Ice

I’m trying to be positive about ice. I’m trying to find something good to say about icy weather. So here are my thoughts….

I love ice in my drinks. Whether its summer time or winter, I like ice in my drinks. I LOVE ice cream

Icy weather brings more togetherness in our family. No one is rushing out the door during icy cold weather. We snuggle more. We cook more. We play more games. We talk more. We go out less which means we spend less.

Icy weather is great! What do you do during bad weather that you normally don’t do when the weather is bright, sunny, and warm?

A Drive Through Mississinewa Reservoir

A drive through Mississinewa Reservoir in Indiana and we discovered some beautiful scenery and photographic opportunities. The road looked more treacherous than what it was. This was a pretty nice quiet drive with no traffic and other people in sight. No radio to distract our thoughts, just us and nature.

 

1 Reservoir Road

It’s amazing what you can see and notice if you just sit still long enough or drive slowly enough. The two animals that caught my attention were the bald eagle and an adorable raccoon. I was able to capture a few shots of each. Warning: they are a bit blurred. I believe the eagles we did see were aware we were there and watching. The one perched higher up and through the branches kept turning his head back and forth as if he/she knew we were there.

The raccoon was adorable, I’m not sure if this was a small one or large one as half the body was hidden. These little adorable creatures are destructive if they get into an abandoned building or say a house that is left unattended while you travel through China. However, perched up on the tree, he does look harmless and cute.

1 Raccoon

2 Raccoon

 

What else did I discover? I discovered I need a new lens. The Nikon 70-300MM F/4.5-5.6G VR sounds like the next step. If you have other suggestions, please let me know as I am just learning and love the hobby.

Have a wonderful day. Be still and enjoy some quiet time and solitude, be one with nature and yourself. Hugs!

 

A Frosty and A Spoon

If you know me, you know that I’m always, always taking snap shots. Whether it’s with my iPhone, point and shoot, or the Nikon, I’m forever taking a photo. At times this can become rather annoying for the subjects. If you ask my husband, he would say, “my wife can be f*kn annoying with her incessant photo taking”. He says this with a smile and lots of love, in a humorous kind of way. I’m sure that’s what he means.

Today, we decided to treat ourselves to an unhealthy snack, a Wendy’s frosty. So what made me take a photo? Right before Mike took a seat he reached behind him and whips out his spoon. In a deep voice he says, “I’ve come prepared.” A commercial moment if you will. This was a spoon from home. He was indeed prepared!

We sit down to enjoy our snack and I (of course) thought the moment was worthy of a snap shot. I mean really, how many people do you know carry their own spoon? So, I take my iPhone out and snap a quick one. Oh, but not before he could wipe the expression off his face, ha! When I looked at the photo on my phone I questioned his expression. His response, “how would you like it if I took a picture of you every time you fart?” Oh my gosh, I couldn’t believe he said this in public and with an older gentleman sitting right behind us. I was stunned, but only for a few seconds. All of a sudden it hit me and I burst into a boisterous laughing fit. I cried. I found it so funny. Even now I’m laughing.

After a few minutes the gentleman behind us gets up to leave but not before he says to us, “you know there is a study that laughing can cure many types of diseases.” Awe.. he had enjoyed my laugh as he was also smiling. I hope that was it and not that he heard my husband say he was taking a picture of me every time I fart. Oh dear heavens.

IMG_5154Yes it’s true, I take way too many pictures. But you know, I seriously love to freeze moments with my pictures. I love it! Mike and I, we are two peas in a pod, we love and laugh with each other all the time. We lovingly poke fun at each other all the time. I love this husband of mine. I especially love that he loves my idiosyncrasy’s.

Eclectic Shoppe, Wabash, Indiana

What’s that you ask? It’s our new shop name minus the city and state of course, Eclectic Shoppe. We are so excited to be working on a brick and mortar place, a labor of love and passion.

This is the banner on our Facebook Page.

This is the banner on our Facebook Page.

The shop should come to fruition sometime at the beginning of April. Due to my constant indecisiveness, we are now forced to push back our grand opening. That’s ok though, a well thought out plan sometimes has wrinkles, right? Ha!

Eclectic Shoppe will feature Art, vintage and modern decor, accessories, and gifts (gifts are due in early summer). We’ve signed with artist of different genres and medias. From canvas, wood, re-cycled & up-cycled goods, to vintage and modern decor pieces. The beauty of our shop, is that all the vintage and modern decor pieces are hand selected by Alex and I. We want to mix the media up, mix and mingle pieces together. Not necessarily to match, but to show what the possibilities could be. This is such an exciting time for us and it is wonderful to work with my daughters on such a project.

The first thing I want to share are the floors. 

The floors are done and they have turned out beautifully. The original floors had carpet and while it looked great, I wanted to uncover and restore the beautiful flooring underneath. Do you like wood floors or rugs? I think a few area rugs might work out really well in this space. What do you think? 

There was old tile work in this section. We've had a local company remove that tile and now we are waiting on, "me", of course, because I have not picked out the tile.  :)

There was old tile work in this section. We’ve had a local company remove that tile and now we are waiting on, “me”, of course, because I have not picked out the tile. 🙂

This is what the floors looked like before the re-finishing started.

This is what the floors looked like before the re-finishing started.

This is after all the glue has been removed and the floors have been sanded. We could see the promise of beauty to come.

This is after all the glue has been removed and the floors have been sanded. We could see the promise of beauty to come.

Oh what a smell that was, but just look at the beauty that was uncovered. A diamond in the rough... I'm in love with my floor.

Oh what a smell that was, but just look at the beauty that was uncovered. A diamond in the rough… I’m in love with my floor.

What’s next?

At this time we are accepting new artisan work. Inquiries should be emailed to 42Eclectic@gmail.com . Thank you.

Changing Our Name, Sort of….

I woke up this morning in a blah mood and no inspiration what so ever. After speaking with my husband, I was so inspired, I decided to do something with my blog. Perfect timing I’d say since the assignment from The Daily Post, Michelle W., says, “Say Your Name.”

My blog has been in a rut lately. There has been so much, and I do mean SO MUCH, going on in our lives that I’ve neglected my blog. I personally love to blog; although, you wouldn’t think so from the lack of activity.

My first post in the boosting direction is to change the title and tag line. I’ve decided to go with Still Times – Capturing Glimpses of Times With Words & Photographs and a tag line reading, “Because everyday should be filled with laughter, joy, tears, and a sense of fulfillment.”

Why the name? Well, that’s me, I try to be positive and look at the positive or beauty of all things and people. I’ve always tried to post with a good attitude. I’ve failed at times; however, for the most part, I feel I do a good job of posting with a joyful heart. I love laughter, I feel as if when I laugh, I am in a way cleansing myself of bad thoughts or impurities of the heart. The joy and tears go hand in hand for me, I can laugh and cry at the same time for both good and bad reasons. I’m a sympathetic crier and will cry when I see someone crying (not kids though). At the end of the day, I like to feel a sense of fulfillment or accomplishment. My to-do-list grows faster than what I cross of as completed, but every check-mark I make is an accomplishment.

Why the change? We’ve moved from China to the great USA! We are living in Indiana for now. I’ll write more on this soon. Although, I’ll still post about China as I have an archive full of wonderful photos to share. My Indiana canvas is empty; but, I’ll soon change that as well. Untitled

The year has started out rough and so very busy. I’ll be sharing soon all the changes we’ve made in our family. It’s a journey for sure…. Cheers to you!

Catchy Advertising –

Ever see a billboard, sign, or an advertisement that stops you dead in your tracks? What would be your reaction to this advertisement and these types of gifts?

Enjoy!

We’re Back In China

We had an amazing time in the good ol’ USA! Thirty one days was not nearly enough time to take off our shoes and relax. We worked hard while in the states with helping our daughter with her shop and working at the farm house getting it ready to sell. Life was busy and interesting. Don’t let me kid you though, we loved every minute of it.

Our only regret about our fantastic 31 days in the USA was the lack of time to spend with family and friends. We didn’t have time, ugh! Our time was literally full of working time in both Michigan and Indiana.

Our fantastic summer continues with our trip back to China where we reunited after only a short week (although it felt like a year) away from my wonderful husband Mike.

The advantage of returning to Luxu, China: The great Chinese food. The disadvantage of returning to China: The incredible HOT heat.

I’m out of space on wordpress to insert photo’s. As soon as I figure it out I’ll add photo’s. Much love to all.

Maria