yet with my horses so I am able to ride out on the trails with other stable friends or as we fondly call each other pony sister’s! 😀

This morning when I woke up the sun was shining brightly and the gloomy clouds were all blown away. I was excited and finally went out on my walk. It is amazing how good that feels to get out and walk. It got my blood flowing and I was feeling warmed up and ready to start my day. Today I was able to get out there on the trails and I rode with another good friend, Jane. We had a wonderful ride together.

Since my ponies are serviceably sound (that means they have some issues where they may limp or have some pain which we control with pain meds, but they are still rideable and exercise is really good for many arthritic older horses.) I usually do not go out on the trail for more than an hour. We have a short trail loop that is just about 25 minutes depending on their walking speed. Today we went longer which was a perfect 45 minutes and Jane took some photos of our ride. I’m so happy she thought of taking some photos which isn’t always easy on the trail! Haha, she had to do selfie mode and try and find me behind her!

The trails we ride on are well groomed and run through a newer housing track. All the houses here are horse property houses. Usually the trail is only on one side of the street as you can see in the photo. We are in a hilly area so if you wanted to get your horse in shape there are many hills to go up and down and the views are gorgeous. However, my horses are past their prime and like I already mentioned with their leg issues steep hill riding is not possible or not really fair to them.

We can do small inclines with no problem as it’s impossible to avoid some up and down in the course of our rides. There are some pretty flat blocks, and so I break it up and will do some very small hills one day and do flat riding blocks another. The really steep hills are left for the younger, sounder horses. I asked Jane for a recent favorite photo that she took so that I could share on my blog and she sent me this next one. Great choice Jane! It is BEAUTIFUL! 😀

I thought this was at a golf course at first, but as Jane and I chatted she explained where she took this photo which was at the top of one of those steep hills in this pretty area. This is just a front yard and I love the vibrant colors with the beautiful sky, such a wonderful day out horse back riding! She rides more often than not by herself. I am so thankful when I can join her ride. We are so truly blessed to have all these wonderful trails right outside the front gate!

Can I get you a refill? I have a few giant ginger cookies to finish up and you can have one too! I want to thank you for visiting today as we wrap up this weekend. I am getting ready to go shopping as I want to finish up the Christmas gifts list. I am waiting for a package to arrive I ordered online and after my shopping today I will put a box together for my family in Arizona. We will video chat on Christmas day and watch each other open our secret Santa gifts we do each year, and the gifts sent for grand children!

I better get this published! I can’t believe this weekend is just about over. I hope you all have a great week ahead. Maybe next week I can actually complete my weekend coffee share as the weekend starts, instead of when it is ending. 😀

Happy riding these pretty horses!

~Diana ❤

Weekend Coffee Share; Sunday Dec. 6th

I have been baking brownies, chocolate chip cookies and some giant ginger cookies this evening! All go well with a nice hot cup of coffee and I made mine decaf since its the evening for me now. I can’t believe how fast these weeks are flying by as I had started a coffee share last weekend and only had written a sentence or two and was unable to finish. I ended up deleting that one and started all over again for this weekend. I am really loving my new schedule but I will say for some reason I am finding it difficult to etch out time for my writing. I am trying to keep up with my reading which includes many, many blogs that I follow. I don’t want to get discouraged, so I will do what I can when I can if that makes any sense!

As I assess the last month I will say that I am feeling very happy with my decision to change jobs to a day shift position at another lab. The hours are actually swing shift which is even better. I am now feeling really needed at my new job becoming an asset as I hoped I would be with all my knowledge and experience. I plan on writing a blog post about my job and all that I do there which will include some job history too. I have read a few other bloggers that have shared and it is fun to read what ya’ll do for a living and how you got there! I thought I would give it a shot and am hoping I can get that completed by end of this next week. How is your coffee? need a refill? I have been keeping busy with Christmas decorating, horse back riding and of course my crochet. I have lots of photos I like to share!

My cute little tree topper looks completely adorable up on the top of our Christmas tree. My son thought I was nuts when I picked it up at the last store we were at and I thought this will work great! He looks so proud standing at the top of our tree. We bought a smaller tree than our old Christmas tree. Our old one was probably 18 years old and it was getting harder and harder to put together. We really don’t need such a big tree and now they make them with lights already on the tree. That’s what we bought and it is so pretty. I just have a lot of homey ornaments and decorate simply so my little bird fits right in. I have a big star that is just too heavy for the top of this tree which fit fine on our old big tree. Haha, I am going on and on about all this and I must say this year is just full of changes, new job, new Christmas tree, we even bought a new (used) car! I think I could write a novel about all the changes. Maybe I will write a separate blog post about all the changes our family has had for this year because its been more than any “normal” year!

I am working on my third set of fingerless mittens. They crochet together pretty fast and I almost have the pattern memorized. I am planning on sending them off as Christmas presents so I will continue onward. The one pictured is actually a blue grey, looks grey to me in this photo. I have a dark green yarn, brown and burgundy red. I will take more photos when I get more done. Super fun to make and are perfect for a little warmth in our mild winters. I find my crochet projects very therapeutic as I love creating things and this medium provides incredible colors and I love watching my work come to life! Whether it be a mitten, a scarf, a nice warm hat to a crocheted farm animal, Star Wars figure or a potted cactus. I have so much to work on and I find myself so excited to come home and get my projects going. I must say I am rather addicted to these fingerless mittens. I am not sure why, I just think they are useful and pretty! I can’t think of a good segway to the next subject, can I get you more cookies? a coffee or tea refill? We are now heading to the stables!

What a beautiful day for a trail ride and as we (my horses and I) were heading down the trail the sunlight was shimmering off the tops of all the palm trees. It really was magical and I was just taking in the day and enjoying every minute of my ride. I tried to get a photo of the sparkles but of course it is difficult without a good camera with a zoom lens. I decided to include the photo anyways, just because it is worth remembering this beautiful day! I like how bright the sun is in the corner of the photo, and it was a pleasant 65 degrees today. I can’t complain at all. It was a fun day at the barn with my ponies Chloe and Zack. ❤

Thanks for sharing coffee with me and I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. Looking forward to this next week trying to keep up with all the busyness this holiday season brings. I really want to send Christmas cards to my friends and family this year. I use to do this and I think this year would be a good year to get those cards out and mail them. I love the holiday’s and I am so happy we got our decorations up right after Thanksgiving this year. We had to make some changes with the new tree and all but totally worth it! Happy week ahead!

Busy, Sparkling Cowgirl,

~Diana ❤

P.S. The ship’s are the Millennium Falcon and the Enterprise!