Saturday, December 31, 2011

Baby Graham - December 22, 2011

Our long awaited first grandson has arrived. Graham Nelo Carson, 8lbs 8oz, 
born 12/22/2011 at Presbyterian Hospital in Rockwall Texas.

And the Proud Parents...
Mandy Zieleniewski & Barry Carson

And more Baby Graham...

The sweetest Christmas present ever!

Pierogi making with Anna

Our Christmas tradition of making Pierogi on Christmas Eve didn't happen this year. Mandy was expecting baby Graham and so we were a little distracted with baby happenings. Six days later, Anna finally talked me into at least making one flavor of Pierogi and so our Apple Pierogi happened. :) Yayee! My husband and Anna couldn't be happier. Why? I honestly have no idea why these Polish family members of mine love Pierogi so much, but love them they do.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Just a Wednesday

Had lunch with two handsome young men today; my son Jacob and his friend Jonathan. I enjoyed listening to them talk about their Coast Guard plans, living in Tyler and just stuff. I love being a mom and getting to be part of all of my adult kid's lives. I am blessed.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Start of School

Yesterday was the first day of Anna's classes at The Zenith Academy. She's taking three classes; Computer Programming, Creative Writing and an Apologia Science class. She will only be going on Tuesday and Thursdays for instruction and labs. The rest of her subjects and class homework we'll be doing at home. I'm really excited for her. She's being brave and stepping out of her comfort zone to try new things this year. I hope this will be a fun and inspiring year for both of us as we tackle her first year of high school together.

I saw this somewhere on the internet, wish I could give it the proper credit it deserves. The person who created it and I are in total agreement. :) I am so glad I have and had the opportunity to homeschool all our our kids. What a gift it has been to spend the amount of time I did and still do with each of them. Yezzz... After all the hours together, I'm still crazy about ALL of them!

I do want to point out that I don't homeschool because of the badness of schools, although our particular school district (Quinlan ISD) IS bad. I think home is the greatest base for exploring the world we live in, spending time on personal interests and being able to be attentive to how each person learns. Homeschooling isn't always about learning everything at home. My job is also to delegate teaching to others, but it's always the path I feel is best, not the one someone else put together for the masses.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

This mornings surprise!

This morning while I was about to water my thirsty yard, I heard the weirdest noise overhead. I looked up just in time to see a small flock of crane type birds circling overhead. They were looking for a spot to land on our neighbor's (the Kirby's) pond. They weren't birds I was familiar with and for sure I have never heard anything like them before. I grabbed my camera and quietly crept over to get a better look.

Click on the picture to get a better look.
Aren't they beautiful? They are Black-bellied Whistling Ducks. They really whistle too.
I haven't heard them quack at all. Is it a duck if it can't quack?  ;) 

Saturday, August 6, 2011


Life is pretty good right now. Even with so many things feeling like a train wreck lately, I still feel God's peace when I focus on Him instead of me and the craziness of my life. And life has been crazy in the Z household this summer, so I need to work harder at focusing on Him!

Too much has happened this summer to give everything it's proper credit. Let's just say, my plans for the summer didn't happen. With some of my wrong decisions, interruptions, accidents and just plain ole, LIFE carrying on its merry ole way; the summer of 2011 has been hard. Hard is not my favorite thing to deal with. I'm better with things going my way. Somehow, I'm always reminded (by myself, Him & One of Max Lucado's books), that life isn't all about me, so suck it up and move on. I would really like to remind others of this piece of advice, but again I'm reminded... life isn't all about me.

On the brighter side, my daughter Mandy is expecting her first baby in December and making us first time grand parents. Abby moved back home, still going to college, working and getting the best tan of the summer (I'm jealous!). Jacob also moved back home, working and joined the Coast Guard and our Anna is still plugging along with her fun mom. We'll try to have a better rest of the summer little girl.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Things in the Garden

Click on the images to view larger photos.

This is one of our many tomato plants.
I wish they'd hurry and turn red so I can have a tomato sandwich.

 This is one of our zuchinni plants.
The flowers are so pretty, I'd rather take pictures of them instead of their offspring.
I've already made zuchinni bread several times from our Z crop.

Of course we didn't grow these, but I couldn't resist taking a picture.
I don't know what these mushrooms are called,
But, they're growing in lots of places in the garden.
They seem to like the mulchy areas of the garden the best.

More pictures later. Back to mowing the grass, which...
produces nothing but green ground covering.
Oh well, green grass is nice too. ;)

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Wonderful Advice for Reducing Stress - Thank you Mickey McIntosh!!


1. Pray

2. Go to bed on time.

3. Get up on time so you can start the day unrushed.

4. Say NO to projects that won't fit into your time schedule, or that will compromise your mental health.

5. Delegate tasks to capable others.

6. Simplify and un-clutter your life.

7. Less is more. (Although 1 is often not enough, 2 is often too many.)

8. Allow extra time to do things and to get to places.

9. Pace yourself. Spread out big changes and difficult projects over time; don't lump the hard things all together.

10. Take 1 day at a time.

11. Separate worries from concerns. If a situation is a concern, find out what God would have you do and let go of the anxiety. If you can't do anything about a situation, forget it.

12. Live within your budget. Don't use credit cards for ordinary purchases.

13. Have backups; an extra car key in your wallet, an extra house key buried in the garden, extra stamps, etc.

14. K.M.S. (Keep Mouth Shut). This single piece of advice can prevent an enormous amount of trouble.

15. Do something for the Kid in You everyday.

16. Carry a Bible with you to read while waiting in line.

17. Get enough rest.

18. Eat right.

19. Get organized so everything has its place.

20. Listen to a tape while driving that can help improve your quality of life.

21. Write down thoughts and inspirations.

22. Every day, find time to be alone.

23. Having problems? Talk to God on the spot. Try to nip small problems in the bud. Don't wait until it's time to go to bed to try and pray.

24. Make friends with Godly people.

25. Keep a folder of favorite scriptures on hand.

26. Remember that the shortest bridge between despair and hope is often a good "Thank you Jesus."

27. Laugh.

28. Laugh some more!

29. Take your work seriously, but not yourself at all.

30. Develop a forgiving attitude (most people are doing the best they can).

31. Be kind to unkind people (they probably need it the most).

32. Sit on your ego.

33. Talk less. Listen more.

34. Slow down.

35. Remind yourself that you are NOT the general manager of the universe.

36. Every night before bed, think of 1 thing you're grateful for that you've never been grateful for before.

Source unknown


Always Say A Prayer

Monday, May 30, 2011

"Let Honor Meet Honor" -- from Our Daily Bread

Excellent devotional this morning. I wish ODB had a way of reposting their daily journals. This one is too good to just delete from my email, so I'm adding it to my blog. ;) 

READ: Matthew 6:1-6

Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. —Matthew 6:1

I’ve always been impressed by the solemn, magnificent simplicity of the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery. The carefully choreographed event is a moving tribute to soldiers whose names—and sacrifice—are “known but to God.” Equally moving are the private moments of steady pacing when the crowds are gone: back and forth, hour after hour, day by day, in even the worst weather.

In September 2003, Hurricane Isabel was bearing down on Washington, DC, and the guards were told they could seek shelter during the worst of the storm. Surprising almost no one, the guards refused! They unselfishly stood their post to honor their fallen comrades even in the face of a hurricane.

Underlying Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 6:1-6, I believe, is His desire for us to live with an unrelenting, selfless devotion to Him. The Bible calls us to good deeds and holy living, but these are to be acts of worship and obedience (vv.4-6), not orchestrated acts for self-glorification (v.2). The apostle Paul endorses this whole-life faithfulness when he pleads with us to make our bodies “a living sacrifice” (Rom. 12:1).

May our private and public moments speak of our devotion and wholehearted commitment to You, Lord. —Randy Kilgore

Grant me the strength this day, O Lord, to persevere, to return honor to Your name where I am serving. My desire is to give myself in selfless devotion because of Your love for me. Amen.

The more we serve Christ, the less we will serve self.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Best Made Plans... Ha!

Today’s calendar for “Project A Day”, was supposed to be lunch with my dad. Our lunch date was supposed to be birthday time together. Life has been so busy we haven’t had any time to get together to celebrate his birthday from February or mine from last month.

Unexpected news has changed our date again. More later…

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

My May Calendar for the "Project a Day"

So somethings are just for fun, school w/Anna and some are actual projects. I'll post pictures of the more interesting projects. I can't wait to see if this really helps or if it's just another list.
We shall see!

Monday, May 9, 2011


My “Project-a-Day” blogging

I got this idea from another blogger, "The Simple Mom", Deborah Taylor-Hough. I think it's such a great concept, I'm going to do it AND blog about it too. My hope is: Blogging about my projects will encourage me to DO them. ;) I'll put my list together for at least this month and then post it. For now, here is a brief description of what I'm going to do.


I'll make a point to tackle one project every day. At the end of the month, I'll be able to say I accomplished at least 30 projects (I hope). Of course I already start projects and finish projects all the time, but seeing something in writing helps me to get things done quicker and to actually complete those things.

I'll post pictures of some of my projects. A picture of a finished project is always a great motivator to get the job done. Some of my projects may be as simple as, "Sweep the deck" or "Go for a bike ride", so I may skip posting those types of projects every day. I will however put together a monthly calendar and post a picture of it or something visual so I can see all of the days listed with its project.

My first project is putting this post together. :) Tomorrow's project is putting together a calendar for the remainder of this month and posting it on my blog.

Finally... just so everyone knows. Yes! I already do things every day of the week, including educating my 14 year old daughter Anna. This "Project A Day" blogging is to help me tackle home improvement or spring cleaning kind of things, which always get swept under the proverbial rug. I SO need to inspire myself to finish all my nagging unfinished projects and this "Project A Day" idea sounds like a great way to accomplish some of them. Here's to finishing some of the things that I've been putting off for SO long.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Today... Tuesday 4/26/2011

I'm spending too much time on Facebook. Why is there an instant gratification from getting a reply to a post or a click on "like"?  Every "like" or comment = a pat on the back. WEIRD!!  Because I need to stop this craziness, I'm taking a break from Facebook and posting on my blog instead. I don't get comments here and that's probably good.

For today I'm just going to post everything I posted on my profile on Facebook, since that in itself is probably enough for a brief blog post. I won't even bother to post everything I posted on everyone else's facebook or how many times I clicked on "like" for someone; way too MUCH!

Jelly Beans... Who decided this was a good idea to have these in the house? =0

Love this song. "Over The Rainbow / What A Wonderful World" by Israel 'IZ' Kamakawiwo'ole ( #pandora

How many people get this "Hunt County Shopper" and what do you do with it? I've found some pretty neat stuff in this free paper. Keep it alive... click on LIKE to help them into the 21st century!

WOW, When these posts are on my blog, not in context of the instant, need to let everyone know what I'm doing, they seem VERY silly. Okay, now to get unhooked from Facebook!!!! 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Winter 2011

It is so amazing how much snow and ice we've had this winter. This is our third snow bound event, not third day of cold, but our third round of freezing cold, snow and ice covered everything.

These were some very cold birds that I got a picture of from my kitchen window. This was right before it started snowing. Poor things have ice on their backs. They are very greedy eaters and chase off all the other birds.

This is a picture from my front porch when it started to snow harder. That seems like a strange description... snowing hard. I think snowing hard should be an oxymoron. I also think Texas and snow should be an oxymoron, but this year has proven me wrong. Oh well, I like taking pictures of snow so I shouldn't complain too much. Always look for the positive in things! ;)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Oh Dear... this is not how I like to start my morning.

Time to exercise!

These are not my feet but I think I heard my scales yelled "Thank you" when I got off of them this morning. lol